Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: How would you describe yourself or your band as an artist?
Connor: We have multiple elements and influences to our sound and the way we play, from Fusion to Classic rock to Thrash and Extreme Metal and beyond.
We don’t put ourselves in any specific subgenre; we just refer to ourselves as a metal band metal band
Aiden: We’d describe ourselves as straight up metal. I’m not into all this sub genre rubbish and elitism towards certain kinds of music. If you enjoy the music then what’s wrong with that?
Tom: We’re just three lads who love playing metal music really! We’ve all got different inspirations so it’s quite an interesting mix when we all come together creating the “Vice” sound I guess.
PD: Can you tell us briefly about your background – i.e. where you’re from, how you came to make music, etc.?
Connor: The band is based in Manchester UK and, I’m from a small town in Lancashire called Accrington! My Dad is a drummer, and there was always music in the house growing up, so I guess I inherited the genes.
Aiden: So, I’m from the land of Bury (north Manchester), and me and Tom have known each other for about 11-12 years now through the local music scene.
When Vice was looking for a bass player in 2017, I reached out and we just jammed it out. I’ve been here ever since.
Tom: We’re all from the Manchester area. I met Connor at a local venue one night in Bury and asked him straight away if he wanted to join up and play drums. Aiden, I’ve known for over ten years. So when we needed a bass player he stepped up to help out and hasn’t left since!
PD: Who and what inspires you to make music, both in terms of musical and other influences? What do you like to write about in your songs?
Connor: Our first album was a concept based on the seven deadly sins! Our new album ‘For the Fallen’ touches on the Human condition with songs based around emotion, aspiration, conflict, aspiration, chronic illness and mortality.
Aiden: I’m generally inspired by all kinds of music and whatever is going on in my life. I try to take the personal side of things out of the songs I write but it’s always inspired by real world stuff. I’ve got a rubbish imagination for seeing myself in other people’s shoes. people’s shoes.
Tom: My main influences for song writing are taking a look at what’s happening to the world around us. Current events and how they affect everyone. Recently we’ve been writing a lot about how certain illnesses can take over someone’s life and how quit over someone’s life and how quite often they’re just forgotten about by governments.
PD: What are your aspirations as an artist?
Connor: To carry on learning and improving my playing and, to be the best I can be
Aiden: I only have one aspiration for my music and that’s to keep making it. Whatever happens after that is up to the fans of said music.
Tom: Just to keep playing music, and to enjoy ourselves whilst we’re doing it. We obviously have the dream of getting bigger and better as musicians and playing bigger venues. But our main thing is to have fun whilst we’re doing it.
PD: What is the proudest moment in your music career so far?
Connor: Playing Bloodstock in 2016 and touring with Metal legend Blaze Bayley in 2019 and releasing our second album ‘For the Fallen’
Aiden: Proudest moment of my musical career so far would be releasing our latest album For the Fallen. It’s the first time my name has appeared on a piece of music and I couldn’t be happier with it.
Tom: We’ve just released album two. And I think that’s a pretty good start so far.
We’ve also opened the main stage at the O2 in Birmingham and played festivals such as Bloodstock and Hammerfest.
PD: Promoting one’s music is such a challenge these days, especially with so many new artists emerging from bedrooms in the day of the home studio. How is that going?
Connor: With ‘Vice’ everything we earn is re-invested in the band, to pay recording and touring costs, PR and Merchandise. Everyone tries to cut costs recording more at home but we always record the drums and Vocals in the studio
Aiden: Promoting music is a challenge as people’s attention spans have shortened due to the rise of social media. It still boils down to the right place at the right time but I think now instead of in the real world, it’s all done virtually through YouTube or Facebook etc.
Tom: We like all artists have had to adapt. We’re still quite fond of recording in an actual studio to really get the feel of how the record is sounding. We do demos at home, but you can’t beat real drums and amps in a studio! But on the other hand we do our best to keep up with the digital social media side of it all now. It’s an incredible tool and we just have to do what we can!
PD: And how do you book and promote your live shows and tours? Any performances coming up?
Connor: Bookings can be made through our management at firstname.lastname@example.org we promote our shows and merchandise through www.vicemetaluk.bandcamp.com www.facebook.com/vicemetaluk and www.instagram.com/vicemetaluk
Aiden:We’ve not got any shows booked just yet due to some imminent personal commitments but we are currently booking shows for 2023 and beyond
PD: What do you think about downloading music online? What about streaming sites like Spotify?
Connor: I think it’s always going to be with us like it or not. More important is that digital distributors and streaming platforms should seriously look at paying artists higher percentages
Aiden: Streaming services are a double-edged sword. For exposure they are great but for making a living from music it’s about as good as working for free. It’s all down to balance and how you weigh the pros and cons to use streaming to your advantage.
Tom: Everyone has their own ways of listening to music. I still enjoy having a physical copy of an album to have a look at and have a read, and also check out the album artwork. Just as much work goes into that as the music itself in most cases! Spotify is a great way to discover new music but, if you really like an artist go check out their website. Buy a CD or some kind of merchandise to keep the band going!
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
Connor: Driving home for Christmas by Chris Rea It’s the best Christmas song ever, sums it up perfectly, and would make me some money every year in royalties!
Aiden: Hard one to pin down with so much good music being put out at the moment, but I’d probably say something from Electric Callboys recent releases
Tom: Probably “A Farewell to Arms” by Machine Head. It’s just a perfect metal song. It’s got everything, the build up, the riff, the vocal harmonies the vocal harmonies the vocal harmonies, and guitar solos. It’s just an incredible song.
PD: Is there anything you don’t like about the music industry, which you would change if you could?
Connor: The meagre percentages paid to artists by record companies and digital streaming companies. The wealth in the music industry should be filtered down to the grass roots more
Aiden: The music industry is its own beast with ins and outs all over the place. For me, there’s no like or dislike, it’s just something you’ve got to know how to manipulate to your own advantages manipulate to your own advantages
Tom: I guess it’s just any toxicity that can lurk underneath. Just be genuine with one another. If you don’t like/like something be honest about it. Not everything will suit your taste. There’s nothing wrong with saying it’s not quite your thing. Just be yourself.
PD: So, what are you working on at the moment?
Connor: We are currently promoting our new release ‘For the Fallen and rehearsing for our album launch on 2nd July and writing new songs for album 3
Aiden: So no work is happening at the moment as we are currently preparing to release our 2nd album For the Fallen. However, after the launch, we may do a bit on Album 3
Tom: Album three! Whilst we welcome Aiden’s child into the world we want to sure we’ve got plenty of material and shows so he can be straight back into it!
PD: Where can we learn more about you and buy your music/merch online?
Contact the band at Contact the band at email@example.com