Band of the Day: Regulus

We last chatted to Regulus about a year back on the run-up to and then shortly after Bloodstock 2016. Time for catch-up…

Simple things first – where are you guys from?

Mostly Sheffield, with one member from Lincoln.

How did you meet?

Blind luck! We didn’t know each other at all before the formation of Regulus. We were all in other bands that were reaching their ends simultaneously when a chance Facebook post brought us together for a jam and the rest is history. We found Martyn later, though, after our original bassist left; we met him through his other band, Phoenician, in which he plays guitar.

How long have you been playing as a band?

Coming up to five years now.

Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?

When we first formed, the psychedelic/”space rock” element of our music was a bit more forefront, so we were looking for something that represented that without being too obvious. Regulus is one of the brightest stars in the sky and it’s a satisfying word, so it fit well. We only discovered later that it’s actually a cluster of four stars which orbit around each other, making it appear “more than the sum of its parts”. A fitting metaphor for our music and the way we operate as a band.

What are your influences?

Too many to mention! I guess from the big names within our genre we’re influenced by guys like Clutch, The Sword, Down, Orange Goblin, Church of Misery, Baroness, Mastodon and a bunch of others, but we’re pretty diverse… Luke listens to a lot of prog, for example, while Joe’s into doom and psych, Oz has a soft spot for mainstream hard-rock and electronic styles of music and Martyn’s a producer, so his ears are constantly bombarded by every style you can think of!

We feel it’s important to keep your tastes wide open and it comes naturally to allow those influences into our music. We’re also finding more and more these days that our biggest influences are actually our peers; we’re hugely inspired by tons of names on the UK underground scene right now and draw a lot of influence from them.

Describe your music. What makes you unique?

Probably diversity, I guess. “Stoner rock” is such a wide genre, incorporating everything from bluesy stuff all the way through to the edge of metal and doom; and we love it all, it would be counter-productive not to let bits of all of it into our music. Some bands do one thing really well and that’s cool, but we try and touch on a bit of everything while keeping it tied together with a unifying groove. Whether or not we achieve that is up to the listener!

Do you have any particular lyrical themes?

Not really. Luke likes to tell a story or paint a scene with his lyrics, but it’s usually a metaphor for something real in our lives; taking experiences people can relate to and putting them in a fantastical setting. The website Encyclopaedia Metallum describes our lyrical themes as “Personal struggles, Occultism, Science fiction”. That’s probably about right! Oz (guitar) writes the odd song here and there too, and his lyrics tend to be a bit more straightforward and gritty. Some of the newer material is a lot more literal and heartfelt, as we’ve all been through a lot in our personal lives since we formed, so we feel we’ve got more to say.

What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?

Loud, sweaty and mental! We genuinely have a great time on stage and people are always telling us after our shows how well that translates to the crowd. We try not to take ourselves too seriously and our music’s pretty upbeat for stoner rock (barring the odd doomy bit), so we’re not trying to be all serious and angsty. For us it’s all about just sharing a great time with the crowd. We’ve played around 150 shows so far.

What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?

There’s the time Luke played a solo from a tree… The guy who tried to lick all the sweat off Oz when he came off stage… Or the time Joe played a full two songs with a bollock hanging out… Ask us at a show and we’ll tell the full stories!

What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?

We’re pretty nerdy on gear so we could go into loads of detail, but here’s the basics: Luke’s into PRS, MatAmp and tons of pedals; Oz likes Epiphones with fat pickups and Orange amps with almost no pedals at all; Martyn plays Fender and G&L basses through a SansAmp pre-amp into whichever of his heads is currently in one piece! Joe’s playing a one-up two-down Ludwig kit and Paiste cymbals, he likes massive dimensions on all of them.

What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?

We released our second album, Quadralith, in March, through Off Yer Rocka Recordings; there’s a couple more singles and videos still to release from it and we’re gigging around the UK as much as possible in support of it. We’re really proud of the record, it’s a huge step up for us in production and the songs really shine as a result. Martyn (bass) did a first rate job producing it, we’re thrilled to have him with us. It’s available from our BandCamp page and the label’s webstore.

What are your plans for the rest of 2017?

We’ve got a couple of great gigs coming up and more being booked: HRH Doom vs. Stoner at the O2 Academy in Sheffield will be a highlight for sure, there’s also Rockwich (Northwich) which is going to be a blast, and a bunch of others around the UK, notably Manchester, London and a few hometown shows. We’re always writing too, so there’s a lot of new songs on the go in the practice room which you might start hearing live soon.

If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!

We’d support Clutch, for sure! They’re without a doubt the band that we adore most unanimously, they’re a huge inspiration in terms of both their music and their work ethic and have been a deep part of us all from day one. We’d have our tour-mates and good bros Battalions (Hull) open the show; if you don’t know these guys yet, get on it! Their new album Moonburn has just been released and it is mind-blowingly good.

From previous Band of the Day Fractions: Fractions calculated that they spend 1/3 of their funds on equipment and 2/5 on alcohol. What fraction of their funds do they spend on equipment and alcohol?


From another BotD, Serpent Lord: Do you think there must be a limit for musicians when it comes to defining, or even changing their style/genre?

I think people get too bogged down in genres, they’re just a means with which to describe what you’re hearing. Ultimately it’s up to the listener to decide what genre a band falls into, if any, and if they wanna argue amongst themselves about which particular niche something belongs to, that’s their business. I have a lot more respect for bands that defy genre rather than conform to it, and even more for those who can successfully move between sounds from album to album.

And from Hey Charlie: What is your dream venue to play?

Probably Duna Jam. Rocking out on a beach would be sick!

Can you give us a question to ask a future Band of the Day?

What’s your pre-show ritual/what’s the weirdest you’ve heard of? Ours consists of cranking “The Mob Goes Wild” by Clutch as we drive into whichever town we are playing and copious amounts of stretching before we go on stage!

Regulus: official | facebook | twitter | bandcampyoutube

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