Is it Monday again already? Blimey, time flies when you’re having fun. Here’s something to take your mind off it…
Birmingham. I moved around for a few years but have found my way back home, for now.
How did you meet?
G H O S T S as a ‘recording artist’ is kinda a one-man-band deal. I have two drummers who come into the studio with me – Henrik Fossum and Tom Gittins. I’ve known Tom since I was 16 and he also produces G H O S T S. Henrik is one of my favourite drummers to work with – he comes and records with me when he’s not touring.
As a live entity, I have some cool people around me who I really trust – Tom, Joel and Luke.
How long have you been playing as a band?
Man, I started writing songs for this project like two years ago. I put the first single out last September and we’re just now starting live rehearsals.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
I just liked the simplicity of it – it didn’t feel pretentious or contrived. I guess there is a ‘meaning’ behind it for me, like the symbol that we use, but to explain either would make it less interesting. I like people to form their own opinions.
What are your influences?
NIN is a big one. Trent’s approach and work ethic as much as the music itself. Also Tears For Fears, Brian Eno, Stone Temple Pilots, Daniel Lanois, Saul Williams, Jane’s Addiction, Talk Talk, Tim Muddiman, The Sisters of Mercy, Bauhaus, Filter, Smashing Pumpkins, SONOIO…
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
I’ve always liked the juxtaposition of beautiful melody and harmony delivered using fucked up sounds. It’s still very band-centric for the most part but there’s a lot of electronic elements, distortion and noise in there too. I like seeing how far I can take things in that sense – just how horrible can I make this sound while still being beautiful.
In terms of what makes it unique? People will have to decide for themselves.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
It’s a diary. I started this project when I was in a pretty dark place mentally, I didn’t have an outlet for the way I was feeling and it was killing me. I’d never written lyrics before, always communicating through music. But in this case, it wasn’t enough. I had to find a voice. So yeah, a lot of it is simply how I see the world. “Fading Out” (our current single) was a little different, there were some themes mixed in from books like American Psycho.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
We haven’t yet but it’s coming. We’re aiming to be out there by September.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
As I earn my living by playing guitar for other people, I generally have to behave! But that’s about to change with this project.
Whenever I think about how a live show should be, I think about NIN at Woodstock 1994 or early Marilyn Manson shows. Dangerous, unpredictable and vital.
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
It’s a mixed bag. We’re going to be running triggers and a SPD-SX alongside the live drums. We’re running certain samples we can’t physically recreate live from a playback machine but then we have two guitars, a bass and three guys who sing.
Tom uses the Axe-Fx, I’m a pedals and amps guy. The aim is to make as much noise as possible. What could go wrong?
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
We just put out our third music video (fourth single) that we’ve done with Morgan Tedd (Erase Creative). It’s something Morgan and I are really proud of and it gives people a good idea of things to come. I’d like people to check that out.
What are your plans for 2019?
Going live is the main focus now. I have the album almost finished but I have no intention of putting that out until we’re more established as a live band. We’ll probably put out another music video before the year is out though.
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!
Oh man. I’m not sure I’d dare support NIN but that would be the dream. I’d have my friend Andy Spillane’s project Arkks opening the show, they are killer and would set the bar high.