It’s that time of year again, when in the run-up to Bloodstock we endeavour to interview every band gracing the Sophie Lancaster, New Blood and Jägermeister stages from 8th – 11th August 2019. This means you’ve got a chance to read up on all your favourite bands set to play over the weekend and decide which new ones you’ll want to check out.
As ever, we’re predicting some horrible clashes because, true to form, there are some great bands across all three stages so you should start planning who you want to see.
Our thanks to all the bands for taking the time out to answer our questions!
Solitary – SOPHIE stage, Sunday
Simple things first – where are you guys from?
We are based in Preston but Gaz (Bassist) lives in Leeds and Andy (Lead Guitar) lives in Oldham. Both myself (Rich Vocals/Guitar) and Roy (Drums) live in Preston. Roy moved from Essex to join the band back in 1999.
How long have you been playing together as a band?
This year is our 25th anniversary. I formed the band in 1994, Gaz joined in 1998 when we were recording our first album, Roy moved from Essex a year later and Andy is the newest member – he’s only been with us 16 years. That said, Gaz has had a few years off – he rejoined just before Christmas last year.
Where does the name of the band come from?
I originally wanted us to be called Solitude but not everyone was keen so someone suggested Solitary and as there wasn’t any other band called that we went with that instead.
Describe your music. What makes you unique?
I don’t really think anything is unique nowadays in a musical sense. We’re a thrash band and I’d like to think we blend our influences from the 80’s (Slayer, Testament, etc) with our own style of song writing. It’s definitely heavy and fast and I always strive to make sure I get some vocal hooks in there.
What’s your live show like? Why are people going to watch you instead of another band?
It’s fairly intense and we like to keep the momentum going so we play one or two of the tracks back to back. We’ve a few fist-pumping moments and if head banging and moshing is your thing we’re the perfect soundtrack.
Have you played Bloodstock before? If so, when?
No it’s our first time, so really pleased to have a slot, especially for our 25th anniversary
How/when did you find out that you’d be playing the SOPHIE stage?
It was earlier on this year, February I think. Our agent Dan Carter of Fat Angel bookings spoke to Simon and he offered us a slot. We’d been the guest headliner at last year’s Wrexham Metal to the Masses final and Rob Bannister had said we should apply for a slot on the Sophie stage.
What sort of setlist can we expect?
It’s going to be fast. Most of the songs will be from our last album, The Diseased Heart of Society, and we’ll be playing a couple of tracks off our earlier albums.
Which other band do you most hope you’re not clashing with so you can see them play?
Well we’ve got a pretty good idea of who we are clashing with; it’s either Ross the Boss with KK Downing or Soilwork. As both are big draws we’ll be doing our best to keep everyone at the Sophie Stage until we’ve finished our set.
What are you working on at the moment?
We’ve a new EP coming out on 9th August called XXV, where we’ve re-recorded three tracks “Requiem”, “Within Temptation” and “Keep Your Enemies Closer” and there’s a couple of live tracks recorded from our show with Darkane at The Underworld in London in March. We’re also going to put out a DVD towards the end of the year which will contain loads of live clips and interviews all part of the 25th anniversary celebrations. More importantly we are back in the studio in December to record a new album with Simon Efemey, so we are in the middle of honing the new material.
What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?
I would say the most mental thing I’ve seen was at Dark Angel show where a roadie jumped of the stage at the end of their set and over shot the first couple of rows, meaning there wasn’t anyone to catch him. As a result he landed on his face and knocked himself unconscious – there was blood everywhere.
What drink do you throw back to get yourself fired up before going on stage?
To be honest I make sure I drink plenty of water before we go on; it helps with the voice, whereas booze trends to dry things up. Years ago I’d be knocking back lagers but the songs were easier to play and sing back then. The intro tape (showing my age now) tends to get the blood pumping just fine.