A singular vision from the twisted and depraved mind of Bailey Junior, “SUFFER” is a short film co-produced by Scapegoat.tv and Wall of Sound Recording Studio. The official soundtrack was written and performed by members of Tommy Concrete and The Werewolves, Of Spire and Throne, SAPIEN, Razor Sharp Death Blizzard, We Ate Them Off The Floor and Endless Swarm.
Bailey Junior makes his debut foray into narrative film-making with this unflinching, raw and dark portrait of suicide and mental health in a psychological thriller. To make sure you don’t miss it, sign up for the online premier on facebook.
You can check out the trailer after the following interview with Bailey himself.
I’m Bailey, all-round metal scene bearded bum, photographer, videographer and owner of Scapegoat.tv. A grass roots, independent and underground video production studio that’s main purpose is to promote the thriving underground alternative/extreme scene. Featuring bands, musicians, artists and all other related professions that contribute to this growing powerhouse of a scene.
Scapegoat.tv started just over 3 years ago out of several late night pub conversations which lead to me picking up my first camera and going from there. I have zero academic training in film or photography, I just went with it (DIY all the way). I started by just reaching out to friends in the music industry (home and abroad) just to see if they wanted to be involved and surprisingly most of them said yes. Originally, I was doing band interviews and the odd selection of live photos but that all changed with a conversation with Stu Gordon.
He and I mulled over the idea of doing live multi camera live sets straight from the stage and more importantly live studio sessions. In coming up with these ideas we agreed that these bands needed to be represented as close to the real thing as possible, so from the beginning there was no overdubs and definitely no cuts.
Wall of Sound Sessions was then born.
We knocked out the first session in a matter of months, compiling 9 of the most cutting edge bands to come out of the Scottish contemporary metal scene and from there it seemed to grow.
Having watched and enjoyed the Suffering for Art – The Making of SUFFER documentary did you set out originally to make a documentary or was it a by-product of making the actual film itself?
The documentary was definitely a product of making the short film. With such an abrasive look at a rather taboo subject matter in the short film, I thought I would add a layer of transparency to the whys, whos and whens behind the project. Over the last few years it has been becoming more and more prevalent the world over, but the majority of the population still ignores it like it will go away by itself. So, this was my 10 cents towards the conversation.
With both the short film and the documentary, I’m trying to show case my film making abilities while also tackling a subject matter close to my heart. Taking what I have learned in the last few years of working alongside bands (filming their live performances and taking stills) and putting it all into a larger project. It wasn’t by design but by the end it was essential.
Who came up with the poster artwork that Colin produced?
The poster design came together rather quickly once the film was complete to be honest. After brainstorming several ideas and looking at multiple examples of other film posters with a few trusted friends, I settled on the double exposure idea (having one picture overlaid on top of another). The photos themselves were taken in about 5 minutes (a series of maybe 10 shots) by my flatmate (James Macdonald) and that was that. Since there was a refined visual idea from the start the image came together very easily. Initially, I kit bashed a rough poster together then Colin offered to refine it further, with his years of graphics arts training I jumped at the chance. His expertise improved this image more than 100-fold, he took a rather simple idea and made it something special
You have some amazing local artistic contributions from the local Edinburgh scene to create a really haunting sound. Can you name names and how did you go about picking people to help?
I did indeed! I am overwhelmed at the response, all of the people I asked said “yes” straight away, 100% no if’s or but’s and I can’t thank them enough. I think this project’s success so far is mostly due to these amazing individuals that have contributed so much of their time and effort.
I Initially spoke to long time friend Stu Gordon (Wall of Sound Studios) about how I would go about recording a soundtrack for a film, how we could orchestrate getting it all recorded and if we could use his space. We discussed several different approaches to this feat but settled on recording three main sections at varying BPM (Beats Per Minute) but similar tuning so then we could “bridge” it out in post production to match the cadence of the film. Once that had been outlined I then reached out to musicians that I have worked with before through Scapegoat.tv to see if they would be interested.
I organised a group message consisting of
- Tommy Concrete (Guitar1) – Tommy Concrete and the Werewolves (ex Exploited)
- Ali Lauder (Guitar2) – Of Spire & Throne
- Ronan Wevling (Guitar3) and Fergus Thomson (Guitar4) – SAPIEN
- Cymon Aretz (Drums) – We Ate Them Off The Floor
- Alex Sharp (Bass + Vocals) – Endless Swarm
- Jamie Clark (Vocals) – Razor Sharp Death Blizzard
At the time most of these guys hadn’t seen the film and if they had it was only a few minute rough cut of the opening few minutes (so not much to go on). They all entrusted me with their talents and at the time didn’t really know what it was for. They all backed my vision from the very beginning.
Once they had all seen the film in its final form, understood my views on the subject matter and we had picked a date for recording it was “go” time. On the day itself we at first had Tommy, Alex and Cymon record a slow sludgy doomy riff section then straight after that a savage grind section (why not?). Both of these were nailed in a matter of only a couple of takes and that would set the pace for the rest of the day. Following this we asked Cymon to adlib several drum beats for post production if needed for the bridging parts, then Jamie arrived and so we got him and Alex to put down some savage vocals over the most frantic part. Shortly after finishing the vocals Fergus, Ronan and Ali arrived and hashed out this haunting soundscape (filled with all the weirdest sounds in their arsenal) solidifying all the parts we needed for the film.
Once it was all in the can it was then put in the well seasoned hands of Stu who arranged and polished this into the finished result you will see on the film. Mind boggling that these musicians had never played together and they knocked it out the park. Consummate professionals the lot of them.
I shoot a lot of the local scene for The Moshville Times in most of the Edinburgh Venues and your name comes up a fair bit in conversations about your ongoing support for the local scene, where do you see yourself going with Scapegoat.tv or are you happy with the grassroots style which seems to work very well for you?
Thanks, I’m am a well known lurker of the scene, trying to contribute where I can. There is so many amazing things happening in the live music community that I’m just happy to be apart of it. We are so lucky, I can’t help but shout about it (metaphorically).
To be totally honest I have no idea. In this short amount of time, I have achieved far more than I ever expected. If five years ago you would have told a bright-eyed younger Bailey that he would be filming and shooting bands and making a short film he would have never believed you. So, predicting where and what I’ll be doing is a mystery to me (in a good way). My main focus is still to document and represent this amazing music scene but orchestrating more of these larger projects could be on the cards. Anything to rally the troops and galvanise our community I’m all for. I feel so lucky to be in a community of my peers that helped nurture my creative path and allowed me to grow and flourish
The film is set for release on the 8th May. Will this be on your channel only and are you nervous at all about what people will think?
Indeed, it will be. The documentary (already out) and short film will be both viewable on the Scapegoat.tv Youtube channel for free come May 8th!
Honestly, I am nervous and excited in equal measure to see what the reaction to the film will be. The subject matter in the film is unquestionably real ( uncomfortable for some ) which is not the easiest to digest so giving it this unflinching portrayal could spark controversy. I personally think we should all be a bit more transparent about our emotions, talking about all facets of mental health – good and bad. The conversation needs to be broadened, not shunned which is how most modern day media represents it. With more knowledge and understanding I think we could all grow a little bit, even if that means discussing the raw reality for what it is.
I think mental health and suicide has and always will be there. Even though production started months before lockdown, coincidentally the subject matter has been brought more into focus recently with the mass amount of people in isolation at present making this topic far more relatable. Uncomfortable as it may be, something needs to be said.