Band of the Day: Ignitemares

Ignitemares featured on the Tony Hawk tribute album we reviewed recently. Turns out they actually do their own thing as well. Who knew? Well, you do now…

Simple things first – where are you guys from?

South and West Wales

How did you meet?

Kayleigh (Vocalist / Guitarist) and Matt (Bassist) met in school when they were only 12 years old, and met Rob (Drums) in college in 2006. We all did Music Technology, and the rest (as they say) is history.

How long have you been playing as a band?

Performing under the name “Ignitemares” It’s only been a year, although all three of us were in a previous band called Grim Citizens from 2014 – 2016, and we also had a small band when we were teenagers back in 2006 / 2007. Regardless of the years and what changes in our lives, we seem to find each other again!

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

We were originally called “Faster On Fire” (named after an alkaline trio lyric) but an American band managed to beat us to release online under the same name, so we had to change. We’d paid for a logo, and loved the imagery and branding we were going for (a brain on fire) so we wanted the new name to fit the same idea as we felt it represented the anxious throw back feel we were going for musically. We kept passing ideas relating to brains / minds and fire and just got nowhere until Kayleigh pitched the idea to her partner, who happens to be an English teacher, who paused, thought for all of two seconds, and went “Ignitemares? you know, like igniting your nightmares?” and it clicked instantly. Couldn’t consider any other names after that. It was perfect.

What are your influences?

Alkaline Trio, Reuben, Misfits, The Offspring, blink-182, The Damned, Tsunami Bomb, Against Me! and loads of others.

Describe your music. What makes you unique?

Our music has comfortable catchy pop punk sensibilities, but always pushes for more with plays on dynamics, intricate or face punching bass lines, strange chord shapes, and quirky lyrical imagery. We jump from traditional fast punk and humour to politics or darker, introspective emo rock numbers. We struggle to pick a genre, we’re constantly fighting in each song to get as much as we can out of it. Our music is relentless, familiar, yet surprising.

Do you have any particular lyrical themes?

a lot of our songs focus on issues with mental health and identity, we also have a few songs that tackle politics (both seriously and satirically) and some of our songs are just a bit silly. We’re either deadly serious or full of cheese and we have no real interest in finding a middle ground yet. Our first two releases, “Letters To Lauras” and “Bombs and Promises” are a perfect example of that strange juxtaposition.

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

Thanks to COVID we’ve had a lot less shows than we’d like. We’d only started properly live in September so it’s somewhere around 10? maybe 12 shows? Our live shows are quite energetic. Matt, our bassist, is light on his feet and bounces about the stage like a small animal on crack, Kayleigh on vocals and guitar has to be quite mic bound but makes up for it with stage banter and Rob on drums is an expressionless viking beating the kit to death. We’re incredibly tight live, we don’t play anything we don’t know back to front, and our set lists, outfits, on stage gear etc  is all quite thought out. We don’t like surprises, we don’t particularly like ‘winging it’, we like to be the best we can be every single time.

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

We all have different wild stories from various bands over the years, but in our old band we were in the middle of a Misfits cover when a huge mosh pit broke out (happy days!) and some kid ended up being rushed to hospital because he broke his collarbone. Felt a bit like a badge of honour to have accidentally caused an injury with our live show!

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

Kayleigh – Fender Telecaster Modern Player, Orange amps.

Matt – Cassidy Bluesville BVB351, Rotosound strings, Trace Elliot Amps

Rob – Pearl drums and hardware, Roc n Soc throne, Sabian Cymbals – AAX/HH, Wincent 5a Black sticks and tone gel and Aquarian heads.

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

On July 3rd we released our second single “Bombs and Promises”. It was recorded, produced, released and filmed at home during lockdown and was part of a songwriting challenge from a local promoter. They gave song titles you had to write to, and “Bombs and Promises” sounded like an old Green Day anti-USA song, so that’s what we wrote. It’s very tongue in cheek and was done as an experiment more than anything else, with fantastic results! so far it’s been well reviewed and received and we’re super happy with it.

What are your plans for the next 6 months or so?

Depending on lockdown issues, we have some gigs lined up and we have a lot of material we’ve been working on separately that we’d like to work on together – our plan is to record an EP soon so the next six months will probably be spent working on material and seeing what makes the cut, between shows of course. We also have another single and professional video ready to release soon called “San Junipero” which is super exciting.

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’ve played with Boxcat a lot and we adore them, so they would be our first choice for opening. As for who we’d love to be main support for, realistically a band like Havelocke would be amazing, but if we’re talking pie in the sky style wishes and dreams we’d say Alkaline Trio. I mean screw it why not right?!

Ignitemares: facebook | twitter | instagram | bandcamp | spotify

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