Toronto Blessings – Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
TB: We are a thee piece Noise Rock band from Barnsley. Yep. We use guitars, drums and a synth to beat you into submission.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
TB: We formed Toronto Blessings when our old band Cavorts went on hiatus. We had two singers leave and the three of us who remained became Toronto Blessings. We wrote an albums worth of songs we scrapped as we wanted to get away from the metal sound of our past. We wanted to create something new, something a bit out of our comfort zone. Dale then bought a dirty analogue synth and we started to write around it too.
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
TB: Our musical influences vary from bands like Metz, The Jesus Lizard, The Cure, Daughters to depeche mode and synth wave. Anything that’s good and has that rhythm that makes you want to dance.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
TB: We just want to play live as much as possible really. We do this all for fun these days, so writing and creating good music is our main aim. Obviously we want as many people to hear us as possible and to play larger gigs. We’ve all been around the block and want to just live in the moment. What happens, happens. Aye.
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
TB: We all pretty much write the songs together. One of us will normally bring a few ideas in and we’ll just flesh it out. If it’s not working we’ll scrap it and move on. I’ll (Rik) then write the lyrics which can be personal or social awareness. Our latest single UvU is about depression and anxiety taking control of your life. It’s written to help people to speak out if they too are suffering.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
TB: Its all DIY for us at the moment. 100 percent. We’ve been on labels in the past for precious bands, but for this one we wanted to build it from the ground up. To be honest it’s been alot harder but way more satisfying. We do everything ourselves. Dale (guitar) does all our artwork design and has even done a couple of videos for us.
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
TB: It’s great for exposure. Sometimes you get chatting to someone about the band and they’ll just get out their phone and follow you on Spotify or Apple music or whatever. Only problem is no one now wants to pay for music anymore.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
TB: I wish I had written ‘It’s So Easy’ by Guns n Roses. It’s pure sleaze isn’t it? You all agree so that’s fine.
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
TB: I hate it when it’s raining and the dog won’t go outside for a piss, so he just does it in the house. Bastard. But loveable.
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
TB: I’ve been lucky to have been on some great labels in the past and had music released to the masses. We’ve all been in bands that have had national radio play and luckily that still has continued with this band. We’ve played amazing venues like Shepherds Bush Empire, but that’s the past. The most recent proudest moment has been when we released our single UvU and people have related to to lyrics and have got in touch. They have told me how well I captured how they feel about depression and anxiety with the lyrics. It’s blown me away.
PD: So what are you working on at the moment?
TB: We’ve just released our latest single UvU, so we’re trying to get more people to hear it as possible. We put out a single earlier this year too called Hopes//Dreams which got alot of air time on BBC Sheffield introducing. They included it on there best songs of the year so far. We hope to have our EP out in the next few months. It’s called Asleep so keep your eyes out for that.
PD: Tell us about your next shows and why we should be there.
TB: Our next shows are 19/07/19 Barnsley old school house with Barnsley dark punk legends System of Hate. Then the day after we are playing at the black heart Camden with our good friends Servers.
You should goes because you’ll go deaf but thoroughly enjoy doing so. It’ll be the greatest noise you’ve ever heard.
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