Having fronted Manchester-based five-piece band Swiss Lips, and toured with the likes of Bastille and Blur, Hammond took a leap of faith departing from a renowned label to make music his own way, and thus, Neverlander was born.

London-based singer-songwriter Neverlander, aka Sam Hammond, is taking on the music scene once more.  Stepping forward as a recreated artist, Sam hasn’t just taken up a new name, but also a new attitude.

While he openly admits he “misses certain aspects of a band”, Sam feels it’s “nice to have a fresh start.” The fresh start he speaks of comes under a name drawn on fiction. When asked about the inspiration behind his stage name, he explained “I’m poking fun at myself really, as I struggle to grow up, like Peter Pan. Also, it looks pretty good written down which is the most important thing in 2018!”

Aesthetics aside, Neverlander is keeping it real with his new musical venture. When talking about his past in Swiss Lips, he makes no attempt to sugar-coat how structured it all was. “Pop music is quite formulaic, so we had specific self-imposed boundaries in what we could and couldn’t do. I’ve been a lot more free with creating stuff for Neverlander. Making weird drone-y 6-minute songs about death is fine now”.

If unusual alt-pop music is your vibe, then it’s worth checking out Neverlander’s debut single, ‘Rat Race’. The latest single is an eccentric mix of unconventional pop, droning guitars, and honest lyrics. As Sam puts it, the songs aim is to describe what it’s like “being torn in every direction by life in a city”. When asked about the significance of the lyrics relating to mental health in his music, to him it feels natural – “we seem to be entering a new period of open discussion about mental health issues. This is of course, is a brilliant thing.” The existential theme of Neverlander isn’t just limited to his music but is also reflected in his latest video for the single that features erratic dancing from his mate Frankie in Vancouver, which Sam deemed “pretty perfect for the theme of the song.”

Aside from ‘Rat Race’, Sam opens up about what else he’s been working on behind the scenes. “I’ve got a load of recordings already made and I’m working on more constantly,” he tells tmrw. “We’re planning to release music steadily from now on. I don’t know if it’ll take the shape of an album or EP just yet; we’re just seeing how people react to the singles.” The interview ends with Neverlander promising a tour in 2019, but at the moment he’s “just working out how to do it”, so soon enough you’ll be able to catch Neverlander on tour.

We’re looking forward to seeing what else Neverlander has to show. Check out ‘Rat Race’ below:

Words by Zoya Raza-Sheikh

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