31/10/2012 12:55 GMT | Updated 31/12/2012 05:12 GMT

Swiss Lips - From 'U Got The Power' To Open House At 'The Union'

A band. Playing free gigs. For a month. And it's open house. Strange but true.

Mancunian five-piece Swiss Lips have taken residence at 'The Union' - aka a defiantly non-hipster warehouse space in East London, where it's open house for the next month.

swiss lips

Swiss Lips - hard at work in The Union

Their first official gig - one of four main events - is this Friday evening but, according to frontman Sam Hammond, music can be heard at every hour of the day as the boys seize this chance to work on the tracks for their forthcoming album, and survive on four or five hours sleep a night - is it like Big Brother? He muses, "More like a refugee camp, bit cold and smelly, but it's worth it.

"It's all about trying to connect with people. They can get involved with making music, just hang out and party... partying is a big part of it. We've got it set up permanently, so a DJ can come in. We'll probably play most nights, too."

What else is going on?

There's a company called Dark Art Theatre, a couple who make performance art. We're collaborating with them on video and wall projection. I just can't give too much away."

The band, who've been together for the last year in this particular formation since their acquaintance on the music scene of Manchester, really came together in the studio to create "dark pop music".

But their music is extremely radio-friendly - see below - inviting comparisons to MGMT and The Rapture, so why the need to go down this novel and hard-working avenue?

"It's very hard to connect with people, so many bands out there, hard to get people to listen to it. We're not taking our situation for granted. We've very nearly finished our album, but there's a lot of work to do to get it out to people. Just because a record company likes our music doesn't mean everyone else is going to.

"We want to create a massive party. We can only do this the once. We want people to look back and think 'that was amazing'."

You can check out the party atmosphere yourself if you head down to The Union (16/18 Heneage Street, East London EL1 5LJ) any time between now and towards the end of November. Visit facebook/SwissLips for the guest list and more information about the band. And for the more conventional route of listening to the sounds, here's a taster below...