Hey Bulldog – Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
HB: We are a three piece Garage Rock band from Manchester.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
HB: Rob and I (Matt) met almost through an ad some years ago, based on a mutual love of the same music and an E.P. that Rob had created.
A fair few drummers later ( 6 years ago) we found Ben and we have been together ever since. Some highlights have been playing Sicily, Kendal Calling twice, The Garage in London, as well as fifteen of our songs getting national radio play. Most recently though, selling out Jimmy’s in Manchester was pretty special.
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
HB: Musically we all have our own influences to bring to the table. I’d say Rob is the oracle on all things classic and modern, Ben is your typical punk and rock scholar, and I am all about anything Pete Doherty. As a band though we are very much into the Kills, Idles, Jimi Hendrix Experience and Led Zeppelin.
Non-musically, I would have to say David Attenborough, James Acaster, Wes Anderson and Pete Doherty. He influences me in all aspects of life.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
HB: Isn’t it that if you are in a band the dream is to play sell out stadium gigs, record platinum selling albums, and have thousands of adoring fans? Well, to be honest, as good as that sounds, my dream would just be to create and release the music we love and earn enough to live on. That being said I would love to record an album then tour it round Europe and America.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
HB: We all write our music in various ways, however I think my favourite way, and where I feel we make our best music, is when we jam as a band. We always start each practice with a jam to warm up and if it sounds good we’ll record it, pick our favourite bits and then create a structure. It always feels like a very organic way to write, collectively inspired with each member adding their own take on the idea.
Our songs are about many things, politics, love, life or just a phrase we heard when we were abroad. That’s the beauty of music; you can turn anything into a song
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
HB: Promotion wise we use the usual social media platforms, etc. However, what I love in Manchester is there is a real community feel in the music scene. Bands help other bands out by putting them on the same bill, sharing their music and attending each other’s gigs. This helps the fans then discover new music and get into new bands, something that is a real change from ten years ago, when you didn’t really even talk to the other bands you were playing with.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
HB: Well… as someone who has been made redundant twice from working in music shops I am completely against illegal downloading, and to be honest I don’t think there is an excuse for it anymore with the numerous ways you can listen to music, like Sound Cloud, Band Camp, YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, etc. I do however think that the introduction of these platforms are brilliant for the music industry as they make music so much more accessible, and it means that anyone can create music now and get it out there to the masses. I just think that they need to get a little tighter on the regulations and legislation on ownership, plays and royalties.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
HB: Happy Birthday… Everyone knows it, it gets sung every day, it’s catchy as hell! and the royalties!
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
HB: Littering, cruelty to animals
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
HB: That’s a difficult question… historically it would be playing in Sicily, supporting Joel Gion (from the Brian Jonestown Massacre), getting played on Radio X and BBC Radio 6 Music, but most recently, seeing our names in lights outside of a sold out Jimmy’s… that was amazing!
PD: So what are you working on at the moment?
HB: We are just about to release our new single, Death & Greed, on October 4th, which is our first single to be released on vinyl. We are also currently working on our first album, something we have been dreaming of for years now. Really looking forward to it as I love the creative process, not as much as playing live, but it really is interesting and exciting to see what comes out of it. That should be released early next year.
PD: Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there.
HB: On the 5th October we will be playing the Psych Rising all-day event at Night People for the wonderful Asteral Elevator. After that it’s off to Chester to support a double headliner, Gravves and Dey-Yey for their E.P. launches at St. Mary’s Creative Space on the 19th October, and then it’s down to the big smoke at the back end of November.
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