The Charm, The Fury at Download: The Benefits of Female Vocalists

How have you found the UK metal scene differs from the Dutch metal scene?

Mathijs: It’s very very different, I think the UK scene is all about paying your dues, and it’s very… it’s not dog eat dog but it’s so competitive, and the Dutch scene is a bit more mellow because there’s less competition, and so you notice instantly when you play a show in the UK it’s like… it’s not like you’re treated like royalty here it’s like you have to pay your dues, so here is how we’re going to start you off.

Lucas: It’s like ten other bands are coming to fill that place in for you for free.

Mathijs: Yeah, there’s ten other bands and half of them at least are really good, maybe better than you.

Lucas: Yeah, it’s pretty competitive!

Did you enjoy your set?

Both: Yes!

Lucas: There was so much more audience than we actually expected, because we were kind of early on, and it’s a Sunday and everybody’s hungover… we saw everybody coming from the campsite.

Mathijs: It’s like they’ve come straight from battle, like it’s WWI and they’ve been in the trenches.

I was actually sat outside because I couldn’t get into the stage, your set was awesome! What are your plans for after Download? 

Mathijs: We have a pretty packed festival season, it’s not a full on tour so we’re returning home and after this we’re doing Graspop in Belgium.

Lucas: We’re playing with Slayer this Tuesday.

Mathijs: That’s a bucket list right there!

Lucas: We’re playing in Hungary, Finland.

Mathijs: Finland will be the first time we’re doing Scandanavia which will be great.

Lucas: Czech Republic has a festival called Monsters of Rock. So all of Europe?

Mathijs: We’re mostly played UK and one or two gigs in France and Germany, and obviously the Netherlands because we’re from there, and then we’re doing all these new countries that we’ve never visited before which is really cool.

Are there any challenges that come with being a female fronted band that you didn’t expect?

Lucas: Well maybe not that we didn’t expect, but there are some challenges!

Mathijs: It has benefits and challenges, it’s easier I guess to get in the public eye, but the public eye is gonna be negative, it always is and the first question that they ask is… either they find you not to be deserving of anything, because you’re female fronted and you’re probably shit, or they say the exact opposite, the band us alright but it’s shit because there’s a woman, and people will always frame their opinions based on a woman being in there, so we have to address that first, and then if the music is alright then that’s secondary. But then the benefit is it’s easier to get noticed, but then to get taken seriously it’s maybe harder.

You don’t think you’d have the same challenges if you had a male vocalist? 

Lucas: Different challenges, probably, it would be much harder to get in the picture.

Mathijs: But then, once you start out it would probably be much easier for people to actually listen to the music and see if it’s any good.

Lucas: To look at it without any prefound opinion that people have of female metallists in the music industry… it kind of sucks.

Mathijs: To be fair we get part of it but Caroline gets most of the flack… or appreciation.

Lucas: She gets asked a lot, ‘who are you, are you the girlfriend of the band, are you the manager’ like no, I’m actually the lead singer.

Mathijs: To start off, you’re not in the band, what are you doing here? [Laughs] It gets a bit awkward sometimes.

Do you have any advice for upcoming bands like yourselves?

Lucas: Well, first just set your goals. Do you want to have fun? Do you want to take it somewhere? And then go and do what you want to do. If you want to take yourself seriously like we want to go and get this somewhere, really put every effort in that you can.

Mathijs: Don’t understimate it, it’s very easy to underestimate it, and I think no one in our band ever thought that we were underestimating anything but then when we were thrown into the mix, it was very challenging.

Lucas: What we did from the start was not put anything out that we weren’t totally happy with, so your first track, photoshoot, should be at a level that you yourself are totally confident that it’s right.

Mathijs: Your own opinion should never be ‘this is fine’, it should be ‘this is amazing’.

Which group would you love to support and why?

Mathijs: Probably Metallica. [Laughs]

Lucas: So this is a realistic standard, maybe what we could do in a year.

Mathijs: If I could pick a UK band, I would really love to support While She Sleeps because I feel like they are one of those bands that are refreshing the whole metal sound. They’re the freshest thing coming out of the UK right now and they’re really good live as well.

Lucas: I think our second tour show was with them, and they were nearly as big as they are now.

Mathijs: And they were still kicking ass.

Lucas: We thought they were amazing back then.

So on the flip side, which group would you love to support you guys and why?

Mathijs: Ooh, that’s a hard one!

Lucas: We might actually need to think about that for our upcoming run in Holland, there are some cool Dutch bands.

Mathijs: There are lots of band that are on our level that we would love to support, but we’re not really sure who should be up there as the main act! I still remember at our release show for the previous record, Heart of a Coward supported us in our hometown. Like right now that would be ridiculous, but it was pretty crazy.

Lucas: It’s hard, but the coolest Dutch band are Static.

Mathijs: So our regular guitar player broke his wrist so he couldn’t be here, but our supporting guitar player has his own band and that’s Static. 

 

Keep your eyes peeled for news on The Charm, The Fury!

 

Fizzy Blood at Download: World Domination

For those who aren’t aware of you yet, how would you describe yourselves?

Ben: Physically or musically? We’re a rock band!

Ciaran: We don’t mess about, we like riffs, we like grooves and we like everyone to have a good time!

Are you excited for your set?

All: Yeah!

Is this the first time you’ve played Download?

Ciaran: The second time, the first time was in 2014.

Ben: First time this line up!

Paul: The first time for me!

Ben: We played on the acoustic stage last time, we still played a full set.

Yeah, people do that, it’s really odd! So, what’s your songwriting process?

Ciaran: Er generally I’ll come up with, or Ben will come up with a skeleton of a song, and we’ll take it to the group and we’ll deconstruct it and everyone will put their stamp on it, and then we’ll go away and work on the lyrics together and we’ve got a tune! We kind of demo it out first and then we’ll take it to the live setting.

Ben: Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but when it does work it’s good.

How did Fizzy Blood start out?

Ciaran: Me and Ben were in a band before when we were teenagers, and that ran its course, and then we decided that we were gonna start a new band, and we found these fuckers, I was studying in Leeds at the time and put ads out for the rest of the band, found these guys, jammed it out and based on the common ground and stuff like that. There’s no fairytale, but we’ve been best buds ever since!

Were you at Leeds College of Music?

Paul: Yeah, I was yeah.

Ohhhh, I auditioned for them but I didn’t get in!

Ben: Ah, I didn’t either.

Well clearly they were wrong! So being based in Leeds, do you have a favourite hometown venue?

All: Brudenell Social Club.

Most people say The Wardrobe, so it’s nice to hear a change!

All: Really?! [seem surprised]

Ben: The Wardrobe is good, it just lacks er…

Ciaran: It lacks a bit of the vibe.

Paul: It’s alright, it’s not bad.

Ben: You take a tenner to the Brudenell and you’ve got your night sorted really!

[All laugh]

What’s the best show you’ve ever performed and why?

Paul: The best show we feel we’ve performed well?

Or your favourite one.

Paul: I think Camden Rocks last week was amazing, but I think disregarding that, we played this show in Korea a couple of years ago and everything was amazing! The sound was amazing, we played really well and the crowd reaction was great!

Ciaran: You threw a t shirt into the crowd and people were literally wrestling over it.

Ben: My favourite this year has been Dublin when we played on the While She Sleeps tour.

Ciaran: Oh yeah, that was sick. Everybody was going crazy and tearing each other to shreds.

How was supporting While She Sleeps?

All: Amazing!

Are they good guys?

Ciaran: They’re awesome, they’re the best guys. They’re probably the most accommodating band we’ve ever toured with, they went out of their way to make us feel welcome, and they taught us a lot and became de facto mentors and took us under their wing. Me and Benji actually got ‘six’ tattoos from Matt on our ankles when we finished the tour.

Oh that’s cool! Have you got any tips for budding artists? 

Paul: Innovate, don’t imitate!

Ciaran: Yeah, be creative, do your own thing, don’t try and copy anyone else and if you do, don’t admit to it!

[All laugh]

Do you guys have an ultimate goal for Fizzy Blood?

Ciaran: World domination.

Ben: That’s the ultimate goal of any band, really! We’re doing this until it’s no longer doable.

Ciaran: Until it’s sad really!

Ben: We enjoy doing it, we love doing it, that’s why we do it, I mean we’re not making any money out of it.

Who does these days?

Ciaran: We’re not in it really for success, I mean that would be nice, but we do it because we love to do it, and it’s a cliche answer but that’s why a lot of bands do it and that’s such a powerful thing.

Apart from Korea what’s the best country you’ve ever played in?

Paul: America, we played South by South West two years ago. Every time we’ve been there it’s been a good laugh.

Ben: I like Germany too.

Simple Plan at Download: A Simple Plan

Which song do you love performing live the most?

Jeff: Um, I’d Do Anything is pretty kick ass, it just gets the crowd going. We’ve been opening the show with that song and it actually really works, it’s one of those – you hear the first notes and you say ‘that’s Simple Plan right there’. It’s a great song, and it’s the song that probably got people’s attention first, Mark Hoppus [Blink 182] sang on it, so it’s a really important song for us.

What influenced you to write music and perform in the first place?

Jeff: The truth is always you want to express yourself and you want to be artistic, but at the same time for us, we just wanted to do all the bands that we loved and saw on the TV and heard on the radio. I remember seeing bands like Metallica playing Monsters of Rock and I was just like ‘maybe someday that’ll be us’, that was the goal. It’s always been about getting out there, touring, playing shows and I think as a musician you want to express yourself and do all that stuff but you also dream about being on those stages as well, and that was it.

What’s been the best part of playing Download?

Jeff: You know what, I’ve never played it, my bandmates have, I haven’t. I was having my second kid at the time so someone replaced me on that particular gig. I never played it but as I said it’s very symbolic for me because as I said, on TV I’ve seen bands that I really love and that I grew up with playing this festival or past versions of it, so it’s important for me because there’s amazing bands today and on the whole weekend, and it’s a celebration of music. I think now more so than ever it’s important that people are going to shows because of everything that’s going on. The kids are courageous, and the parents are even more couragous for letting their kids go to festivals, because there is a threat, you know, and I think what you’re saying by going and seeing your favourite bands is ‘fuck that, I’m not gonna bend over to that regime of fear, I’m gonna go out there and be with people with similar taste as me and I’m gonna celebrate life and celebrate music’. It sounds maybe like overly dramatic but I just saw Rock AM Ring being evacuated while we were playing a set and to be honest it got really real for me. I really felt like ‘oh shit, this is not something on the news anymore, it’s right next to me’. I think it’s serious. But yeah, it’s about music. It’s about loving music, it’s about great bands and it’s also a political statement nowadays.

Do you feel that you still relate to your music in the same way as when you wrote it, being older now?

Jeff: Being old? [Laugh]

Old-er! 

Jeff: I don’t feel old so that probably has something to do with the fact that I’m still playing in a band and I’m still staying very active but um… nothing will beat the feeling that I had when I first heard the greatest bands, when I heard Nirvana for the first time, when I heard Pearl Jam for the first time, I can’t even describe those feelings. These bands said exactly what the fuck I was living, it seems so important my identity was everything I cared about, and I see it in kid’s eyes now, it’s the same for them now. I haven’t felt a connection to a band as strongly as I had in those years, I have to be very honest about it, but I have been blown away by certain bands over the years. I work out to Mastodon, it’s a very very strong exit and escape and I love that band. Biffy Clyro, you have to understand that for us in America, we had no fucking clue that these guys were so huge. They’re just an alternative band in America and they were kind of the band that I discovered and was like ‘I know this band and nobody knows about them and they’re fucking awesome!’ I feel like the first time that I heard Nirvana like I had their CD and I was like ‘shit, this is gold!’ and Biffy Clyro is the same. If anything, that was probably the band that made the biggest impression on me in the last ten years.

Was there a simple plan for Simple Plan?

Jeff: You know that name is probably the shittiest band name ever since Metallica, you know, but when you name a band… well in that particular case we were hoping to change the name. We had a show the next week and were like, ‘oh fuck it, we saw a movie called A Simple Plan, let’s call it Simple Plan‘ and then we’ll change the posters, and it just stuck, and now there’s an afterthought wanting to explain it but the reality of it is it’s just a name. But the afterthought is just to get out there, play shows, travel the world and make records. It sounds all very simple, but for some fucking reason it’s a lot harder than it seems!

[Laugh] So, do you have any particular career highlights?

Jeff, Oh, many! So many, the first time I landed in Japan and I felt like I was in the Backstreet Boys and all the kids were waiting for us, and that around  2003 so I was just a kid. The first time I played New Years Eve in Times Square when the ball dropped down and we were playing right in the middle of Times Square, Mark Hoppus singing on one of our songs, he’s one of our idols. Playing really big shows in Europe, like huge festivals, like Rock AM Park, Rock AM Ring, Prague, we were fucking huge in Praque and I don’t even know how! And playing your hometown arena, that’s pretty sick. Playing with Metallica, having James Hetfield sit at my table while I was drinking wine and just chatting with us like it was fucking normal. I’m like ‘dude, I learned how to play guitar with you’, it’s fucked up. The weirdest thing is when I see kids do that to me, and I’m like, I understand but it’s so fucking weird!

What’s next for Simple Plan?

Jeff: We’re gonna finish touring, we have this 15 year anniversary of No Pads [No Helmets… Just Balls], so we’re still playing shows around that, it was meant to be a couple of shows around it, the release date was 19th March and we’re getting into July and we’re still playing shows! We’re gonna do that probably until September, after that we’re gonna start making a record. We have some material but we feel that we have to keep writing a little bit and recording so, that’ll take us too long again, but we’re Simple Plan and that’s what we do, we nitpick and take too long in the studio.

That’s not a bad thing though! 

Jeff: Well you know, when you’re searching for something you’ve gotta do it properly.

So what have you been listening to lately? 

Jeff: As I mentioned, Mastodon and their new record.

Did you catch them yesterday?

Jeff: No, I wasn’t here, we were playing London.

Oh, they were good! 

Jeff: Yeah I’m sure, they’re fucking awesome! I listen to a lot of Ryan AdamsButch Walker, old blues, fuck a lot of things, I even listen to classical! Newer bands I would say that… what did I get recently? I got a bunch of CDs that I haven’t listened to yet, so that’s pretty much it!

You’ve done a lot of collaborations in Simple Plan, which one has been your favourite and why? Or who was your favourite artist? They’re kind of different questions I guess!

Jeff: We recorded a song with Butch Walker, he’s one of my favourite solo artists, he’s got sort of a cult following, he’s pretty big actually, he’s more known for working as a producer for Avril Lavigne. But oddly enough he’s got his own alternative career, we did a song for a Scooby Doo soundtrack and it was a fucking cool experience working with a guy that I respected so much. Mark Hoppus is a kick ass dude. Sean Paul was pretty cool too, shooting a video with him in Barbados and him just kind of being so chill about it, it just reminded me that it should be fun, it’s not always stressful to do something, he just sits in and does it like he’s the fucking king of the world, and really he is, the king of his world. It was very cool and he’s very humble too.

 

Keep your eyes peeled on Musicology for news about the upcoming record!

 

Hacktivist at Download: Reaping What They’ve Sewn

On Saturday afternoon in the media garden at Download, Fiona ran into Rich and Josh from Hacktivist. They gave her some solid life advice, as well as a little bit of insight into being a British rap metal band.

Let’s jump straight into it! Rap metal is obviously a very niche area, how did you find breaking into it?

Josh: From my own teenage years to being a young adult, all the kids at metal gigs seemed to go either really techy metal or really hip hop and start wearing tracksuits, the piercings come out and the stretchers heal up, so I feel like there’s still that demographic of like guys who are into rap, but actually used to listen to stuff like Limp Bizkit and Linkin Park.

Rich: These days there’s so much crossover though, because nowadays it’s getting a lot less of ‘are you a greebo’ or ‘are you this or that’ and it’s like ‘what kind of music do you enjoy?’ Most people will say ‘oh you know, a little bit of everything!’

[Laughs] That’s literally the standard answer.

Rich: Erroneously, but most of them have a good heart.

So were there any specific barriers or challenges or anything that you guys faced?

Josh: Oh yeah, totally.

Rich: Purists. Sonisphere France was a particular… [IronMaiden headlined Sonisphere France, the whole first six rows was just Maiden fans.

Josh: Yeah, it can be pretty tough to place us, like a lot of promoters and people who put on shows don’t really know who to put us on with, if there’s any other band with guitars and rappers it’s usually that, even if they’re the complete other end.

Do you have any advice for upcoming bands who are similar to yourselves?

Josh: You can use crisps to spread butter because venues never provide cutlery.

Rich: Make sure you pack flip flops on tour.

Josh: Hmm, yeah, actually very handy.

Rich: Or basically just practise all the time and just get to be the best.

Josh: Get real real used to eating sandwiches. If you can get to peace with that, then you’re halfway there.

That’s pretty sound life advice to be fair [laughs].

Rich: If you can eat sandwiches for breakfast lunch and dinner then you’ve literally made it in the music scene.

Josh: Yeah.

How did you go about choosing a new singer to replace Ben, who left this year? 

Josh: Um… it was an interesting process, we had quite a few people apply from metal bands and different scenes. A lot of people were like ‘yeah, we could do something really interesting’ but we didn’t want to lose the niche-ness and become another heavy band with heavy vocals. So, Jot is someone we’ve all known from Milton Keynes for quite a long time, he featured on the first album, so we had a bit of working history as well. He messaged us, we didn’t know he’d be up for it, but he said ‘what do you reckon?’ and we were like ‘yeah, actually that would work real nice’.

Rich: He’s usually based in France, so that’s why some of us discounted him, but then the more and more you start thinking about these things it’s like, it’s only a flight from wherever to Luton, or if we’re out in, for example when we’re playing in Belgium that’s like an hour drive from where he actually lives.

Josh: It’s literally like five times more expensive to get to Manchester.

Rich: So yeah, the previous history just showed that it worked out back then.

Josh: It’s a testament to modern technology and the future, it’s possible to be a band across different land masses, thanks to stuff like Whatsapp and Dropbox and other web services that are available.

Rich: And migration, until it’s not!

Josh: Yeah that’s gonna be a real pain in the arse, but we’ll deal with that bag of shit when it comes around.

So is he bringing a fresh perspective to the group?

Josh: Yeah, he’s given us a proper kick up the arse, because he’s bringing new stuff in, and he’s listening to the stuff that we’ve got already and he’s getting us all excited about it again. Everything is going in the right direction, and I’m excited about the end of this year.

What’s your personal favourite band that you’ve ever supported?

Rich: Limp Bizkit for me.

Actually I saw them this year, they’re really good!

Rich: We played one show with Limp Bizkit and it was over in France, but they were one of my favourite bands from when I was a teenager, so being able to watch them side stage and have a bit of a chat with them afterwards was a big moment for me personally.

Josh: [EnterShikari still stand out as one of the finest live bands in the UK, and just some of the nicest guys to play a show with, they’ll always make you feel entirely at home.

Rich: I feel like I’m taking something away from [EnterShikari by saying Limp Bizkit.

Josh: It’s obviously a given. We’ve been lumped in with those guys and I’ve got zero problems with that, because they’re an awesome band. If there’s anyone to stick to, it would be [EnterShikari.

Rich: Maybe someday we can all get a joint house together. That’s a plan.

What’s your personal favourite group to have supported you guys?

Rich: Oooooooh.

Josh: I was a big fan of The One Hundred. Those guys are smashing it now. Maybe my opinion is skewed, because I just like bands that are nice guys, because it’s a lot of fun to play gigs with nice guys, even bands that you don’t really like, if it’s a nice group of lads you’ll go out and watch them.

Rich: Asteroid Boys for me I think, they’re a bunch great lads as well, and the music, especially when we’re talking about supporting and stuff, the cross over element with our two bands is really good, so obviously they’re really serious about their thing as well, they slay it and they’re good boys!

Josh: Amen!

[Laugh] What’s your songwriting process, particularly with the new guy Jot as well?

Josh: So it’s pretty studio based, which I think is pretty common across a lot of modern bands. It’s affordable to actually have your own studio, if you’ve got about £200 you can get yourself a set of speakers and an interface. We started off there investing in the band and investing in ourselves. We’ve got Tim and runs his own studio and he’s actually a really talented producer. We spend a lot of time hanging out with Tim. When you’re writing the techy choppy stuff, it doesn’t sound very rock and roll but it’s a lot of hours banging your head against a computer desk, figuring out what works and what doesn’t. It’s maybe more scientific than just rocking up, smoking some doobies and jamming out.

Rich: It’s less of a jam and it’s more formulaic.

Josh: And again because you’ve got the home studio, when you say that nothing’s ever finished and you’ve got to let it go, if you’ve got your own studio you can do version 56 and just adjust a tiny thing.

Rich: You’ve just got to submit it.

Josh: And then you realise you’ve sent the wrong thing at the wrong speed. Or sent it as a jpeg.

[Laugh] Do you have any musical recommendations for our readers?

Josh: If you’ve not checked out The One Hundred or Asteroid Boys, they’re wicked. I imagine if you listen to us you’ve probably heard of Issues, that’s a band we’ve toured with and that’s a great great band.

Rich: I feel like it doesn’t need to be said but Sikth? Do people not know about Sikth? If people don’t, shame on them, they’re always tight, so watch them live.

Josh: Ok here’s a nugget, Fell Silent. They’re a band from Milton Keynes that a lot of people haven’t heard of, but they’re like MeshuggahMeshuggah had a big name by the time Fell Silent came about but they were one of the first bands of that type, it was Fell Silent and PeripheryPeriphery went on and did great things, Fell Silent split up and became TesseracTMoment and Heart of a Coward, so if you haven’t heard of Fell Silent, their first album Hidden Words is the blueprint for most bands out at the minute.

Last question, any plans for after touring?

Rich: Writing.

Josh: Drinking… I mean writing.

[Laugh]

Rich: Lots of writing, because now we’ve got the line up all sorted, we’re gig ready and stuff now, so we stepped up to get that bit, so now it’s material.

Josh: Reaping what we’ve been sewing.

Rich: Or sewing, to further reap. Further reapage.

 

If you haven’t heard Hacktivist‘s debut album Outside The Box, it’s available now!

Interview: The Elephant Trees – 17/6/17

The Elephant Trees are a band from Leeds consisting of Martha Phillips, Sam Hugh-Jones and Tom Palmer. The band blends a great acoustic sound with a slight alt rock edge. So far the band have released their debut single 90 Degrees which you can check out via our premiere here (http://www.musicology.uk.com/the-elephant-trees-exclusive-debut-single/).

We had a chat with Martha and Sam from the band about their upcoming single Monster which is due to be released on the 1st July. With the release show being held at The Key Club in Leeds where they will be joined by the amazing Northern Shore and Faux Pas and Swimming Girls.   Read more

casey butserfest

Interview: Casey, Slam Dunk South 29/5/17

Following their hugely exciting Slam Dunk set (see the review here), we caught up with Tom Weaver, frontman of one of the most promising upcoming British bands out there right now – Casey.

How’s your weekend been so far?
Tom: It’s been really good actually. I managed to catch a couple of bands today which was cool, I was doing merch all day yesterday and at Midlands.

Have you got any good stories from the weekend so far?
Tom: Yesterday, I’d just finished watching The Bronx and I was walking down to Shikari and a guy grabbed me and told me “ska music is exclusively for paedophiles and magicians” and that was it. He just wandered off.

What would you put in a Casey cocktail? (It doesn’t have to be alcoholic)
Tom: Yeah I’ll take you up on that. No alcohol and no caffeine so… I have to be honest, it would probably just be tropical Sunny D.

What’s been your highlight of 2017 so far?
Tom: There have been a few really. Impericon festival in Leipzig is at the top – that was the biggest show we’ve ever played by a considerable margin. That was our first experience of a real festival too, plus meeting the guys in Thy Art Is Murder was cool too. I’ve been a fan of them for a long time so meeting them finally was greit, and on top of that them being so incredibly humble and really nice people was a huge thing. Other than that I think getting feedback on the record has been good, hearing different people’s interpretations on it and everything.

Who would you like to support or support you in the near future?
Tom: There are a load of bands we’ve said we’d love to play with like LydiaPianos Become The TeethTouche Amore…  In terms of smaller bands to support us, we love Movements so if we could sort something with them that would be great. Our friends in Holding Absence obviously, we’ve been trying to sort something out with them for a while so hopefully that will come soon. This year has really opened us up to touring with bands outside our genre and style so that’s always an option again. We all caught Citizen this weekend and thought they’d be awesome to play with so…

How do you feel Casey has changed since we saw you at Butserfest last year?
Tom: Nothing’s really changed, exactly. When we’re on the stage it’s very self-enclosed so the way we performed at Impericon for 8,000 people and the way we performed to a couple of hundred in the rain at Butserfest. Obviously we’ve seen an incremental increase in fan interaction since back then, and today was a perfect example of that. I think that was the first time I’ve ever been able to fully step away from the mic and hear the crowd back which was insane. Other than that, it’s just the gradual spread of fans week on week. We’ll have a look and see a few more in Australia and a few in America picking up on us so the organic increase of the fanbase is cool, but nothing has changed as a band exactly.

Which direction do you see your music going next?
Tom: We’ve never sat down and had a conversation about how we want to sound. Everything we’ve written up to now has been a product of improvisation really so we’ll go to a practice room and see. Sometimes someone has come up with something and say “I wrote this at home, I think it sounds cool”, sometimes someone plays something and we’ll say “keep playing that, I’ll just try this” and it builds. Whether it becomes an interlude in the live set or if it becomes a complete song we don’t know until we’ve built it. We’ve never decided we want to be a post-hardcore band or a post-rock band or a we want to write eleven really atmospheric songs, we just write how we feel. We’ve been messing with some pieces that might become a record but in three or four months’ time we might decide we’re not really fans of that anymore and do something else. What we’ve been doing is more of the same in a way, but more mature. A lot more thought is going into the layering and how we can fill a room with it because of the different shows we’re starting to play now. There are points in big shows like Impericon where about a minute of the set was lost in translation because of the acoustics of the bigger rooms.

 

Thanks to Tom for chatting to us! Casey are a band increasing in size and following rapidly so get on with immersing yourself in their recordings and live shows now to follow their monumental rise that’s just around the corner…

Reckless Intentions open up about upcoming EP ‘Lights’

Reckless Intentions are a pop punk band gearing up to release a new EP, Lights. We decided it was about time we caught up with these gentlemen to have a few words about the band themselves and what they’ve been aiming for with Lights.

Reckless Intentions gave us a valuable insight into their headspace, so see what they had to say!

1. For those unfamiliar, how would you describe Reckless Intentions?

We’re probably nostalgic pop-punk with a new twist. I’m always awful at putting a label on things, but that seems to be the verdict from the people who’ve listened to us!

2. You’re playing a lot of shows over the next few months, what can people expect from them?

Well we properly go for it – by the end of our shows, there’s normally some blood stained instrument or something. We’re really excited to try out some new material as well, and there’s always a lot of variety in our sets, so hopefully everyone will have a good time.

3. Do you have any particularly stand-out moments from previous live shows?

It’s probably going to sound pretty strange, but my earplugs tend to take a lot of the shine away from what we’re playing, so I can never really hear how we sound live, particularly audience reactions etc. We were playing a show at The Hope & Ruin in Brighton, where we couldn’t really see the crowd due to the lighting, and I was convinced that we were playing really badly, so I took my earplugs out midway through a song. Even though we were still playing the track, everyone was cheering and seemed to be having a great time, and that paired with actually being able to hear our band sounding great live, without any self-consciousness or uncertainty was a really sweet moment for me.

I wouldn’t recommend taking your earplugs out too often though, kids, tinnitus is a bitch.

4. You’ll be releasing your EP Lights in just over a month, would you say you’re more nervous or excited?

I think it’s a mix of the two. We’ve had some great responses from reviewers for the actual EP, and the songs get a lot of praise when we play them live, which gives me confidence that if we can find our target audience that we can definitely take some big steps forward; but at the same time, we know that some people won’t like us, and there’s bound to be criticism along the way, which we’ll just have to brush off and keep believing in what we’re doing.

5. What were your main inspirations for writing the EP, and did you have any specific goals going into writing it?

We’d done a lot of experimenting and playing around with our sound when we first started as a band, so we were really keen to have a clear identity as a band by the time we recorded our first EP, which I think we definitely managed to do. A lot of thought went into the details in each track, and we tried to do something that was undeniably ‘us’, and not just another rip-off of a much bigger band. Personally, the inspiration for the lyrics was growing up in a suburb filled with people who cared more about appearance than meaning. The main theme of the release is about feeling lost and trying to find your place.

6. As a band, do you have a collective dream?

Warped Tour has been brought up on quite a few occasions – it’s obviously quite an endurance test, but we love the idea of spending the whole summer travelling and playing shows in the States, especially considering their consistently strong line-ups.

7. Who would be your dream to tour with?

Probably someone like Green Day – a huge artist on both a global and personal level. It’d be amazing to do shows with the bands that made us who we are, and to play some of the venues they play at on tour would be a dream come true for us.

8. If you were to release a split EP with another UK band, who would it be?

We’re really into Penelope Tree’s last EP, who we’re going on tour with this month. They’ve got a really good way of combining ambient emotion with their own brand of powerful pop punk – we’re big fans!

With that, you’re going to have to wait for more info on Reckless Intentions and their exciting new EP Lights! We will, of course have all the latest – so don’t stray far!

Inigo With Confidence Slam Dunk

Interview: With Confidence @ Slam Dunk 29/5/17

During our time at Slam Dunk South, With Confidence guitarist Inigo Del Carmen took some time out to chat to give us an update on everything going on with them.

Could you give us a rundown of the past couple of months on tour?

February was just awesome, it totally blew our expectations out of the water. Headlining Europe, especially selling out a couple of shows was insane. We had the best lineup too – Broadside, Safe To Say and Milestones. All really lovely dudes. Safe To Say are like my favourite band, really really good. That whole tour was just amazing, and then we topped it off with the State Champs tour which was great. It was so sick to properly tour the US, not like on Warped but a proper tour. The parking lot feel of Warped is great and being busy all day every day is cool, but this tour was so chilled out with free time in the city and everything. We went to NASA on an off day, we went to Universal Studios for the first time. A lot of tourist stuff which was really good. The crowds were amazing and thanks to State Champs for taking us out on that as well. We met the Don Broco dudes too and they’re awesome [he says, as Rob and Tom walk past]. It’s so crazy to see them playing for crowds over here, it’s just a completely different show. Even though they were opening, it was obvious they were still a massive band. Made us really nervous playing after them too… Great sound, really energetic. A lot to live up to. I remember going outside one morning and Simon was out there doing pushups… They’re super fit as well as cool, not fair.

Have you got any good stories from this weekend?

Well every night we’ve been told it’s the party night so Luke let loose the first night… He just fell asleep in the green room because he was so drunk which was probably the funniest thing that’s happened so far. Actually no, he poured a beer on himself then skulled another one. He was beyond wasted, then last night Josh fell asleep in a bathtub which was a bit mad.

How did the Set It Off/With Confidence co-headliner come about?

We just said to each other “we’re both over here on the same dates, let’s just do it”. Such good dudes too, and super tight live. Homebound are really cool too and Too Close To Touch are sick. It’s been good.

Who would you like to bring to the UK next time?

There are a whole bunch of bands I love that don’t really suit our soud that I would love to take out anyway. I really love this band from Australia called Introvert, who are pretty unique. If I had to say what they’re like, I’d say they’re kinda Citizen/Basement/Brand New vibes, but they have their own thing going on and it’s sick. I’d love to have that February tour back with Broadside, Safe To Say and Milestones [laughs]. We’re doing an Australian tour with Seaway and Wstr which should be cool too.

Where do you see your new material going musically?

We’re aiming really high with this next one, for sure. I feel like the album was really well-received so we’ve got to top it, 100%. We’re feeling the pressure so we’re writing songs we never thought we’d write. Something unique, something different, something new. We’ll see about guests – I really want to! It would be sick to have some co-writes like what Trash Boat did with Soupy [of The Wonder Years]. We’ve made a lot of friends on past tours we’ve done so yeah, we’ll see.

Which release do you like playing from live most?

I’ll have to say Better Weather because it has a lot of songs I love playing like Dinner Bell, Gravity and Keys which are great. It’s good to play that album live too because I feel like we haven’t played them it all that much yet. We had to hold off the whole of Warped last year, which meant we only played about three songs off the album which was cool but hard too. It’s nice to play pretty much the whole album most nights now.

What would go into a With Confidence cocktail?

Well I mean, I’m pretty sure Luke drank beer, prosecco and orange juice last night… That was after he poured a beer on himself too. I’m guessing all the cheapest stuff you could think of put into a cup. Cheap wine, cheap beer and cheap vodka.

What can we expect to see from With Confidence next?

Well I’d love to be back here before the end of the year! [Announced since is that they’re supporting Mayday Parade later in the year through UK and Europe.] Basically touring, writing and that’s it.

 

Thanks to Ini for his time, what a lovely guy!

Artificial Language, 22/5/17

With the release of their debut record ‘The Observer‘ now being out for a few weeks, we got to have a quick and concise talk with Artificial Language about the release of the record as well as their upcoming plans. Have a read below!


For those who are not familiar, how would you describe Artificial Language?

A progressive Rock/Metal band that likes to include aspects of pop music

Your debut album ‘The Observer’ has been out for a few weeks now, how has the reception been as a whole?

We’re honestly very excited with the reaction. Everyone has been so supportive, we couldn’t ask for better fans

Who were your main inspirations for the record?

Steven Wilson, Between the Buried and Me, Dream Theater, and Danny Elfamn.

How was the whole recording/production process of the record as a whole?

It was very relaxed. We went at our own pace, and tried to enjoy the whole process because it can get stressful at times.

What are your favourite tracks on the new record?

Turn off the Pictures, Unself portrait, Fortune Teller.

What got you into wanting to be in a band?

We all just enjoyed playing music whether it was classical, metal, Jazz. We decided e wanted to try and make some songs together. Just a bunch of friends having fun, doing what they love.

What was your first ever live show you went to?

Watching Job for a cowboy and the red chord at a local venue called “the exit”

What’s the biggest change you’ve seen in yourself as a human growing in the band and personally?

Patience, things take time. Its all about getting into a good groove and sticking to it. Being persistent.

What advice would you give to upcoming bands?

Enjoy the music you’re creating and always have an open mind. Everyone can learn something new and that’s what’s fun about music.

Has there been any other bands on your radar you think people should check out?

Native Construct. They’re awesome dudes and very talented.

Is there any projects you would like to work on as well as Artificial Language musically?

We all like do write music on the side and we have each other in our projects. It’s really fun.

What would be a dream tour for your band?

Touring with Btbam anywhere would be amazing!

If you could do a split with any bands, who would you pick and why?

Hmm that’s a tough one. A split with the Dear Hunter would be fun.

What are your plans for the rest of 2017?

Write some more music, and get tour ready. We’re very excited to keep on going

Any final words to your fans?

Thank you for the all of the support, and we hope you enjoy what’s to come in the future!