Headline Act: Tides of Ire

Time to open your ears to another band you may not have heard from before. All the way down in the south of England, Tides of Ire are making a marvellous racket…

Simple things first – where are you guys from?

We’re all from various towns around the Kent coast, but we tell people we’re from Canterbury – It’s easier than explaining the difference between Margate and Ramsgate, or how to get to Hythe from the M20.

How did you meet?

We all got in touch through a website called Join My Band – all of us had just come off the backs of various disintegrating bands, so we all wanted something a little more solid and reliable. It took a good few months to piece together the whole band and a setlist, but it’s been going solidly for a decent amount of time now.

How long have you been playing as a band?

Does the Covid year count? We’ve crossed into our 6th year now since we first got together, but it’s been 5 years since we first took Tides out into the world and played our first show, which was at the Lady Luck in Canterbury sometime in mid-2016.

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

Our founding member and first guitar player, Aidan, told us that it came from us all being near the sea – hence ‘Tides’, and also playing angry music (Ire, irate, etc). It translates to ‘Sea of Fury’, which is partly what inspired the name of our first record, The Burning Sea.

What are your influences?

All of us come from very different musical backgrounds – Mark is naturally quite into his Hip-hop, Sam loves prog and instrumental metal, Leo has always loved classic Nu-metal, etc. Truthfully, I think that translates in our music – Tides is hard to pigeon-hole. There’s no one band we all agree on. Except Gojira!

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Describe your music. What makes you unique?

We’re a modern, British take on a classic genre. Nu-Metal gets a BAD rep, and maybe it deserves to have it. But, we take the bones of the big grooves and hip-hop lyrical delivery and merge it with big, tight riffs to deliver a solid slab of sing-along heavy music. Once you take the gimmicks off of nu-metal there’s a solid structure there, and that’s what we build on.

Do you have any particular lyrical themes?

Like any good lyricist, Mark’s got a lot of great stories and has overcome more than a few personal struggles. He likes to joke that Tides is his therapy, but I think there’s truth to that, and it’s what makes the words so meaningful – You feel the history in them, and relate to them more than you’d like to admit. He shines a light on the part of you that you don’t like to think about.

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

I’ve never seen Mark on a stage. From the moment the first riff hits to the final bow, he’s out there on the floor working with the crowd. What’s unique about our shows is that whilst the band throwing down, Mark’s there’s making sure you’re not just ‘at’ the gig, you feel like you’re part of it. You get caught in the energy and you can’t help but like it.

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

How about sketchiest? We once played a show in a proper hellhole dive bar just outside of London. Right as we were sound-checking, this massive guy with a swastika tattooed on his face walked up in front of us and said ‘If you sound shit, I’ll fucking stab you.’ We didn’t get stabbed it must have sounded alright!

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

Sam on bass uses a Dingwall and Darkglass combo which sounds absolutely deadly in low tunings. Matt uses a heavily modded Solar 7-string with a Line 6 Helix floor unit which lets him do some of the whacky guitar noises you hear on the records. Likewise, New Sam runs a headless Ormsby 7-string, with a Line 6 HD500 Floor unit.

Leo uses whatever drum kit is in the room, and a combination of Paiste, Meinl and Zildjian Cymbals. Mark borrows a microphone, and runs it through a Boss VE-20 which mostly runs its own reverb and loudspeaker-style EQs, mostly to wind up the sound guy. Sorry mate.

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

Part 1 of our Double EP, Echoes & Ghosts! The first half, Echoes, is out now on all reliable streaming services, alongside some awesome T-shirts sporting the record artwork.

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

Part 2 of the EP, Ghosts, is being finalised and released. It’s arguably even better than Echoes, we’re pumped on them both. Aside from that, It’s been a long time since our last tour, and we’re planning another European excursion as soon as we can.

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 love to open for Tetrarch on a British tour. We’ve been following them for years, and they’ve absolutely blown up in 2021. Proof there’s hunger for Nu-metal again!
Who would open? Gotta give a shout to the boys in Crostpaths – they have a great sound that keep us on our toes and they always make sure we have to work that little bit harder to one-up them at show!

Check out 2021’s Headline Act Playlist on Spotify and YouTube

Tides of Ire: facebook | twitter | instagram | spotify | bandcamp | youtube | bigcartel

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