Heading to the wilds of Wigan today. Say hello to Only the Righteous…
Simple things first – where are you guys from?
We all live all over the North-West, rehearse in Wigan, but to make things easy we call ourselves a Manchester band.
How did you meet?
Andy (guitar) and Mark (drums) started the band by connecting on joinmyband.com. Mark knew James (vocals) from a previous band they were in together called Her Last Goodbye. Charles (guitar+vocals) was their photographer for the previous band and actually started out life with OTR as a photographer too. Finally, Jake was the very first bass player we auditioned and was eventually added to the band to complete the current line-up.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
It turns out that is almost impossible to answer – we’ve rowed about this a few times now, and spoken to previous members who’ve had to move on to different projects whilst we were getting ourselves off the ground – and we cannot come up with a definitive answer as to where the name OTR came from – it’s a biblical reference – it’s a movie – it’s an an acknowledgement that we’re not at all what’s implied … But where we got the name ?… We actually can’t agree
What are your influences?
We’ve all got various different music tastes but I’d have to say some of the main influences for our sound stretch from Noughties Metalcore/Post-Hardocre legends Funeral For a Friend moving to the more modern sounds of Architects with a sprinkling of nu-metal from the likes of Slipknot in there too. You’d have to listen to our stuff yourself, everyone hears different things and different influences
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
Like we mentioned, we’re a band with varied music tastes and we’ve got almost a decade in our age range, so really it’s the melding of a range of modern and nostalgic sounds that makes our music unique in the scene at the moment.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
All our lyrics are penned by our main vocalist James Barnes, he draws on a range of his personal experiences surrounding loss, depression and relationships and is influenced a lot by classic literature, see our single “Late Nights With Bukowski”.
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
Live shows are why we do this, we love performing in front of friends, fans and new people alike. We always give it our all, we’ll play a tiny basement show like we were headlining Wembley. We’ve recently streamlined our set, making use of interludes and backing tracks to give a bigger sense of atmosphere and performance and tie our set into one coherent experience rather than just a number of songs played together. We want people watching our shows to feel the emotion and enjoy themselves as much as we do.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
When we supported Napoleon Andy decided to stage dive into a sparse crowd and ended up on the deck
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
We’re all self-confessed gearheads and our rigs are our babies, whether it’s Mark with his Mapex Saturn kit and Paiste cymbals or Andy and his Epiphone Les Paul Prophecy. All guitars including bass go through Orange Amplifiers and into Blackstar/Orange cabs. Charles favours an ESP 330 for live performance and Jake is a fan of the Ibanez Soundgear series of basses, currently employing an SR500 for live and recording duties.
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
We’ve just released our lead single “What We Could Have Been” from our debut EP Severance (dropping in mid-November). We’ll be releasing another single/music video before the EP drops so we’re pushing all of these things at the moment, culminating in a small run of UK dates at the end of November (29th November – 1st December, Sheffield, Southampton, Treforest and Manchester)
What are your plans for 2019/20?
Like I said before, we’ve got a small run of dates coming up at the end of November so we’re stoked for that, we’ve not been on the road in ages and it’ll be a a great opportunity for us to spend some time together and meet loads of new people. Our other focus for the rest of this year is to write, write, write. We love the writing process (if a little stressful at times) and exploring new genres, with the aim to be releasing our first full-length album at some point in 2020. We’re just excited to have our noses to the grindstone creating new material.
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 could all say we’d love to support massive bands like Bring Me & Architects, but honestly I think we’d love to support some bands we’ve already played with and have started to get some more traction recently. Bands like Loathe, Lotus Eater and TheCityIsOurs are all great bands and we’d loved to be with them on any bill. Similarly there’s loads of other great local bands out there like us that we’d love to have on before us, the lads in Cvscade are another Manchester post-hardcore band, we love them to pieces and they’re tight live performers.