Tag Archives: Interviews

A Chat With : The Vex

We caught up with Jacko from the Vex to have a chat about the release of their new ‘The Vex’ EP and to see what makes them tick.

Who are The Vex and how did the band come about?

The Vex are 4 people who create sonic noise with guitars and drums. We love heavy riffs and we love rocksteady.

You have released your new EP tell us a bit about that and what can we expect to hear from it?
‘The Vex’ EP is our debut vinyl which we’re very excited about. It’s a single sided 12 inch with 5 tracks. Sonically it goes from punk to rock n roll to heavy reggae to dub. We sing about a young girls gallantry, existence and freedom of speech.
Your style smashes punk rock against sharp-edged Jamaican rhythms and stomp ready beats how do you come up with these catchy tracks and what is your writing style?
Thanks for noticing! Yeah we love these styles of music so when we jam it always sounds like a mash up of the two, we think they compliment each other perfectly too. There’s normally a riff that its based around a song will come out of that.
Do you have a favourite track on the EP and why?
It changes from moment to moment, but right now I’m loving the coolness of ‘Darker Shade Of Black’.
You have a track called ‘Satori’ which is the  Zen-Buddhist term for awakening, or enlightenment how did you discover this term and what brought about writing the song?
I am a massive fan of Alan Watts’ talks (YouTube him). He shined a light on eastern philosophies Toaism, Zen-Buddhism etc, its a very enjoyable way of looking at the world. Worrying is pointless.
You guys definitely like to face the issues of injustice with tracks like ‘Education Kills’ which references the bravery of Malala Yousafzai, shot in the head by the Pakistan Taliban while campaigning for women’s rights to education and ‘Darker Shade Of Black’ a defiant nod to freedom of speech, is this appealing to your following or are these issues close to your heart?
We’ll always write about issues that strike a chord with us. With Malala Yousafzai I remember being really impacted by her story I wrote the song almost immediately.
Whats a live show with you guys like?
Loud, skanking, singing, dancing and hopefully make you think about what you wanna do in life and give you the nerve to go do it.
Have you any live shows coming up?
Wednesday 8th May Rich Rix. The Finsbury in July
 Any Irish dates planned?
Not as yet, but would love to get down to the south and west coasts of Ireland, Kerry is on the list.
Whats next for The Vex?
More riffs, more messages, more EPs, more vinyl, more spreading the good vibes!

Jacko x

You can get  ‘The Vex’ EP here https://thevex.bandcamp.com/

Stream ‘Living In The’ below

A Chat With : The Revellions

We caught up with James Lister from The Revellions after their single launch show at The Grand Social, Dublin, to talk about the new release and what we can expect from the new album.

Tell us a bit about yourselves, how did you all meet and how did the band start?

The band started many years ago and we’ve evolved over the years. Members have come and gone, myself and Michael the drummer have been there from the start. I met Juan who’s from Spain he plays bass we met about a year ago and we just kind of worked very well. Another friend Sean he plays rhythm guitar he came in to fill in and after a while we met Anna who’s a crazy woman and she plays the keys for us. We met Ed later on. Eds only been in the band about a year. We’ve been working on a record since then and we’ve almost completed it, it’s in the stages of being mixed and tonight we will be launching our single ‘False Hope ‘so any spare cash head to the record store and buy it.

There are 6 of you in the band does that make for crazy rehearsals with 6 opinions to hear, does democracy play a big part?

No – well it can, but not really. I do all the songwriting myself so a lot of the arrangements come from me. I suppose you give a bit of freedom to everybody in the band but at the end of the day the structures and stuff would be written by myself. Someone I think in every band has to have a stronger pull so the band actually works. But everyone that’s involved in our music is always well experienced. If we use any session players brass or anything they would be very good. We had a great backing singer come onto the album called Gina Rose, beautiful voice. Opinions are quite easy going, the lads are easy going, so there’s a lot of good continuity in the band. Everyone likes each other more or less, you have your ups and downs like everybody but I don’t know, it is what it is.

You have a diverse sound of Garage Surf Rock mixed with psychedelia and a bit of grunge at times does this mixed sound reflect different influences from different members of the band?

No. We listen to a lot of music though. My wife is Spanish she’s from Valencia so I’ve a lot of influence from worldwide music. I don’t try and get ourselves too into a niche we try and make it our own – our own stamp on any music that we like from any style.We do have a lot of influences from 60’s and 70’s dare I say 90’s but it’s always kind of keeping it flowing and keeping us all interested as members of the band. So we try not to focus entirely on one kind of style just so we can enjoy playing.

You guys have a knack for writing fun foot stomping tunes, Talk us through your music writing process, how you come up with the slick riffs and catchy hooks and melodies?

I write the song i bring it down we choose the instruments and sounds we want to use we don’t try and complete it all in a couple of nights it kind of evolves over weeks sometimes months, there’s no technique there’s no science to it, it works or it doesn’t really.

Where does your inspiration come from?

Everyday life, you know people, friends, stories nothing specific I like to take whatever goodness I can out of any situation, anything like that enlightens me I suppose.

You have released your new single ‘False Hope’ with b side Carrie-Ann tell us about those tracks?

‘False Hope’ – I was trying to write a song that I suppose I’m giving out a little bit at the situation I was in at the time I wrote it. About being told I have to do something and not wanting to do it and trying to resist. It doesn’t always work out that way but the song is kind of dragging me in that direction and that’s what I wanted to write the song about. Its false hope and you know an illusion basically that people offer you that’s not entirely true.

‘False Hope’ is trippy, floaty and groovy but appears a little tighter and more refined than your previous albums how do you feel you guys have progressed and developed from “The Revellions” and “Give it Time” albums?

Yeah I was trying to make a cleaner more suitable sound for a larger audience. I’m still writing for me but I wanted to write it more easier for people to grab onto because garage rock and roll music, it’s quite a little niche it’s quite a pigeon hole to be honest. But music wise I’ve evolved since I’ve started making records and working with engineers. Working in studios also has changed. I also know now a lot more how to get something I want to get like before I would have been told or supervised or assisted into going a direction where it maybe worked but maybe wasn’t exactly where I was trying to get in the first place, lack of knowledge on my own behalf and not being able to get there but now it’s a little bit different. We’d be pretty quick in getting the sound we want and we don’t have to be told. The second album I recorded myself and mixed and produced myself. So this album I didn’t have a lot of outside opinions and we got a great guy called Garry up in Red Lake Studios, he’s a great guy, great producer, great engineer place is lovely, nice wooden cabin up there you can get lost out there or whatever you want to do. You can stay out there for weeks no one will bother you.

Where did the idea for the cover art for ‘False Hope’ come from?

My wife is a designer so she’s quite reasonable, being my wife I can give out to her better than I can give out to any other designer when she see’s this she will definitely agree. She’s a saint and if I need something changed she will change it for me but she always has a better look at it then I would. Designing covers is not really something that i’m tuned into I’d like to pretend I was but it wouldn’t be in my forte. But she’s very good and I do trust her with our designs and stuff like that.

Your new album will be released later this year what can we expect from that?

There’s a bit of rock and roll in it and a bit of psychedelic in it and a bit of everything to be honest. I don’t think there is one specific sound – the sounds that we bring into it makes it kind of.., it’s not a one trick pony going home. I enjoyed making it I still haven’t finished we are still doing a bit of brass next month and a few songs need to be mixed but the way it’s shaping up at the moment I think it’s going to be fantastic.

Would you say you guys are at your best live?

Yes and no I love working in the studio. Live is great but I love working in the studio you have a lot more freedom. I do like live performances but making music and performing live is too separate things. You can do a lot of experiments that you couldn’t do on stage which really kind of helps bring the record to a make-believe place. Whereas live can be quite direct and in your face and you can make it work and try and put as much energy in as possible but yeah it’s too separate things.

What is your Favourite song to perform live and why?

My favourite song to perform I didn’t get to perform tonight which is unfortunate it will be on the record so It’s called ‘I Know It’s Mine’ It’s a cool tune we didn’t play it tonight but it will be on the record

You have toured in Germany, France, United Kingdom, Norway and Spain what was that like for you and do you have a favourite ?

No they are all great usually we do them all a second run so it kind of feels exactly like we are not necessarily in France or Germany. We are in a van and we do the show we drive for 6 or 8 hours or whatever. It’s not the same as travelling or going on holidays. So we wake up in a different town or whatever we do the show but it’s always great, the reaction the crowd and the people are amazing they are always welcoming and it’s always nice to see what way people are in different towns. It’s a lot different to this country. I always find people here are stand offish in Ireland whereas in France or Germany they are very in your face. It’s better I really like that but Irish kind of like, they don’t trust you for a little bit eventually they get to know you better and they come a bit closer but it’s a lot harder, a lot more harder work to get them in whereas in France or Germany everyone just stands there and it’s great they are just mad for it.

Have you had any bizarre experiences while you were touring or on stage?

Yeah many…. well I remember one time in France the Farfisa Organ was carried through the crowd and about 5 people with the keyboard player started playing i think i was in the crowd. I don’t know what way I was with the guitars it was just crazy I wouldn’t even call it music it was just noise – organised noise but it was pretty cool. But what’s crazy – it’s a live performance, people are supposed to get indulged you’d never get that over here people are a little bit afraid to loose their inhibitions maybe. We’ve had loads I remember (laughs) ah no there is a few I don’t even wanna say they could be looking at this, no I better not but yeah we have had a few.

Do you find it difficult to get the audience to engage?

In Ireland it is but everywhere else they are a bit more in your face It’s almost like they’ve paid in and they want their money’s worth it’s different over here it can be challenging you always see that guy in the back tapping his foot maybe then after a while you might get a leg shake or something then eventually a couple people dancing, it takes a few and then it’s like an infectious disease. If someone does it then it spreads.

What advice do you have for people who want to form their own bands?

Don’t (laughs) – it’s a life of misery. No it has its challenges 80% of a band is about waiting around talking and waiting to play if you’re doing tours. 20% of the time is playing – the rest of it is down to airports and the back of vans so be prepared for that. It’s not always on stage and craziness it can be quite challenging depending on the person as well. You need to be quite strong mentally and capable to do that for long periods of time especially if you’re fond of drink you won’t last long.

What’s next for The Revellions?

We are playing Whelans next month. We are doing Bare In The Woods Festival which is coming up soon. We are recording some brass next month. We have some brass players coming in to do a bit of session work for us and we are just continuing to do what we do. There will be a tour later on in the year and we will probable do Germany and Spain France and that scene again hopefully in maybe September.

Any last Words?

Go to the shop and buy my single ‘False Hope’

Stream ‘False Hope’ below

A Chat With : We Were Glue

We caught up with We Were Glue ahead of the release of their new single ‘Birthday’ which will be released on May 12th to get to know them a little better and to discuss all things music in their world.

Tell us a bit about yourselves?
Hi there we are We Were Glue. We are four guys who study music and thought it would be fun to start a band. Our members range from purveyors of discount baked goods to adventurers in the realms of rave.

How did you all meet?
We all met in the first few weeks of uni just in classes and that, nothing awfully exciting. If you’d like we have an alternate narrative involving dragons, yahtzee and more custard than I care to mention.

How did you decide on the name We Were Glue?
Well we used to be called Glue, but then we needed a new name because we started getting angry messages from other bands called glue, saying that they’ve played Manchester Academy 3 so have bagsies. So yeah when we needed a new name we didn’t wanna change much from Glue, so we went with We Were Glue.

You released your debut single ‘My Girl’ last year how was that for you finally having something out there for everyone to hear?
It is really nice, it’s good being able to just direct people to spotify when they ask if our music is online. It’s even nicer when someone just tells you about how they enjoyed it and that kinda thing.

What was it like recording your own song for the first time?
Hard work, especially as for some in the band it was their first experience properly recording Its a process we’re starting to enjoy a lot more now and we’ve been happy will all results so far! We can’t wait to get the new track out there.
You are releasing your new single ‘Birthday’ in May tell us a bit about that track  and how it came about?
Most of our songs come about pretty slowly after a culmination of whatever over the months, then we get hyped about it and release and play shows and all that. On this occasion, there was a mis-remembering of a birthday and low level disruptions occurred.
You guys have a quirky jagged indie sound with catchy energetic riffs and peppy bounce how do you come up with your sound and what is your music writing process?

Its mainly just a conglomeration of everything we all separately like about indie and guitar music in general, sort of distilled down and mashed into a big soup. We then dip our big songwriting ladle in there and see what juicy surprises we can find.

What’s a live show with you guys like?

It probably the nicest way you could ever be physically assaulted by music. We just have a blast on stage and try to involve the crowd as much as we can

What do you guys do in your spare time when you are not making music?

Our lives vary wildly from day to day. For instance, a few days ago, we stayed up until 2am playing Rocket League, whereas the day before we stayed up until 4am playing Rocket League.
Other than that it’s basically just a constant battle to stop ourselves from going to Uncle Sam’s every day of our lives.

Do you have any live shows coming up?

Our next main show is the 12th May at Studio 2 which is our super special single release show which along with us, has a whole host of talented bands on the bill including Quit Now, COLOUR, and the phenomenal Black Pulp. We will also be selling tshirts.

What does the rest of the year have in store for We Were Glue?

Basically more bounciness, more good vibes and definitely more new music.

Follow We Were Glue on Facebook here https://www.facebook.com/wewereglue/

A Chat with : The Hubbards

We caught up with The Hubbards following the release of their new single ‘Just Touch’ to have a chat and get to know them a little better.

So who are the The Hubbards and how did you decide to start a band?

The Hubbards are (in order of self importance): Joe Orlowski, Alex Green, Reuben Driver, Rónan Burns.We’re a boy band. We’re not lads . We went to sports college and started a band cos we were shit at sport.

You have just released your new single ‘Just Touch’ which follows on from your debut EP ‘Cold Cut. ‘Just Touch’ maintains the hazy laid back effortless cool vibe as the EP with a bit more punch and vibrancy, where did the beginnings of this track come to life and what was the process of making it?

The song took ages to develop, actually. Joe had a really simple guitar lick going round his head. We’d play it round and round trying to add more parts. We ended up embracing the simplicity of it which we hope gives it the cool laid back sound. I wish it was effortless.

It’s an insanely catchy track really well formed and crafted, simple witty and instantly likable did you know you had something special when you wrote this track?

We’re pretty hard on ourselves and full of self doubt so it took a few listens out of the studio to admit to each other that we were happy with it. It definitely keeps us productive not getting caught up in whether or not the last track was a banger.

Tell us a bit about making the video for ‘Just Touch’?

It was a truly awful experience. It all sounded so simple when we planned it out after a night out. We were all knackered on the day and found out the houses we wanted to use were like million miles apart. Alex fell over and Rónan had an asthma attack. It took 7 or 8 run throughs and we just had to settle on the last due to sheer exhaustion.

Your tracks are all bright catchy animated tunes with of course lots of fuzz and summer vibes is this a sound you tried to create or does it come organically?

That’s news to us. But great. Maybe it’s a byproduct of us all liking different things, some which is happy clappy Shit. We’re not exactly warm fuzzy people

What’s a live show with The Hubbards like?

You’d have to come and find out for yourself. If you enjoy it half as much as we do you won’t be needing that second white wine spritzer

Do you have a favourite song to perform live if so why?

The last one we’ve written always has an exciting energy to it. But ‘just touch’ in particular really gets us going. It’s great to play songs that people haven’t heard before and seeing them trying to sing along by the end of it

Have you had any bizarre experiences while on tour or on stage?

Last year whilst touring we stayed in what we thought was a B&B in Uxbridge but it turned out to be a hostel for rough men working on roads or something. Anyway we only had one 2 beds and 1 towel between 5 of us. On the plus side Uxbridge was sick and we all got to know each other a little bit better.

You have supported the likes of Augustines and The Pigeon Detectives have you learnt any valuable pointers from any of the acts you have supported?

It’s nice to be around people that are doing what we wanna do and are still good craic. We try do our own thing when we write and when we’re on stage. If it feels good that’s good enough for us

What’s the best advise you have been given?

“Put something on the end of it” Jeremy Kyle

Do you have any advice for anyone who wants to start a band?

See above. But really, just write as much as you can. Throw enough Shit something’ll stick

Do you guys have any plans to come to Ireland for a gig?

Mate we’d love to come to Ireland. Hook us up we’ll be straight on that ferry

What next for The Hubbards can we look forward to some more great tunes?

We’re writing right now and we’ll straight back into the studio when we’ve finished touring. Can’t wait.

In the meantime, get familiar with us, you can download and stream “Just Touch.” Find us on Facebook

Follow The Hubbards on facebook here https://www.facebook.com/thehubbardsband/

Stream ‘Just Touch’ below



A Chat With : Stitch Jones

We caught up with Ross and Watchy from Stitch Jones to have a chat before their set at Fibber Magees in Dublin, to talk about their new album  ‘Echolalia’  and all things Stitch Jones.

You can get their new album ‘Echolalia’ here https://stitchjones.bandcamp.com/album/echolalia

Follow Stitch Jones on Facebook here https://www.facebook.com/stitchjonesmusic/

A Chat With : The Jackobins

We caught up with The Jackobins ahead of their sold out hometown show tonight. To see what they have been up to and what we can look forward to next.

So bring us right back to the beginning for The Jackobins where did the band start and why?
The Jackobins started when Veso wouldn’t take no for an answer, and after what amounted to stalking myself for a few months, I gave in and agreed to form a band with him. I would have formed it earlier, but after arranging to meet up in this shady pub, he was a no show and so I got drunk and ended up talking to some other musicians in there and got sidetracked for a few months. Eventually we got jamming in an old terraced house in Wavertree, where Veso and our old keyboardist John, and original drummer, Arthur all lived together (along with some guy living in the ceiling). I remember our earliest sessions, Arthur would have a full kit set up in the kitchen near the sink, Veso would be sat on the stairs with the guitar, and me and John would be in the bathroom with keys and vocals.

You have had a shift in the lineup, and have welcomed two new members what brought about this?
A band is only as strong as its weakest relationship between any two members, and personalities were clashing with almost everyone having a different idea of how to move forward, and it gets to a point where you realise forcing yourself to be around certain people is not good for either yourself or for them. But out of all the shit that inevitably comes with band politics, something really great has come out in the form of our new members, Tom (bass) and Sean (drums). The drive and ability of the two of them is really inspiring and already in the short time they have been on board, we have moved forwards in ways we just couldn’t have done previously. They are a real pleasure to work with and I am genuinely looking forward to going out on tour with them (and Veso I suppose).

So introduce us to this new lineup of The Jackobins?
As I mentioned above, I am very pleased to announce Sean Burns on drums, and Tom Donoghue on bass, both of them are gifted musicians, but perhaps more importantly, they are sound lads and great fun to be around, this incarnation of the Jackobins is far more relaxed than ever before, but paradoxically, its almost the most productive version of the band to date, and so much creativity is being unlocked.

You’ve been gigging around the UK with many festivals under your belts what has been the highlight so far?
We do love festivals, the atmosphere is just something else, its always hard when someone asks you to pick highlights, but I think we would probably go with Y Not Festival 2016, we had a ball on the This Feeling Stage, the crowds were unreal and we got to hangout with a lot of great bands, the backstage area was messy, it was glorious.

Your singles ‘Waiting For The Sun’, ‘One More Chance’ and ‘Hasty’ have all displayed how you are growing and improving as a band musically. Each track showcasing a new more refined aspect to your sound, ‘Hasty’ being the most recent release, what sparked or led to this more refined sound?

We are constantly exploring our sound, and just when we think we know all the corners, we find another one. Like most bands, we are our own worst critics (we have so many unreleased and unplayed songs), but this motivates us towards better and better records. As I mentioned earlier, since the lineup change, the atmosphere in the band has changed, and this change has manifested itself in a flood of new songs that we are currently working on.

Big anthem blasters and sing along chorus’ seem to be the main feature of your tracks they are catchy and mighty is this what you try to achieve or does it come naturally?
We have never really set out to make a certain sound, we pluck ideas out of the air, and if we like it, we roll with it, and it becomes a Jackobins song. Its funny how you look back and realise you’ve kind of created something without noticing. But that being said, we are fans of big anthemic sounding songs, they can capture an audience in just this most fucking brilliant, special way, they are easily accessible, which is important, because isn’t one of the main miracles of music, the ability to connect with people?
Strong bass lines and dynamic zealous bright guitars are a massive feature and I’m sure a big contributor to why your songs are so infectious where do these riffs and licks come from?
In a word, Veso…. He’s very much our Surge, I have always been blown away by his ability to create these addictive riffs , that whilst demanding attention, leave room for the rest of the song to grow around.

You guys have been quiet lately is this to create anticipation for something big to come?
We have been rebuilding the band in the wake of the lineup changes, and literally haven’t stopped behind the scenes, but probably more importantly, we’ve been taking some time to enjoy being a band again and creating new material.

Have you got plans to release any new music this year?
We have recently been in the studio with Sugarhouse again, recording some new material, we are looking forward to revealing it soon, then we will be back in June recording more again. Our last release was Hasty which was some time ago, which is really depressing… 2016 was a good year on the road for us, but the internal fighting really crashed our creative party.. but now with the changes that have happened, we have got this torrent of ideas and songs bursting out and we cant wait to get them out there.

You have a hometown show this Friday, which is sold out that must feel good?
Playing our hometown is a special treat for us these days, we are here like once or twice a year normally, but they never disappoint! The Magnet where we will be playing is probably our favourite venue in Liverpool and Liverpool crowds are some of the best there are!

What can your fans expect from your upcoming shows?
Lots and lots of new material, along with old fan favorites, the band has changed, and I think people are going to like what they see and hear. Also they can expect a lot of dirty riffs, big vocals and energetic performance.
What are you looking forward to this summer?
We got a tour that starts this week with a Sold Out home show which is always fun. There’s several great festivals announced and plenty more we can’t reveal just yet which we are buzzing about. Particularly we can’t wait to play Sound City and Hope and Glory as it’s on home soil and both festivals have done a stellar job especially when it comes to emerging artists.
Any Irish dates planned?
You’ll have to wait until September, but we really are dying to get over.

You can have a listen to The Jackobins tasty tunes on Spotify here