If you’re going to release a new single / video, then what better way to do it than with a forensic Q&A for the best music website going? Or failing that, chat to us muppets and let us tell you more about Wounded Cross…
Tom: I’m from Rugby.
Graham: Same, born and raised.
How did you meet?
Tom: Me and Graham met at a house party when I was about 19 or maybe 20. I met Stubn through Graham, I don’t know how much more I can say about that though without breaking an NDA.
Graham: we don’t talk about Stubn. Like Bruno. But yeah we met at a house party many many moons ago, bonded over gaming, stuck around for the music.
How long have you been playing as a band?
Tom: Well, me and Graham have been playing together for a really long time. I don’t even know how long at this point. This incarnation of the band have been together for about a year.
Graham: we started Wounded Cross in 2014 and Tom joined around 2015. Then we broke up with that version of the band in 2017 and we sort of reformed it as Mark 2 in 2021 and started writing the new material.
Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from?
Tom: Graham came up with it, I pretty much just liked the name so went along with it. Naming things isn’t my strong point.
Graham: bit of a cop out but it was actually a band generator website 🤣 but it does have a meaning, it’s meant to symbolise the fall of the most dominant power (religion)
What are your influences?
Tom: I have quite a few influences, the main ones are Ritchie Blackmore, Yngwie Malmsteen, Prince and Uli Jon Roth. I also really like NWOBHM like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, Metalcore bands like ERRA, Novelists FR and Killswitch Engage. Funky stuff like Rick James and Princes early work. Pretty much anything with good melodies makes me happy.
Graham: absolutely a music nerd, I go to gigs constantly and I’m almost encyclopedic about it. But if I had a top 20 favourite artists it would change fairly often but a few would always be there. Black Sabbath, Rush, Killing Joke, Anathema, Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones, Free, Faith No More etc. But I’m also hugely into the darker side of things, Godflesh, Swans, YOB, Neurosis, and more recently Birds in Row, Employed to Serve & The Ocean and I dabble into death metal, black metal and grind occasionally.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
Tom: This is a tough one, when I write riffs etc I kind of just get into a zone where I’m jamming, will stumble across something that’s kinda meh and then polish it until I like it. I don’t really write music with the intention of copying anybody else or replicating a specific genre. Self reflectively I think this is a good thing and bad thing, it means sometimes I’ll come up with things that are quite interesting but it also means that other times I’ll come up with things that go nowhere and end up being scrapped. I think that’s the best answer I can give here, because it’s really difficult for me to objectively listen to the music we have made and say what makes it unique. What I’m saying is when I over think things I get nowhere, so I go with the flow more and let things naturally happen. It’s why stylistically the last album was all over the place. It was a bit of a mess honestly, I’ve corrected that this time. Hopefully people will like that the new material is more focused.
Graham: We once called the old band “Groovy stoner thrash doom metal” but the new iteration of Wounded Cross is far more prog, it comes out as it comes out as Tom says, but it’s a huge melding of influences and genres and hard to pin down. That’s probably a constant for us.
Do you have any particular lyrical themes?
Tom: Yeah, definitely political, but I don’t write any of the lyrics so Graham can elaborate here.
Graham: lyrical themes range from the modern world, politics, climate change, and some are autobiographical. I tend to rhyme with it, and I try to mask and use metaphors as most lyricists do. There’s two songs about me losing a job actually but you’d never know it unless I explained it haha
What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?
Tom: I’m not sure how many we played with the old version of the band, but I always had a lot of fun playing live and enjoyed meeting new people and listening to new bands just as much as playing. We were fortunate enough to share the stage with some incredibly talented musicians and met some brilliant people.
Graham: the original band played 24 shows over a two year period or so. This band has not played any yet, but likely will do nearer album release or after.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
Tom: I don’t want to mention the band by name but the drummer from another band threw up all over Paul’s (ex drummer’s) drum kit. He’d had a bit too much to drink, and to be fair to the other band from what little I remember we had a bit too much to drink too. Our drummer wasn’t very happy.
Graham: Ha, I remember that. Some semi well known doom band I believe. The old days we definitely had a few beers after shows, I distinctly remember when we played Birmingham academy Massive attack was playing next door and I got in trouble for trying to sneak in. Our shows themselves weren’t too wild though, just fun!
What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.?
Tom: I’ve used a lot of guitars over the years. Jackson, Ibanez, Charvel etc… but I always come back to Fender. I previously used a white Fender Stratocaster and that thing was my baby. I now play a Fender Telecaster exclusively I love how delicate the tone is but it also really cuts through on leads. I pretty much just use Fender now, I also don’t don’t humbuckers which is probably a bit weird considering we are a metal band.
What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?
Tom: Our first single in 3 years is coming out very soon, it’s not just the first single in a while but is an introduction to our upcoming album. I think we also have some T-shirts left to sell and boxes of the first ep to give away at shows.
Graham: the first new single, leading into maybe another two singles then the full album!
What are your plans for the next 6 months or so?
Tom: Writing and getting this album done really. After that I suspect we will be polishing our performance for gigging!
Graham: see how the singles do and then the album should be out, followed by shows!
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!
Tom: I’d love to support Deep Purple, it’s probably not going to happen but you know. In terms of local bands we did a few gigs with a brilliant Coventry band called Scattering Ashes and I would love to play with those guys again. Brilliant musicians and lovely people.
Graham: I would love to support or open for something like Mastodon. Probably never happen but who knows. Smaller scale, I’d like to play with our friends in Grunk (also from Rugby), Alunah, and potentially some other DC Sound Attack bands like Netherhall, and if I went further afield I’d love to play with Katatonia, The Ocean, Plaides, or my biggest influence, Killing Joke!
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