We hope you like pink, with this promo shot… Quite nice for a Sunday, though! Welcome today’s Band of the Day, Paperfriend…
Dean: We’re from Maidstone, a pretty nice place in Kent that doesn’t have a particularly big music scene.
How did you meet?
Andy: At secondary school.
Matt: We all had a keen interest in music and have kept this up throughout our friendship.
How long have you been playing as a band?
Dean: Nearly four years now.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
Dean: There’s no real backstory here. We’re massive fans of Biffy Clyro and they have a B-side called “Paperfriend”. We specifically wanted a one word name so people could actually remember it, so we nicked the name from that song!
What are your influences?
Dean: I listen to a lot of alternative rock, like Biffy Clyro, Pulled Apart by Horses and Arcane Roots. Over the last year or so I’ve gone back in time and listened to stuff from the early to mid noughties, such as Jimmy Eat World and Thursday, and I think this is reflected in our music.
Andy: As a drummer, my influences are Alan White (Oasis), Lars Ulrich (Metallica), Dave Grohl (Nirvana) and Ben Johnston (Biffy Clyro), among others.
Matt: I got properly into music with my love of Johnny Cash and trying to impersonate him, and also through the Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, whose music also pushed me to want to learn guitar to play and sing their songs. Later I became influenced by bands such as You Me At Six and blink-182.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
Dean: We’ve been told there’s a nostalgic quality to our music, but at the same time we’re always pushing to do something new. All three band members contribute to vocals too, you don’t get too many drummers that sing. We record all our music ourselves as it gives us complete control both creatively and from a technical standpoint. We also don’t have a booking agent or manager. We’re proud of being a band that does everything ourselves and gives us that underdog mentality that we believe makes us different from most bands.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
Dean: We talk a lot about mental health. All three of us have suffered with it at some point and we want people to know that it’s OK to talk about it. In 2019 it shouldn’t have the stigma attached to it that it still does. I think this will become more apparent in our music as the year progresses.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
Dean: We’re quite an expressive band on stage so there’s a lot of energy and chemistry for the crowd to enjoy. We’re about to play our fiftieth show on March 15th at The Harp Restrung in Folkestone, which is going to be huge! We’ve got two quality supports in Vegasettes and Highgarden.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
Dean: I blew out one of my knees jumping off a stage a few months ago, and I’m still recovering from it!
Andy: The wildest thing I’ve seen – musicians jumping into the audience from a 7ft tall speaker. I did a jump from a large drum riser at one point.
Matt: I used to work at music festivals and I would say these were the wildest live shows I’ve seen. On one occasion I saw women mud wrestling close to where a band was playing.
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
Dean: I play a Fender Telecaster through a Marshall head and cab. My pedalboard consists of a Boss TU-3 tuner, a Boss NS-2 noise suppressor, a Mooer Green Mile as a clean boost, a Fender Pugilist Distortion for my heavier tones and a Boss DD-500 delay for the clean and ambient stuff.
Andy: A Sonor drum kit with a mixture of Paiste and Stagg DH cymbals. I use Vic Firth sticks and gloves.
Matt: I play a mixture of Cort and Ibanez basses, a SansAmp bass DI driver, Boss TU-3 and DS-1.
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
Matt: Our upcoming single “Sertraline, pt. II” is out on March 1st, and the show we mentioned earlier is on March 15th.
What are your plans for 2019?
Dean: We’re working on more new music and we’ve got more gigs to announce very soon!