Indieterria Review – The Blinders at Castle and Falcon in Birmingham

 

Event poster for the gig at Castle and Falcon

Paper Buoys/The Mothers Earth Experiment/Calva Louise/The Blinders
Castle and Falcon
Birmingham
23/10/2018

I was asked a question. A very simple one. Straightforward.

“How was it?”

Thoughts were running wild in my head. I wanted to say so many things and yet I barely could come up with anything. My throat was tight. From shouting and screaming. My head hurt. From head banging and being repeatedly kicked and pushed all over the place in the mosh pit. My body was tired and bruised. I was exhausted.

How can you answer, when a simple, straightforward answer simply does not exist?

Fancy shot of the venue – because the owner of the smart phone felt artsy;)

***

We arrived at The Castle and Falcon a bit late as the traffic in Birmingham was horrendous. Since Paradise Circuit in the city centre has been closed for major works, getting in and out of the Second City during rush hours reminds us of a military operation. You have to jump lanes, watch out for temporary traffic lights located in the strangest of places, swirl and turn and pirouette on narrow lanes like a ballet dancer. Two and a half hours of this mad dance is enough to tire you out before the show even starts. We sadly missed the first support act, a local Brummie gang named Paper Buoys, but at least we can find the solace in the fact that we have seen them open for the Blinders in February this year at the Sunflower Lounge. Maybe next time we will have more luck. Oh well, c’est la vie.

The view of the stage with red banners with Columbia emblem

The second opening act for the night, The Mothers Earth Experiment may also be local but they are well known and respected for their full blown psychedelic sound and mesmerizing stage presence. The sextet is led by vocalist and guitarist Mark Roberts and consist of James Baker (keyboard, backing vocals), Jake Clarke (bass), Reece Greenfield (drums, vocals), Oliver Overton (percussion) and Jackson Younger (guitar). We saw them play for the first time at the Night Owl in Birmingham in August along with our beloved WorcesterWave acts: The Americas and As Mamas and they made a huge impression on us. On stage, Mark Roberts is more of a shamanic priest with a guitar than a musician, his entire body was perfectly tuned to the music. His movements flowed naturally in coherence with the hypnotic rhythm section. Whenever the music stopped, Mark froze in a dramatic pose with his hands raised above his head and eyes open wide (or fully rolled back). Whenever the tempo changed, so did the performance. Blessed with powerful voice, nearly mystical chanting backing vocals and great skills, Mother Earth Experiment are something fresh and an absolute pleasure to watch. They played four tracks off their self-titled debut album released in 2017: “Ignorance”, “Quietus”, “Bliss” and their best known single “Cool Down Mama”. Two of the tracks were nearly 10 minutes each and even that felt like not long enough. It was heartbreaking to hear that this was one of their last concerts together as they decided to go their separate ways. The final performance will take place in Birmingham on 16th of November so if you want to go down in the rock and roll history, grab a ticket now. This will be one of those “I was there” moments worth telling your grandchildren about. We only hope that the remaining members will regroup quickly and return with a brand new, exciting project.

Tickets can be purchased:
https://www.facebook.com/events/385825898623595/
https://www.skiddle.com/whats-on/Birmingham/104-/The-Mothers-Earth-Experiment—Final-Show-w-High-Horses/13372200/

Mark Robert of The Mothers Earth Experiment

The Mothers Earth Experiment in full swing on the stage

The Mothers Earth Experience is a cult art rock/psychedelia act in West Midlands music scene

After The Mothers Earth Experiment charmed the audience (including the headliner and their entourage), Calva Louise had a difficult task of raising the bar even higher. The London based trio consisting of charismatic singer Jess Allanic, Alizon Taho (bass, backing vocals) and Ben Parker (drums, backing vocals) put up a great, energetic show full of grunge-like fuzzed riffs, sing-along melodies and angry pop beats. We were glad to hear people singing the lyrics to “I heard A Cry” and their BBC 6 Music acclaimed single “Outrageous”. Being the only woman on stage that night, Jess brought all the teenage girls to the front, where they had a proper 30 minute party. It was good to see their faces alight with excitement, watching a woman shred the guitar, shout her heart out and doing a splendid job.  With recent reports saying that nearly half of all new guitar players being females, we need bands (and role models) like Calva Louise more than ever. Their musical style may be very different than that of The Blinders but putting them together on one tour was surprisingly a very good decision. We are looking forward to see Calva Louise in the future on a tour of their own. Maybe with Soeur? Maybe with Estrons or Mercury Prize winners, Wolf Alice? We would love to see the British version of the Lilith Fair tour. It has been long time overdue.

With the Calva Louise set over, the mood inside the venue changed in a matter of seconds. The infectious, melodic vibe evaporated, replaced by nervous anticipation. The crowd thickened, the lights dimmed, voices reduced to a murmur. And once three, dark-clothed silhouettes appeared on stage, you could feel the temperature rising. The beginning was sudden and heavy like a shotgun blast. Bright red lights blinded those nearest the stage but behind our backs, a vortex of bodies erupted. The Blinders started off with “Gotta Get Through” and quickly followed with “L’Etat C’est Moi” and “Brave New World” without any breaks to catch our breath. It has been written and said many times but the band members are extremely skilled musicians. Thomas Haywood can bleed, throw himself on the floor, climb the amplifiers and still play flawlessly. If you have ever seen Luke Griffiths of the False Heads creating his perfect mayhem on stage, giving himself a concussion and still finishing his riffs, then you probably know what we mean. If you have not, then let’s just say that both Griffiths and Haywood are in the league of their own. They could juggle knives and still play their instruments simultaneously. The same can be said of the rhythm section that grinds everything in its path and spits out the splinters behind them. Looking like a young Nick Cave (and always dressed to impress) bassist Charlie McGough delivers thunderous cannonade and drummer, Matty Neale is properly possessed behind his drum kit, hitting the right notes with the speed of light and murderous precision. Such well-developed technical skills are rarely observed in a band that has been playing together for only couple of years. You could easily attribute them to musicians at least decade older.

Thomas Haywood as his stage persona Johnny Dream delivering a sermon to the faithful citizen of Columbia

The Blinders are a rare beast thought and their technical skills only match their song writing abilities. In one moment they can be as brutal as IDLES, driving their audience into frenzied pogo of epic proportions, in another they are delicate, almost lyrical. “Free the Slaves” is actually a poem recited with minimal, Beatles-inspired background music and the slow and dark “Where No Man Comes” showcases maturity in the use of language and metrical composition. Again, it is a common knowledge that the band is inspired by literature and poetry but it still takes you by surprise how well those artistic references are executed. Haywood’s declamation, gestures, half whispered-half screamed monologues are a small masterpiece in itself. It gives the live performance a bit of a theatrical luster and splendour. His charismatic stage persona of Johnny Dream, simple yet striking black make up, make you think of a Shakespearean actor. If he ever gets bored of making music, his next career move could easily take him to the stages of the East End or Broadway.

Charlie McGough performing on stage

Matt Neale – the beating heart of The Blinders

When you think the band would slow down a bit, the drilling beat and punkadelic aesthetics are back and you are thrown back into the mosh pit. “Swine”, “ICB Blues” and “Ramona Flowers” have the public on their knees and the band covered in sweat. The show goes on with people throwing their hands towards the stage, Haywood surfing the crowd and hanging from the ventilation crate on the ceiling, t-shirts being removed, naked bodies slamming into each other in a wild, almost ritualistic manner. And then comes the final push towards sonic destruction that drives everyone insane – 7 minutes of Dionysian thiasus in the form of “Et Tu”, “Berlin Wall” and “Brutus”. Now everything is allowed, everything is fair – hair is flying in every direction, somebody losses both shoes, the brave ones are stage diving, the meek are dancing and hugging each other. The trio gives it all.

The lights are turned off without warning and we all fall silent, waiting in darkness. Is it the end? We can see Charlie and Matty leaving their posts but Thomas is still hunched on the floor, motionless. One of the technicians is passing him a guitar and he raises, completely exhausted, to perform some sort of an encore, one last song of the evening. It is “Orbit (Salmon of Alaska)” a hauntingly beautiful composition penned as a tribute to a friend who took his own life. We can see tears in the eyes of many people as they sing to “dream the most dangerous of dreams” – to be free.

And then we are free. We are free of our worries, free of bad thoughts, politics, and rotten world that surrounds us. We are happy to experience something unique, a magical performance that brought us all together.

The band is now gone but we are still gathered in front of the stage, hugging each other and re-living the last hour. It will take us another 20 minutes to leave.

Charlie and Max Grindle – who helps the band onstage as part of their technical crew. Max is awesome and a proper legend. Here`s to you mate!

The Blinders in their element.

“How was it”?
It was beautiful. Cathartic. Impossible to describe.

If a picture is worth thousand words, maybe next time, a hug will be enough to convey thousands of thoughts and feelings? I truly hope so as I may be speechless again.

See you in two weeks in Bristol.

The merch stand

All the goodies the money can buy!

You will never escape the watching eye!

Setlist:

Gotta Get Through
L’etat C’est Moi
Brave New World
Where No Man Comes
Free the Slave
I Can’t Breathe Blues
Swine
Hate Song
Rat In a Cage
Ramona Flowers
Et Tu
Brutus/Berlin Wall
Orbit (Salmon of Alaska)

“Columbia” is available on Modern Sky UK
https://theblindersofficial.

Shadows play

————————-
Vanadian Avenue would like to thank: The Blinders’ technical crew and their management (for their time), Caffy St Luce (thank you, thank you – you know for what!!), Dizzy Spell of The Zine UK, Christopher Phee of Junior Weeb (happy birthday!), Lee Richardson, Milo Ferreira-Hayes, James Devine and Matt Rawlings of Dead Dads Club (for being the best of friends), Erin and The Cosmics (for being awesome as usual), Mark Roberts and the rest of the Mothers Earth Experiments (you are worth every taxi fare in the world), Calva Louise, Paper Buoys, Mark Stack (for being an awesome companion in the mosh pit), MOSES (for just being there), Becky Bushnell & Daniel Davies (for being absolute sweethearts!), Sonic Gun Concerts with Tom Holloway and Liam Connolly, Patrick and the rest of the Violet and everybody else who bought the tickets and made it such a special evening.

“Never Fight a Man With a Perm” by IDLES and “The Boy With a Bubble Gun” by Tom McRae are especially dedicated to our fellow gig goers.

And first and foremost to those who make the music

 

Erin Grace (The Cosmics), Thomas Haywood (The Blinders) and Chris Phee (Junior Weeb) at the after party

Matt Rawlings and James Devine (Dead Dads Club), Chris Phee (Junior Weeb) and music promoter Mark Stack at the after party

Matt Rawlings (Dead Dads Club) and Malicia Dabrowicz (Vanadian Avenue) with a broken nose…

Take care for now,
Mal+Rita

We thought that we will add some more photos from the night for the enjoyment of our blog readers. We did not manage to film all the bands, so at least two out of four to illustrate what a wild night it was!

Photo gallery: The Mothers Earth Experiment

 

Photo gallery: The Blinders

 

 

We have been writing extensively about the Blinders on our blog Indieterria, so please have a look if you want to know more.

Introduction to the band:
https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/07/07/indieterria-presents-the-blinders/

Interview with The Blinders:
https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/08/24/indieterria-meets-the-blinders/

Columbia review:
https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/08/30/indieterria-review-columbia-by-the-blinders/

Columbia album performance blog:
https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/09/21/indieterria-presents-the-columbia-library-archives/

Columbia Tour blog:
https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/10/15/indieterria-presents-the-columbia-tour/

That`s all for now

Mal+Rita

Indieterria meets Dirty Orange

Hello!

Welcome to our the newest chapter of Indieterria. In this edition of our blog we are hosting an act from London that is recognized as one of the brightest stars on the indie circuit in the capital – Dirty Orange. The band comes to Birmingham to play The Victoria on September 28th 2018 as part of their national tour. They will bring three established acts with them: Whitelight, ANOA and Dead Dad`s Club.

If you’d like to learn more about other acts, please see our other blogs:

Dead Dads Club interview: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/06/04/indieterria-meets-dead-dads-club/
“Must be crazy” EP review: https://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/wyre-forest-entertainment/2018/09/28/dead-dads-club-must-be-crazy-ep—review/
WhiteLight Interview: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/09/25/indieterria-meets-whitelight/
Anoa Interview: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/09/26/indieterria-meets-anoa/

We sat down with Dirty Orange to discuss their musical influences, their beginnings and the London music circuit. Hold onto your chairs and read on:

Dirty Orange
George (guitar & lead vocals)
Scott  (bass)
Connor (drums & backing vocals)
Beno (guitar)

Official bio: Dirty Orange are a four-piece rock band from South West London building a reputation for “in your face, powerful, dance along” live shows. The band released debut EP ‘X.X.X’ in 2017 which has been described as “having that jolting early Arctic Monkey’s sound” by music scene influencers GetIntoThis. The band are touted as ones to watch in 2018 by Jack Rocks & Some Might Say among others

One of the privileges of being a music journalist is that you can interview bands with rare or very unique names. Dirty Orange seems to fall into the “very unique” name category. Quick research helped us to find a bottle of French perfumes called Dirty Orange, an Australian vegan café and a definition from The Urban Dictionary saying that Dirty Orange “can relate to either alluring fragrance with a hint of danger or someone with sweet disposition that displays violent or foul character traits”. What exactly is Dirty Orange according to you guys?

Dirty Orange: That’s brilliant about the French perfume and vegan cafe. But the name came about quite simply because George (vocals and guitar) and Connor (drums) look dirty and Scott (bass) has orange hair !

Live shows are said to be a high energy experiences

Your sound has been described as a perfectly balanced diet of Arctic Monkeys, The Clash, Nirvana and The Libertines. Do you agree with such classification?

Dirty Orange: (laughing) Yeah this list is a huge compliment as those bands are all massive influences on the music we write, but also there are some heavier rock influences on our sound from Motörhead to AC/DC.

You come from South London that is being described as the busiest part of the capital. How do you remember growing up there? Did having an easy access to cultural and artistic events helped you to reach the decision to pursue musical career?

Dirty Orange: Definitely! Growing up with such easy access to central London and famous music venues as well as art galleries has inspired us to pursue and write our music.

Every band started somewhere: at school, at a party, at football practice. Tell us more about your beginning as a group. Where did you meet and when did you know that you wanted to play together?

Dirty Orange: To cut a long story short, Connor, George and Scott all met doing this random summer job at a rugby club in Twickenham packaging season tickets when we were 17. We all got on so well. Connor played in a band at the time, Scott and George were into music but didn’t play. They decided to pick up their instruments a few years later and we bumped into each other on a night out where we decide to start this band and went from there. Fast forward a few years and we decided, we wanted to thicken our live sound by bringing in Beno (guitarist) who Connor went to school with so we managed to convince him up to come shred with us. Simple!

Your newest single is entitled “Hellraiser” and has been called an anthem for the young generation.  It has a very crisp sound and it is skilfully produced. Where did you record it and who is the producer?

Dirty Orange: “Hellraiser” is a massive track and a massive step up in production and fine detail for us. We were luckily enough to work with Wolsey White who has number one albums to his names and plenty of top 10 singles. We recorded the record in various different studios, all with Wolsey of course.

You have been working really hard this summer. You had some sort of a residency at Dingwalls Camden in London with several shows, you played Shindignation Festival, Red Light Sessions at August Bank Holiday Festival, Tramlines Fringe Festival, Hazfest in Kingstone, Venture Festival in Nottingham, The Great Escape Festival in Brighton and several others. And now you are back on the road again. Where do you take your strength from?  Loads of beauty sleep?

Dirty Orange: (laughing loudly) True, it has been a busy summer for us, but we never get tired from playing as it’s what we all love doing in life! We guess, we all have that extra push and energy to be playing, rehearsing and writing as much as possible! We also bounce off each other’s positivity in the band so it’s important we all have a positive mind set before every show/studio session/etc.

On September 28th you will perform in Birmingham with Dead Dad`s Club, Anoa and Whitelight. Are you planning something special for your West Midlands fans?

Dirty Orange: Oh yeah, it is going to be a massive night! It’ll be our first time playing in Birmingham so we can’t wait to see what the music scene is about and show what we got! So will be a special night!

What’s next for the Dirty Orange after the autumn tour? Are you planning to take a well deserved rest or is it back straight to the studio?

Dirty Orange: After the tour we will be taking a few weeks out as Connor is in Nashville doing some serious Dirty Orange networking! As soon as he’s back mid October, we will be writing rehearsing and gigging again. We already have November 30th planned at the Fighting Cocks in Kingston, plus 10th November in Staines with a local band that are good pals of ours.

Dirty Orange – bohemian like you

Last but very important question – if you could support any band active at this moment , whom would you choose and why?

Dirty Orange: Oooooh good question. Any band? That’s a tough question to answer so we will pick one each. For George, it would be Kings of Leon, for Scott it would be Arctic Monkeys, for Beno – Blink 182 and for Connor – Foo Fighters.

Please follow Dirty Orange on social media:

https://www.facebook.com/dirtyorangeband/
https://twitter.com/dirtyorange3
https://www.dirtyorange.co.uk/
https://www.instagram.com/dirtyorangeband/
https://open.spotify.com/artist/3tNGUtOuqPkXN7R4hIat6u?si=KLNW6wnBQFS_OgCtVxnDcw

We hope that you enjoyed this interview and we will be reporting back from the gig.

Ta for now,

Mal+Rita

 

Indieterria meets WhiteLight

Hello!

We are truly excited to announce that in a couple of days a special show will take place in Birmingham! Yet again, Vanadian Avenue is teaming up with London-based music management & promotion team, Modern Age Music to bring you the best new music, the best new bands and the rock and roll carnage to the venue near your home.

Poster promoting the gig on 28th of September

If you’d like to purchase tickets to the gig, please click on the link below:
https://www.facebook.com/events/2117544788482905/

To celebrate, we have sit down with three bands that will play on Friday, 28th of September and we asked them few questions about their beginnings, their music and what can we expect on the big night. And those quick interviews are capturing the unique quality of the DIY music scene – they are short, sweet and very open. And that’s what we like about the independent circuit. There is no beating about the bush or tiptoeing around  – quick question, honest answer and very, very raw emotional music.

Our first interview is with Birmingham based duo, The WhiteLight. Enjoy!

Official bio:  Whitelight are Birmingham based duo formed in early 2018 by James Watton and Stasys Sliauteris. They have recently released their debut single ‘Shiver’, taken from their soon to be released self titled debut EP. Their music is influenced by Paris Monster, Jack White, Pixies, Yak and Queens of the Stone Age. Their unique sound gained attention from This Feeling who put the duo on tour with Mint and The Wholls in March 2018, with a sold out show at Sunflower Lounge on March 30th. James and Stasys are both experienced musicians with many year of gigging and touring experience and also multi-instrumentalists able to produce their own recordings.

WhiteLight logo

At Indieterria, we like to theorize about our guests’ names and you must be the first band ever we interviewed that seemed to choose a fully scientific moniker! According to technical definition, WhiteLight is a light that is composed of wide range of electromagnetic frequencies and that appears colourless to the human eye. Are we correct?

WhiteLight: That seems to be the definition! Pretty interesting right? Imagine that- there are certain colours we can’t see, there are frequencies we can’t hear. We find all that stuff pretty interesting. There’s so much we can’t perceive. We wonder what we’re missing?

You are a little bit of enigma and there is not much information about you on the World Wide Web except for that you are a duo named James and Stas and you have been making music for over a decade (sadly not as a team!). Be so kind and introduce yourselves to our readers.

WhiteLight: There’s not a load to say, we’re like-minded musicians and we love making music. We’ve both been a part of (and still are involved with) other projects, but this band is a really good outlet. If something is on our mind we can talk about it, if we feel a certain way we can try and convey that with a sound or the way we play or something.

James and Stas of WhiteLight

WhiteLight supported a great number of well-established bands such as The Lizards, Lice, The Hungry Ghosts, Me Me Detroit, Kim Logan to name just a few. You play festivals (Swansea Fringe Festivals) and sold out events. Your career is picking up a pace. You must be really excited about it.

WhiteLight:  We’re just trying to put ourselves out there and we’re fortunate that we’ve been offered these opportunities at an early stage in our career. We feel really grateful for the support so far. Hopefully we can keep growing and working with other great artists.

We have to ask about the tour with the Wholls and Mint you did for This Feeling earlier this year. Both bands receive rave reviews for their performances and being on a tour with them must have been a huge opportunity for you. Tell us how many shows you played together and where?

WhiteLight: We’ve played two shows with Mint in the Midlands and we’re heading to Grimsby to support them in their hometown next month. Unfortunately the gig with The Wholls was a one-off, but those guys were really good and we’d love to play a show with them again!

Let’s talk about your single “Shiver”. It has an interesting structure and is easily recognizable. Can you tell us more about it? What’s the inspiration behind this song?

WhiteLight performing live

WhiteLight: The song was really written out of frustration. After spending a couple of years living in the city, we could see this massive divide between rich and poor and it’s like there’s always distraction from what really matters. Major corporations demand that everyone consumes their products and the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

WhiteLight have been compared to the Arctic Monkeys, The Kooks, The Clash and the Sex Pistols with very strong cold wave influences. What are your musical heroes and what inspires you to create?

WhiteLight: We haven’t heard some of those comparisons before! We are not sure how close we are to The Kooks or The Arctic Monkeys, but we definitely have an underlying punk thing going on. The cold wave thing is interesting, it’s not a genre we’re massively familiar with, but it makes sense as we are using synths and stuff in a kinda punk/rock way.  Artistically  we look up to artists like Paris Monster. They’re not necessarily that similar in genre, but in terms of sounds and drumming synth players, Josh Dion is the boy!  Yak are another great influence, they lean towards psychedelic rock. We saw them play in someone’s living room in Brighton a few years ago. What a night! Jack White is another one; the tones that guy gets are killer and obviously with him being in a pretty successful two-piece, we can’t overlook that! Speaking of interesting two pieces, we are really digging the ‘Sleaford Mods’ at the moment too. In terms of creating music, so much can inspire you. It could be a feeling, a thought, a word/sentence that resonates, a sound, a set of chords or an interesting melody. Anything really!

You come from Birmingham so you know your local scene like a back of a hand. On 28th of September however, you will be playing with bands visiting the Second City for the first time. What would you like to tell them about Brum?

WhiteLight on stage (again)

WhiteLight:  Go to the Meat Shack for a burger… Or if you’re vegetarian or vegan check out the Warehouse Café (laughing).

Imagine, you can book a gig with any band in existence, anywhere in the world. Where do we go and who is playing with you?

WhiteLight: We recon, it would be Sting in our mums living rooms… They love Sting!

2018 was a busy year but let’s look to the nearest future. Where can we see you live and what’s in store for you? New music, new opportunities? Confide in us

WhiteLight: We’ve got the Fringe festival in Swansea and our team up with Mint just after that but we’re focusing on sorting some releases and some merch for the near future. We’ve not got many gigs booked for the end of the year but who knows, we’re ready if something right for us comes up.
Birmingham is a great city to be a musician in so we’re looking forward to seeing what’s to come.

You can Follow WhiteLight on social media:

Shiver single cove



https://www.instagram.com/wearewhitelight/
https://www.facebook.com/whtlght/

Listen to their single “Shiver” online

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/shiver/1343284651?i=1343284652
https://open.spotify.com/track/5MYlHPJjGWKXTZQpLXmj0z?si=B-xZPhLwRVG_N4_BIoSavg

Please come back tomorrow as we have another band waiting to tell you  their tale!
Have a good day

xx
Rita and Malicia

 

Indieterria meets Jack Fletcher Band

Hey all you people (right here, right now)!

So much is going on dear readers, that we don’t know where to start! Interviews, pictures, secret gigs being organized (maybe in Birmingham, or maybe not 😊), plans and collaborations – we are 24hrs party people, only our party is a long-time marketing campaign! It is an exciting time to be alive as our friend says, but we wish our day had 48 hours instead of 24. Or well, you only live once.

Saturday, the 9th of June is coming closer and closer and we cannot wait! We will have a mini Worcester invasion with HVMM playing at The Flapper, Lost Tigers appearing at the Bishop and Actress and Dead Dads Club coming back to The Sunflower Lounge to rock you like a hurricane. Please use the links below to purchase the tickets and support The Racket, Jack Fletcher Band and our Malvern boys in DDC, if you are looking for a quality entertainment. Always support your local DIY scene. Those bands are the future of the British guitar music!

Poster for gig at the legendary Sunflower Lounge on 9th June 2018

https://www.facebook.com/events/216304582300587/
https://www.seetickets.com/tour/modern-age-birmingham-w-the-racket

You can also read our previous interview with:
Dead Dads Club: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/06/04/indieterria-meets-dead-dads-club/
The Racket: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/05/20/indieterria-meets-the-racket/

The event has made it onto the newspapers in Brum, so we are happy kittens:

https://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/music/2018/06/04/wolverhamptons-the-jack-fletcher-band-to-support-the-racket-in-birmingham/

Today, we would like to present you with the last interview we did to promote the show. The Jack Fletcher Band is one of Wolverhampton’s finest new bands and you just have to see them live. We talked to lead singer and guitarist, Jack Fletcher about the band’s name (quite obvious!), playing with Johnny Brown of Twisted Wheel and their new upcoming music. No beating about bush, only simple and straightforward answers. This is what we like!

Band`s logo

Jack Fletcher (vocals, guitar)
Tom Robinson (drummer)
Henry Bradley (bass)
George Hadley (lead guitar)

Official bio:  The Jack Fletcher Bans is an indie-rock four piece from Wolverhampton that can only be described as real rock with their stripped back guitar music, Midlands twang and their live-for-the moment attitude.

After the split of his former band “The Town”, lead vocalist Jack Fletcher began his solo career before meeting fellow band members: Tom Robinson (drummer) and Henry Bradley (bass) on a music technology course at university. From this friendship and the introduction of George Hadley (lead guitar), The Jack Fletcher Band was formed. Combining influences from mod bands such as The Jam & The Who with the rock and roll sounds of Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix.

To date these Black Country lads have played numerous festivals and venues including Lakefest (supporting the likes of Primal Scream, The Coral, Cast and Star Sailor), Party in the Pines Festival, Wolverhampton’s Slade Rooms, Notting Hill Arts Club, Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham and the legendary Band on the Wall in Manchester.

With their unique and timeless compositions, youthful spirit and optimistic outlook, The Jack Fletcher Band are a group that will stand the test of time. They are a band that not only defines the present, but a band that embodies the culture and guts of those that came before them and will continue to do so for years to come.

Amazing picture taken by our dear friend Nidge Luhg Sanders at Trust A Fox Photography https://www.facebook.com/TrustAFoxPhotography/

Before we start, let`s have a proper introduction to all the members of the band. Please tell us who is who?

Jack Fletcher: Hi. My name is Jack Fletcher and I’m the lead singer and I play guitar. The rest of the band is George Hadley on lead guitar, Henry Bradley on bass and Tom Robinson on drums.

You have been performing under The Jack Fletcher Band moniker for quite some time now. It is simple yet memorable name. Did you choose it on purpose or was it last minute decision that just stayed with you? Are you tempted to change it to something else?

Jack Fletcher: We decided on The Jack Fletcher Band as the band’s name wasn’t really something we cared about. I wasn’t really good at picking names so we picked the worst name that we could find (laughing). Joking aside, it’s just stuck with us.

Your biography mentions that the band started out after a group of incredibly talented musicians took the same music course at the university. It is a perfect script material. Was it really a random encounter or did you know each other before?

Jack Fletcher: We all knew each other. Myself, Henry and Tom – we all really met at college and George was a friend of Jack’s early on… and the rest is a history (laughing).

Jack, before forming this group, you fronted The Town, an accomplished act in its own right. Can you tell us more about your project?

Jack Fletcher: The Town was my first real band. We played all around the country when we were around 16 -17 years old. Looking back on it, that’s a big achievement in itself really. We did well and we were so very young. But we enjoyed it.

Jack Fletcher Band in black and white

You have wonderful working relationship with Twisted Wheel. You supported them several times and in return Johnny Brown performed with you on stage. How did your collaboration start?

Jack Fletcher: We were always big fans of Johnny’s music and we met him at an acoustic gig in Derby some time ago and our friendship has been good ever since. We see him as a hero, but please don’t tell him that (laughing). He is a good friend.

The video to song “Has it all gone wrong” beautifully directed by Benjamin Harrp amassed over 100k views on social media.  We have to admit, we absolutely love this song. It is very emotional. Any back story behind this track?

Jack Fletcher: Thank you! The story behind this track is very simple. I personally believe everyone can relate to it. Anything can go wrong in life but I suppose, it is always for the right reasons. The song is very emotional but I think it has a positive ending. You know, “keep on keeping on”, that sort of thing. And we are glad to hear that people can relate to the song’s tune and its lyrics.

Another of our favourites “What are you waiting for” was produced by Ryan Pinson at RML Studios in Wolverhampton. Pinson is known for working with several upcoming independent artists such as Jump The Shark, Wax Futures and Cosmic Rays. His style is crisp, a bit raw and energetic. Was that what you wanted to highlight in your song?

Jack Fletcher: Writing a good song is one thing but getting it produced well and making it sound like you do live is very difficult. Ryan’s a legend. He is an excellent producer and he can do his stuff very well. Always brings the best out of our music and that’s very important for us.

As Vanadian Avenue is based in Worcester, we have to mention that you have played on our home turf at Worcester Music Festival in 2017. How do you remember it? We hope The Faithful City provided you with a solid crowd and good memories.

JFB live on stage

Jack Fletcher: Yeah we have played in Worcester a few times. To be honest sometimes a bit too early for us to have half-decent crowd. You seem to put up shows very early guys, but the experience hasn’t been bad all bad (laughing).

On 9th of June you will join The Racket and Dead Dads Club at The Sunflower Lounge for a true rock and roll celebration. Are you preparing something special for the gig?

Jack Fletcher: We will try and impress people at gig on Saturday. That’s what we always intend to do anyway. We are not planning anything special, we will give it our all and maybe play a new tune.

Your schedule this year is fully packed. Where can your fans see you next? Any summer festivals or important concerts we should be on the look out for?

Jack Fletcher: We’ve got a quite a few things coming up and we are getting quite busy again. But everything still needs to be confirmed. Always come to our social media sites including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to check things out. You will not be disappointed.

As mentioned already, the band is available on all important social media platforms, so take your pick!

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jackfletcherband/
Official website: http://www.jackfletcherband.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jackfband
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thejackfletcherband/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC81Xd2zyhx0Xkju36Q5Geug
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/jackf_music

Talking to the bands is one thing, but seeing them live is a completely different set of vinyls. Hopefully we will see you in Sunflower Lounge this Saturday. Bring your friends, a pair of comfortable shoes and let’s dance the night away!

Au revoir la haut à mes amis (just because speaking in French is hot these days)
xoxox
Rita and Malicia

Indieterria meets Dead Dads Club

Dear Readers!

The first half of 2018 is behind us but your two faithful A&R’s are not stopping for an inch! In the last week we have travelled with Nuns of the Tundra to HowTheLightsGetIn festival, witnessed them play a semi acoustic gig at Paradiddles Cafe for Before The Music  workshops (similar in form to the “Story Tellers” on MTV if you are old enough to remember it!) and wave them off to go to Swindon for a meeting with a producer!

That’s not all! The Americas and Soeur were chosen by BBC Hereford and Worcester to play at the Wychwood Festival and you can see a short video of The Americas playing one of their best gigs on Vanadian Avenue Facebook page. In short, it was a crazy 7 days  but we are having the time of our lives (as usual anyway)!

New week and we have a brand new interview for you dear readers. We have sat down with Lee Richardson, lead singer of the Dead Dads Club, to discuss Malvern blooming rock and roll scene, new tracks and their love for the DIY, guitar driven scene led by bands such as The Blinders. Dead Dads Club will support The Racket on their first national tour and you can catch them both (plus the Jack Fletcher Band) at the Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham on the 9th of June. The show is organized by the great people at Modern Age Music and you can find more information about the show here:

Poster for gig at the legendary Sunflower Lounge on 9th June 2018

https://www.facebook.com/events/216304582300587/
https://www.seetickets.com/tour/modern-age-birmingham-w-the-racket

We have to admit that we giggled like schoolgirls reading the interview and Lee’s sense of humour (bit dry and sarcastic) made it one of the funniest interviews we ever hosted on Indieterria.

So, please enjoy!

Lee Richardson (vocals, guitar)
Matt Rawlings (bass)
James Devine (drums)
Milo Ferreira-Hayes (lead guitar)

Official bio:  Hailing from Malvern, Worcestershire, The Dead Dads Club consist of four close friends: Lee, Milo, James and Matt. Lee Richardson (lead vocals) is known for composing meaningful lyrics that everyone can relate to. There is a rich deepness as much as sense of humour backed up by strong, dynamic rock and roll acoustic steele string guitar. Lee’s chords are graced by Milo Ferreira-Hayes on lead guitar. Their partnership creates a unique sound with strong arrangements and lush solos. Then comes James Devine with his powerful drumming and unmatched beats that strongly root the band inside the alternative and independent genres. Matt Rawlings’ atmospheric and hypnotic bass completes the musical equation. The Dead Dads Club tour consistently and played many important venues in West Midlands such as The Sunflower Lounge, O2 Arena and O2 Institute in Birmingham, Gifford Arms in Wolverhampton or Marr’s Bar in Worcester. They shared stages with The Racket, HVMM, Nuns of the Tundra, Jump the Shark, Matchboy, Juniper Nights, Winchester, Ruben Seabright, The Soviets and many more.

According to your bio, The Dead Dads Club are four good friends with similar musical interests and outlook on life. You listen to the same records and laugh at the same (apparently unfunny) jokes. Please introduce yourselves to the readers of Indieterria.

Lee Richardson: All right, let’s get started. First, we have JD or James Devine. Our drummer is 23-year-old history graduate. Has a tendency to throw his drumsticks mid-song and he’s a huge music fan. One of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet, although he never shuts up (laughing).  Matt Rawlings. Bass. 19 years old. Studying music at college. Saved the band when our previous bass player Liam left as I was ready to jack it in.  Intelligent but quietly reserved, and says what he needs to.  Milo. Lead guitar. 17 years old. Studying music with Matt in Hereford. Channels Jimmy Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughan while he continues to develop his own style.  Highly intelligent, loves the ladies (and some men).  He’ll go places.  Lee Richardson.  Rhythm guitar, vocals. 30 something. Loves the band, they’ve become his family.  Came late to the music game but is glad he did.  Also, what really brings us together is we’re fed up of what is considered “popular music” these days. Where the hell are the guitar bands in the charts?  We aim to be part of the wave of new guitar bands that will bring back indie music to the masses. Its due, and it’s going to happen. Bands like The Blinders will lead the way for this new wave.

We heard there is a good story surrounding your first meeting. How and where have you met?

Lee Richardson: Actually, there is (laughing). I met JD first, in a pub over Christmas in 2016. He’d put an Oasis track on the jukebox and in my drunken state, I stumbled over to his table and asked who the Oasis fan was.  Initially, JD thought I was coming over to start trouble so… (laughing again). Anyway, we started chatting and he joined me at some open mic night accompanying me on Cajon. At one such open mic, we were just sitting down as a tall, good looking kid walked in with a guitar and amp in hand.  He set up and started banging out “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” by Hendrix note for note perfect.  Jaws dropped around the pub, and I was introduced to Milo 10 minutes later.  Milo, being an old soul in a young body (he’s 17), decided he was going to adopt us and he started joining JD and I on stage.  Matt came into the band last as a replacement for Liam Blakemore, who left us after becoming a father last year.

Dead Dads Club Live
Picture by Duncan Graves https://www.facebook.com/duncan.graves

The Dead Dads Club is a highly unusual name. We did a little research about it and the results are very inconclusive. We found an episode of a popular American TV series “Grey’s Anatomy” bearing that title, a book, an independently released murder-mystery stage play and a scientific paper. What is the inspiration behind the band’s name?

Lee Richardson: A friend of mine, Tristan James (who is an incredible rapper and lyricist by the way) and I were working on some songs together two years ago.  Tristan’s dad had passed away two years before and mine had just died around the time.  We made a joke that we should call ourselves The Dead Dads Club. Some found it distasteful, we found it funny and as time went on, it proved to be an attention grabber.  As the band was developing in its infancy, we moved forward without Tristan as we felt that we wouldn’t be able to accommodate rap within our music, and that Tristan’s talents needed to have the sole emphasis placed on him alone.  We still work together and have a collaboration between DDC and Tristan James coming out this year.

The original line-up of The Dead Dads Club included Liam Blakemore on bass and Milo Ferreira-Hayes on lead guitar. Currently you have a newcomer, Matt Rawlings on guitar and Milo moved on to play bass. How long have you been working with Matt? When did he join the band?

Lee Richardson: We have been working with Matt just under a year now. We were lucky to find him after Liam left the band to concentrate on his new family.

Talking about Matt, we have noticed that him and Milo have a tendency of swapping guitars during gigs. Is it done only for certain songs or are you trying to totally confuse the audience?

Lee Richardson: Matt is actually a lead guitarist first and foremost, but we dragged him into the band as we needed a bass player.  Luckily, he could hold his own on the bass.  Matt and Milo swap their instruments over on a song called “Stop”. When we recorded the studio version, Milo was laying down his lead track, when I suggested an idea of putting something “Hendrixy” into the solo. Matt immediately heard something in his head, grabbed Milo’s guitar and played the most amazing little lick that had Milo put his hands to his head in disbelief and proclaim: “You’re a @*%^”! Please insert the swear word of your choice! We all still laugh about it months later. We have another new track in development about an unsuccessful application to play at a local festival that Matt will again take guitar duties on.  And yes, we love to confuse the audience.  It’s what we do best!

Your home town of Malvern is relatively small but it has long musical tradition and a vibrant scene. You are part of the local pack along with Nuns of the Tundra, Ruben Seabright, UltraMegaOK and White Feather Collective. Any explanation for such a high concentration of talent per square mile?

Lee Richardson: Malvern has always attracted arty types from all over the country. It has also produced many talented locals in many endeavors aside from just music. There’s good music everywhere, but I think a lot of people are scared to put it out into the open as they’re worried what people will think.  Bands like the Nuns of The Tundra and The White Feather Collective have got the balls to believe in themselves and their songs and they should.  They set the standard in Malvern for sure and I’d argue further afield than that as well. The Malvern scene has been very supportive of us playing our own songs, and that has provided us with a platform to build on to play bigger towns and cities. Of course, others would say the high concentration of talent is just down to the Malvern spring water (laughing).

Lee Richards singing his heart out
Picture by Duncan Graves https://www.facebook.com/duncan.graves

Dead Dads Club’s music has been compared to The Beatles, The Stone Roses, The Doors, Oasis, Crosby Stills Young and Nash, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Ryan Adams and Arctic Monkeys – that’s some of the biggest names in popular music. Tell us what inspires you to write?

Lee Richardson:  Have we?  Jesus, we should be playing Wembley by now then if that’s the case (laughing). Our influences vary, but all those bands have been massive for me when I was growing up.  I have one goal when I write and that’s to infect a person’s mind with the melody or the hook.  If I see people dancing, tapping their feet or getting emotional when they hear Dead Dads Club track, then my job is done.  My lyrics aren’t really deep or even that good. It’s hard to write meaningful lyrics when you have a heart of stone (laughing again).  Most of the tracks have been inspired by either ex-girlfriends, stalkers or life events. I don’t look at the moon on a dark starry night and have flood of beautiful Dylan-esque lyrics come to the forefront of my mind’s eye.  I’ll leave that to all the Joni Mitchells of this world.  I’m rather in-your-face rock n roll writer with attitude and swagger. That’s enough for us.

Your shows attract large number of guest musicians and singers. We are especially interested in James Burnham who joined you on stage playing electric violin many times. Any chances of seeing him performing with you again?

Lee Richardson: James was an original member of Dead Dads Club along with Liam, Milo, JD and myself. Our sound changed after Liam left the band, and it was becoming increasingly difficult to accommodate a violin within a setting that was chasing a heavier charged more electric sound.  James Burnham is probably the most talented musical mind I’ve met and I plan on doing more acoustic recordings with him as a duo to add to the songs we’ve already recorded together.

Recently you played three gigs in one day. Were you celebrating a special occasion or trying to beat the Guinness World Book record for the biggest number of gigs played in a single day?

Lee Richardson: We already have a record for band with the most special needs, so we’ll settle for that one for now (laughing). We played at a 21st birthday party in Malvern and did an acoustic set to start things rolling, before packing up and heading to play at The Brickroom in Worcester.  We then headed back to the party to play a full electric set.  It was a good day and the alcohol certainly helped us along the way!

You have been working hard on your new batch of songs. So far you have given us three titles: “After the War”, “Chant” and “Buttons of Gold”. Can you tell us more about those songs?

Lee Richardson: We have such a backlog of tracks, it’s hard to decide what to bring to the set next!  The first song you are asking about “After the War” was written by Matt and myself after consuming half a bottle of Jack one Sunday afternoon.  Matt’s been listening to a lot of Jeff Buckley recently and wrote the trip chords. I wrote the lyrics and melody there and then. Not sure why, but I had images of a post-apocalyptic Earth ravaged by the aftermath of fallen society.  So, I just wrote the story that was forming in my head and we had the track recorded as a demo within an hour. Another demo recording, entitled temporarily as “Chant” in short is a peace protest kind of song. I channeled the “Hey Jude” chorus and came up with my own interpretation of that massive crowd singalong. We’re currently rehearsing “Chant” to add to the set, but “After the War” will probably end up as just a standalone song. It would be very difficult to reproduce the haunting sound we got on the recording on stage, unless we used multiple effects peddles and we don’t believe in overdoing it with those. “Buttons of Gold” is brand new track inspired in a way by the sound that The Blinders have made their own.  It’s about an experience that Jimi Hendrix had when he came to London in the 1960’s with two policemen who stopped him for wearing a WW2 military veterinary core jacket but really because of the color of his skin, let’s face it.  I encourage everyone to read up on it, it’s interesting.  I won’t bore you with the details here (laughing). Anyway, we’ll be playing “Buttons of Gold” for the first time in public at the Sunflower Lounge gig on June 9th. We are supporting another good guitar band, The Racket so come and see us there.

The band in full
Picture by Duncan Graves
https://www.facebook.com/duncan.graves

Next months will surely be very busy for you. What’s in store for the Dead Dads Club? Anything we need to know?

Lee Richardson: We’re having a month off in July to re-charge and find new inspiration.  Our EP is ready to roll now, and that’ll be out in August.  We’ll be throwing a release party at Carnival records in Malvern, and playing a set there too.  The momentum has been building nicely thanks to support from the Nuns and local promoters, and we’re going to build on this massively this year, guaranteed.  Long live rock n roll…and cheeseburgers.

You can follow Dead Dads Club on social media:

Management and booking:
Officialdeaddadsclub@gmail.com
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBAV3WyU2Yika85Moux8uzg
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/officialdeaddadsclub/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/deaddadsclublive
Instagram: www.instagram.com/officialdeaddadsclub

Articles about the band:
http://www.malverngazette.co.uk/news/15889224.Bands_to_play_in_Worcester_as_part_of_Independent_Venue_Week/
http://www.worcesternews.co.uk/news/16080910.Snow_forces_Malvern_band_to_postpone_gig_-_but_the_show_goes_on_in_nearby_venue/
https://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/2018/03/13/birmingham-show-rescheduled-for-worcester-band-nuns-of-the-tundra/

We cannot wait to see Lee, Milo, James and Matt rocking The Sunflower stage again! Last time Dead Dads Club played there, they gave their best and the audience loved them. Some tickets are still available, so do yourself a favor and come see them live.

The Blinders might be leading the musical revolution, but Dead Dads Club are following their footsteps!

Please come back soon as we have  another great interview to show you before the big day  next Saturday!!

till then,
Rita and Mal
xxx

Indieterria meets FAITH

Dear readers!

Thank you so much for your kind reaction to our interview with The Racket! We are truly grateful for all the shares, likes and positive comments, it means a world to us! We hope that you are enjoying the interviews as much as we do preparing them and hopefully, we will see you all at the Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham for a real rock and roll banger on 9th of June!

If you’d like to learn more about the event organized by the wonderful crew at Modern Age Music or read the previous interviews we published, please click on the links below:

Poster for gig at the legendary Sunflower Lounge on 9th June 2018

Event page on Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/events/216304582300587/
Organizer: Modern Age Music: www.ModernAgeManagement.com
Interview with As Mamas: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/05/09/indiaterria-meets-as-mamas/
Interview with The Racket: https://cocamidemea.wordpress.com/2018/05/20/indieterria-meets-the-racket/

This interview was done as Birmingham native band FAITH was supposed to support The Racket – however after we did the interview band had to cancel. Still so, Indieterria got hold of McCabe, Jason, Tom and Matty to chat about their second EP (which will be simply called “Two”), the joys of working with long-time friends and returning to stage in their home town. As one of our musical heroes keeps saying, it’s great to be alive and it’s a pleasure to be able to discover new exciting bands.

Let us introduce you to:

FAITH

Jason Payne – Vocals & Lead Guitar
McCabe James – Rhythm/Lead Guitar
Tom Jones – Bass Guitar
Matty Neale – Drums/Percussion

Band`s logo

Official bio: Faith is a Birmingham based quartet consisting of Jason Payne (vocals and lead guitar), McCabe James (rhythm guitar), Tom Jones (bass guitar) and Matty Neale (drums and percussion). Founded in 2015 they draw their influences from The 1975, The Cult and Joy Division.

Within the walls of debut EP “One”, FAITH’s true musical introduction to the world is conjured, with a compelling combination of dark pop layers amongst an attack of strings and a rebellious pulse. Hook-filled melodies sit within hard and heavy beats as songs are laced with intelligent yet angst-filled lyrics which speak to a generation. The synth infused, deep funk underlay adds salt to the wound building up to a unique dirty, metallic dance eruption. Their recent single “Honey” received an extensive airplay on BBC Introducing in West Midland.

Local press sees you as one of the outstanding bands in town on par with The Assist, Karkosa and The Clause. Please introduce the band to the readers of Indieterria.

McCabe James: It will be my pleasure. FAITH is Jason Payne, our lead singer and guitarist. He also plays synth. Well in reality, he just pushes one button on it before each song, that’s all (laughing). Next, we have Matt Neale who plays drums. Tom Jones is on bass and backing vocals. And then there’s me, McCabe. I’m the newest member of the band on guitar and some backing vocals but I’ve known Jason and Matt for years and being in other bands.

Jason Payne: We are a four piece indie pop soon bringing to you an explosive new EP, full of silly guitar riffs and mint combination of drums/bass with an average vocal but great lyrics. That’s how I would describe us (laughs).

Matty Neale: So we’re a bit of everything, you have me Matt Neale on drums always up for a laugh and don’t take life too seriously. Jason Payne vocals can be shy but once you get to know him he is possibly the funniest person I have ever met but he’s an absolute legend and knows how to make your cheeks hurt through laughter and he also writes some banging tunes along the way. Tom Jones plays bass like a boss but also originally came up with sex bomb, it’s not unusual etc. McCabe is cockney what more is there to say apart from he’s mad as a box of frogs but is completely devoted to shredding the guitar and living life to the full. Altogether we are FAITH an original indie pop/rock band from the West Midlands.

Tom Jones: We’re just four lads that enjoy making music and having a laugh while doing it to be fair. Jase is the funniest bastard I’ve ever met and a perfectionist in every sense. McCabe knows his way round a guitar better than I know my way round the pubs in Shrewsbury (that’s well). Matt is a quality drummer and we gel well as the ‘rhythm section’ of the band. And well I just turn up half hour late to everything still pissed and get an alright sound out of a bass I suppose.

Faith ready to unleash new music

You have been praised for your eclectic song writing and compared to The 1975, Joy Division and even to The Cure. But we want to hear what new elements you bring to popular music. What makes you unique?

McCabe James: Thank you. We add a nice mix of different influences that shine through on each song but with a big guitar sound when needed. The new music has definitely progressed from our first EP  – “One”.

Jason Payne: Our old management compared us to all those bands and they don’t really have a clue about music so I wouldn’t listen to that. We`re pretty unique I can’t say we sound like anybody to be fair.

Matty Neale: Our EP Two is unique, it is the best piece of music I’ve ever heard from an unsigned band if I do say so myself. Energetic drum beats with powerful guitar riffs shredding through and catchy lyrics that have meaning. We’re a mix of old and new in one.

Tom Jones: I think we’re unique just because I can’t put my finger on our sound, even more so in the new EP but when I got asked to join I listened to some of the tracks from EP One and couldn’t get where the influences had come from but took an instant liking to the band.

FAITH knows how to have good time. Your interests on social media mentions “parties, females and sunshine”. Imagine you are in charge to plan a weekend away for Robert Smith. Where do you take him and what do you do for two days?

McCabe James: (laughing) This is a good question. We would probably take him to Amsterdam and get on it!

Jayson Payne: Who’s Robert Smith?

Matty Neale: McDonald’s drive through would defo be on the cards and maybe my nan`s.

Tom Jones: I’d take him to The Nag`s Head in Shrewsbury cause it’s the best pub in the world and show him how to down a Guinness.

Despite your young age, you are not debutantes. You have been making a mark on Birmingham scene for about six years now. In 2013, Express and Star called you “an indie band on the road to success”. The same year you played your first show at the O2 Academy. Your songs appeared on Amazing Radio, Black Country radio, BBC Hereford and Worcester, BBC West Midlands and BBC Introducing. You crossed the country on tour, filling out important venues such as Sunflower Longue in Birmingham, Slade Rooms in Wolverhampton and Nambucca in London. This is a very impressive CV indeed.

McCabe James: Thank you. Well, we are trying our best! Right now, we’ve been off the scene for a while. We have been rehearsing, writing and recording for the past year and a half since I’ve been in the band so it was a long break for us. After this, we feel like we have to start from scratch in a way but we’ve had a pretty good response to our new single “Honey” even if the Facebook likes don’t prove it (laughing). We just love what we make and we hope the audience will like it as well.

Faith in monochrome

The band’s first EP “One” came out in October 2015. It was immediately promoted by BBC Introducing and received positive reviews in local press and zines. How do you recall the recording session?

McCabe James: I have to admit the recording process for our first EP was a lot easier than the recording for our second one. All our songs were written before we got into the studio to record “One”. This time it’s different. We are in the studio now, writing the material and recording it at the same time.

Matty Neale: I’d been out the night before and went straight to the recording session. Took me about 500 times to get the beats right because I was still wrecked but managed to smash it then fell asleep listening to “Your Love Is Wasted On Me” feeling sorry for myself.

Tom Jones: I don’t because I wasn’t there but if it’s anything like the ones I’ve been at, Jase would just have everyone in tears for ten hours straight.

Over the years, you have had several line-up changes. The core of the band seems to be centred around Jason Payne (vocalist and lead guitar) and Matty Neale (drums and percussion). Can you tell us about your composing process? Do Jason and Matty compose all the songs or does the band work together?

McCabe James: Jason, Matt and myself go a long way together. We were in a band called “The State Of Things” about five or six years ago. After TSOT parted ways, we eventually reunited and went on to form FAITH. Everyone is involved in composing and writing music. We all have our own styles and preferences but what really counts is everyone is engaged in our creative process. We all contribute equally towards writing.

Jason Payne: The songs are usually a quick group process instrumentally but a long, painful process lyrically. I don’t like to put my lyrics out there if something doesn’t sound right or doesn’t have a meaning.

Matty Neale: It’s weird but we work as a band so well that one of the lads could hit a chord and I’ll put a beat to it or vice versa. Then Jase will put some lyrics on it and before you know it we have a new tune. We all add bits or parts we want to as long as it sounds sick!

Tom Jones: A lot of the time Jase will come to us with an idea and then we’ll all have an input into what we put into the song but a few times we’ve just played some random stuff in practice and accidentally wrote a song in half an hour. I think we all gel really well as a band to be fair and that helps when writing new material.

Cover of “One” EP

FAITH has been crafting the second EP entitled simply “Two” since last year. What can we expect and do you have the release date yet?

McCabe James: We do not have a release date so far, no. What can you expect? Well, we’ve progressed a lot as a band. Since I joined in, we have changed the style a bit. Our music got bit more groovier and funkier. Our personal music tastes also developed and I’m sure you will be able to hear it on our new EP when it is released.

Jason Payne: No release date as of yet but it is pretty fucking decent I’ll give us that.

Matty Neale: You can expect it to be 10 times better than Arctic Monkeys new album to put it that way. Hoping to release it in the summer.

Tom Jones: We have got a proposed date but it’s our secret for the minute! As for the EP it’s the best thing I’ve ever been involved in and we all think it’s the dog bollocks to be honest. I think we all enjoyed writing these tunes and getting them down and I think that shows in the music.

First single to promote your upcoming EP, “Honey” is already hitting radio stations.  It is regarded as the indie anthem of summer. Can you tell us more about the song?

McCabe James: What can I say? “Honey” is basically a song Jase wrote about his misses! (laughing)

Jason Payne: Song is about my misses, always moaned at me for years for not having a song written about her and now she does and she’s happy, and what a tune it is.

Matty Neale: It`s catchy and upbeat with story telling lyrics.

Tom Jones: It’s an upbeat catchy tune and it’s one of my favorites to play. Great for summer.

Jayson Payne

On June 9th, you will be returning to Sunflower Longue to support The Racket. Will you play any of your new material?

McCabe James: We are very excited to perform alongside The Racket, The Jack Fletcher Band and As Mamas.  Definitely, we will be playing our new songs at the gig as well as the older ones. We can’t wait to see you all there.

Jason Payne: (in a very enthusiastic voice) Yeah!

Matty Neale: (in the same time as Jason) Yes!

Tom Jones: (agreeing) Yes.

One last question. You can make your one wish come true. What would that be, except for the world peace of course!

McCabe James: (laughing) I wish we could do this full time so we can finally quit our shit day jobs!

Jason Payne: To play to more than 5 people obviously!

Matty Neale: I would absolutely love for our tunes to be heard around the UK and the world. One of my main wishes is to play our set on The Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury. That would be a dream come true!

Tom Jones: Play massive gigs and have as many people as possible listening to our music. Sounds cliche but it’s what we love.

If you’d like to follow FAITH on social media, please use the links below:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/weareFAITHx/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/wearefaithx
Twitter: https://twitter.com/weareFAITHx
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wearefaithx/

We absolutely love FAITH. They are funny, full of enthusiasm and they work/play hard in equal measure. We are heartbroken that they will not support The Racket on this tour but we will do our utmost to catch them live in the near future.

For now, that`s all from us dear readers and keep your eyes open for upcoming editions of Indieterria.

Mal+Rita

Indieterria meets The Racket

Hello, hello!

Band`s logo

We always say that the time goes really fast when you are having fun and it is true. So many gigs, so many outings, open air mic nights and  it is almost the end of May! But the most exciting months are still head of us.

The next big date in our rock and roll diary is the 9th of June when we will be going back to the beautiful Sunflower Lounge to see the newest indie rock sensation, The Racket. The quartet is now on their headlining national tour and they decided to pop into the legendary Brum venue to show the West Midland folk how to play, fast, powerful songs and how to thoroughly enjoy the experience. The gig is brought on by the amazing crew at Modern Age Music and we cannot wait to step into the mosh pit.

If you are interested in purchasing tickets for the Birmingham show, please click on the link below:
https://www.facebook.com/events/216304582300587/

Poster for The Racket gig on 9th July 2018 at the Sunflower Lounge

To prepare well for this musical feast, we sat down with the band to ask them several questions, from their early days in their hometown of Widnes, to musical inspirations, their newest single and some of the rock and roll antics that will definitely go down well into the  history of  modern music. The interview is one of the longest we did and we had a real blast. Thank you The Racket and hope you had as much fun answering these question as we had asking them and putting them on here!

The Racket – social media profile picture

Callum Codd
Mike White
Dom Eaton
Colby O’Sullivan

Official bio: The Racket is an alternative rock four-piece from Widnes that receives more and more attention on an independent music scene. The band have played their own headline sold out shows at Liverpools Zanzibar Club and Manchester’s Night and Day. They completed their first UK tour in 2017 supporting Louis Berry on numerous dates up and down the country then topped off with a hometown gig with Trampolene. Such creativity, melded with high energy enthusiasm, has been rewarded by them being listed by This Feeling as one of the big in 2018 bands. Their trajectory is steep and they are building momentum with every lager stained, sweat drenched show – and that’s just the front row. Having recently finished recording with Al Groves in the Motor Museum, the second release is finished and will be coming out later this year to coincide with their first music video. The band is currently on headline national tour with several summer festivals booked in including Great Escape, Confessional and On The Hill Festival as the main support to CAST. The Racket will play The Sunflower Lounge in Birmingham on 9th of June 2018 with support from The Jack Fletcher Band, FAITH and As Mamas.

You describe yourself simply as a “four-piece from Widnes”. Please introduce the band members to the readers of Indieterria.

Callum: I’m Callum. I’m guitarist and singer.
Michael: Hi, I’m Michael and I play the guitar.
Dom: I’m Dom, the drummer.
Colby: And I’m Colby. I play the bass.

Your home town boasts of strong musical heritage. Widnes lies closely to Spike Island where The Stone Roses held their legendary festival, it inspired “Homeward Bound” by Paul Simon (a song written at a local train station) and is referred in works of Belle and Sebastian (“Stars of Tracks and Fields”) and Elvis Costello (“Watch Your Step”). Jane Weaver and Mel C call Widnes home. The town also has a famous music venue – The Studio. Have your city and its history had any effect on your band?

The Racket. Picture by Culture City management https://www.culturecity.co.uk/the-racket/

Callum: To be honest the history of Widnes hasn’t influenced me at all and probably never will! It’s the present, the way people go about their daily routines today and their lifestyles. It interests me to write and sing about the people around me. Mostly just normal things, born mainly out of frustration but also out of enjoyment. I think all the best comedians, actors, songwriters are the ones who are down to earth and talk about normal things.

Michael: Widnes is just where we have grown up and lived. As for an effect on the band, well it’s the special people from Widnes that have carried us through since day 1 to where we are today. Without their backing, we’d be playing The Hammer and Pincers on a Friday night doing shit covers!

Dom: I don’t think it’s something we think about often. The town itself hasn’t had an impact too much, it’s more the people around us that have influenced us. Widnes is just like any other town in the UK and our songs are relatable because they’re about issues and problems that happen to people our age up and down the country.

Colby: I wasn’t very interested by music while growing up. I was way more into football, up until around 2005 and 2006 when there was a lot of new bands coming through like The Arctic Monkeys. I would say, from that time on, I was influenced by music more than anything else.

The Racket is being compared to The Sex Pistols, Libertines and The Cribs. We can think of a dozen indie bands who would be mortified by the pressure to deliver. Comparisons to the greats seems to invigorate you. Do you have a way to handle music related stress?

Callum: We don’t often get stressed. We’re all good mates and we’re doing it because we love it. If people want to compare us to others, then so be it.

Michael: Every band gets comparisons as soon as they start. It gets boring when people ask, what sort of music are you? Get off your arse and go see a band live and it might just blow your mind! I think it’s in our nature to compare music to what’s gone before, but there’s no stress or pressure. We’re just doing what we’re doing and still would be whether people think we sound like The Sex Pistols or Danny Dyer’s Chocolate Homunculus.

Dom: It’s great being compared to The Sex Pistols and The Libertines because we’re fans of these bands but we’ve heard it that often now, that for me, it has become a bit meaningless. This is our band, we want to do our own thing, create our own sound and make our own impact. What invigorates me most is playing live and knowing that you’re playing to a crowd of people that want to hear your music and are going for it just as much as you are. Of course, we’re serious about the music and where we want to take it but we’re still four really good mates having a laugh and doing it cause we enjoy it. For me there’s no pressure on us.

Colby: It’s always nice to be compared to good bands from the past but I don’t think it affects us in anyway. We just want what they’ve got or had and it’s our music out there for everyone to hear an enjoy.

On the set of their first music video by Sitcome Soldiers Ltd https://www.facebook.com/sitcomsoldiers

In one interview you mentioned that your songs are born out of “boredom, teen angst and social commentary”. Which song you have penned so far makes you truly proud of and what it is about? 

Callum: Going back to what I said earlier about normal, mundane things. There’s a song I’ve wrote called “Two Minutes Hate” which is exactly 2 minutes long and goes through the routine of someone who gets up, goes to work, comes home, has their tea, goes to bed, repeat. Frankly, it’s most people I know! This is why, I think I’ve managed to capture it quite well. Quite proud of that one, but I also love the song called “Why Are You Watching Me” mainly cause of the riff!

Talking about teen angst, the photo promoting your single “Faded Days” shows your bare bottoms lined up along a wall. The picture is accompanied by a quote taken from the lyrics that states you are fed up being “bend over backwards for a man who’s in a suit”. Very risqué yet incredibly brave for a young band. Did it get you in any trouble?

Callum: (laughing) Not yet, no! Hopefully it does sometime otherwise we would have just stuck on normal picture there! And it’s funny you pointed out that lyric because we genuinely had it on there! We love playing footy and that’s how you end a football match where I’m from!

Michael: (laughing as well) The only trouble I had was having to look at Dom’s hairy arsehole all day!

Dom: We haven’t got into any trouble for it yet, still time though (laughing). I don’t know why anyone would complain though. I’ve been told on at least two occasions, I have a great arse.

Colby: Let’s just say, for the cover of “Faded Days” we wanted to do something everyone can relate to the lyrics in the song so…(laughing)

You will be playing important indie festival this summer – Liverpool Calling with all the hottest acts on the circuit: Sheafs, Soeur, False Heads, Himalayas, Strange Bones or Emily Capell. What do you prefer: large stages or intimate venues?

 

The Racket performing live in Liverpool on 19th of April (supporting Trampolene). Picture by Tom Adam https://www.instagram.com/tomadampics

Callum: Definitely the small ones. Getting loads of energy in front of us in a small room is something special. Honestly one of the best feeling you’ll ever have. At the same time though, we’ve not played many “big” stages yet. From what we’ve done so far, I’d definitely choose the little scenes any day.

Michael: There’s no feeling like playing to a packed tiny room. People falling on stage and knocking mic stands over. I think when we’ve played the bigger venues, I don’t like being more than a step away from the rest of the band.

Dom: Playing intimate venues is great. Being so close to the audience allows you to feed off their energy and excitement, it’s a great feeling being in that moment. Playing bigger venues is something I’m looking forward to doing more because I think it becomes more of a challenge then A test to see if we can get what we want to say across to a bigger audience.

Colby: It’s always nice playing in front of new people at festivals and getting out there with your music but there’s nothing like a small gig with the fans that follow you to every gig. They always put on a good show for us to watch while we’re playing. We never mind them watching us!

The new single “Know It For A Fact” has received rave reviews and is promoted on BBC Introducing Merseyside. We have to admit it is incredibly powerful track, which surely will start mosh pits. You are one of few bands that manage to bring the fury and dynamics from the live performance onto the record without losing an edge. Any secrets to your recordings?

Callum: The last single was recorded live with hardly any takes and minimal over dubs. I think that makes it sound exciting. This time, we have done it differently. We worked with Al Groves at The Motor Museum and he has done an amazing job. I think just the amount of time we spent getting the best, most exciting, angry drum take possible made everything else a lot easier. Full day for the drums for one song!

Dom: I think it’s just a case of spending enough time on getting great takes and getting the sound right. I was definitely conscious of putting the same amount of energy into the recording as I do when playing live and hopefully that’s something that come across. Al Groves, who we worked with on “Know It For A Fact”, has done a great job and it’s his input and ideas that have made it what it is.

Colby: There’s no real secrets to how we record our records. We just go into the studio knowing what we want the song to sound like. For “Know It For A Fact”, we knew we had to do a powerful recording, because that’s how the song comes across live. It is important for us that it should come across exactly the same when you are listening to the track at home.

The band performing live at the Magnet Liverpool on 4th of February. Picture by John Hollingsworth https://www.johnhollingsworth.biz/

On 9th of June 2018 you will be playing at the legendary Sunflower Lounge. Is it your first time performing in Birmingham? What can we expect during the show?

Callum: I never been to Birmingham before but expect a set of fast, loud rock and roll tunes. It’s also a Saturday night so expect a lot of drinking to get done! (laughing)

Michael: We’ve only ever been to Birmingham New Street station on our first trip to London as the band, so to us it’s a new experience. You’ll have to show us some good pubs for before the show! As for the gig, expect some poor attempts at Brum accents in between songs. (laughing)

Dom: It is our first time in Birmingham and I’m really looking forward to it. I think what people can expect is just a lot of energy and a lot more sweat. We’re going to put everything into it and show people why they should be paying attention to us.

Colby: As others said, we have never played Birmingham before. I’m expecting a good night, plenty of drinking. We play every gig loud and fast so the crowd should love it

This tour is your first as a headliner. You will be playing dates all over the country across the month of June, ending with a gig in Liverpool. Is there anything you want to do, any places you want to visit?

Callum: It’ll be good to go back to our favourite pubs in different cities like The Harley in Sheffield, Good Mixer in London, just as long as Sunday morning, we’re in The Bradley in Widnes!

Michael: I’m looking forward to London. We know there has been demand for a gig down there for a while, so that’s set to be a good one. Sheffield is always fun. Finishing the tour in Liverpool to our crowd will be the perfect end!

Dom: I’m just looking forward to visiting new cities, new venues and playing for new people. We’ll be out of our comfort zone. It’s our first headline tour so I’m just buzzing off that.

Colby: Really looking forward to headlining each night. The one I’m looking forward to the most is probably Sheffield. We had a really good time last time we played there and hopefully we will have the same great atmosphere again.

The band performing live at the Magnet Liverpool on 4th of February. Picture by John Hollingsworth https://www.johnhollingsworth.biz/

Last obligatory question: where do you see yourselves in five years’ time. We predict Pyramid Stage at Glasto. Your picks?

Callum: Well, The Pyramid Stage is the big one for me, always has been! I think as long as we’re still together playing music we love, whatever that be at that time is the most important. Right now, who we are, and what we’re doing is perfect and the future is looking bright for us.

Dom: As long as we’re still together, playing the music we want to play and enjoying it, then I think I’ll be sound, I’m also ambitious and the thought of playing bigger venues and bigger and better gigs and doing all the major festivals definitely motivates me. I want us to be successful and to not only be around in five years but for people to know who we are.

Colby: (laughing) Probably jail for strangling Mike at some point!

You can learn more about The Racket by visiting their social media pages:

Management: https://www.culturecity.co.uk/the-racket/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheRacketMusicUK/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/theracketuk
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theracketmusic/

More articles about the band:
http://liverpoolnoise.com/band-feature-the-racket-widnes-music/
https://hotvox.co.uk/artists/racket

Please come back soon as we will have interesting interviews and reviews coming up shortly!
Have a good week and don’t forget to drop us a message or leave a comment.

xoxox
Rita and Malicia