LOCAL INTERVIEW: VANT | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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London by way of Sunderland’s Mattie Vant’s debut single, Parasite, is one minute and twenty-five seconds of built-up frustration, revolutionised into a burst of infectious noise that has been burrowed into the minds of many. The track may be over before it’s even started but Mattie is hoping his latest self-titled project can lead the UK out of what he considers a “horrendous time to be alive”.

Having signed to industry giants Parlophone Records, the North East-born punk now shares the same soapbox as the likes of Blur, Coldplay and Paul Weller allowing VANT, now a London-based four-piece, the chance to inspire a new generation.

With a handful of homecoming gigs, including performances at Newcastle’s Head of Steam on Friday 8th and Independent, Sunderland on Saturday 9th May, Mattie reveals how an underground tactic got the ball rolling for the band: “We spent a year and a half writing and recording whist getting a band together, and at the start of this year we slowly started filtering it out to different labels,” explains Mattie. “We were mainly looking to go ahead and do everything on our own but then Parlophone got a whiff of it. They loved our music and believed in what we were doing so they just went for it. They were shocked that no one else had picked up on us. But, that’s what we do; we kept everything secret and didn’t do many shows, and I think that secrecy made everyone go crazy for it. The whole project has been organic; we haven’t really been pushing to do anything, but it seems that everyone is gravitating towards us, which is a good sign.”

“Hopefully I can make people think and question the world we live in”

Having originally moving to Brighton to broaden his musical horizons, Mattie experimented with a range of genres but decided to stick with what he knows best. “I’ve tried a lot of different things out like electronic, acoustic and then emo stuff, but I realised I loved making punk music.”

Now he’s looking to utilise his first-hand experience of what he describes as a struggle in the North East to spark a change in the way people think towards society. “We’re living in a crucial time at the moment and no one is soundtracking that, so that’s what I’m trying to do,” asserts Mattie who lists “the gap between the poor and rich, recession and unemployment” as just a few problems that concern him. “I just want to write stuff that’s important to me and about issues that I’ve found are important and current. Not that I’m saying I’m going to run for fucking Prime Minister, I just think we need to be much more concerned. I’ve always wanted to do music and now I’ve found a voice and a reason. Hopefully I can make people think and question the world we live in.”

Mattie describes his live set as “loud, energetic and in your face”, clocking in at around half an hour, packing 11 tracks into a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it show that will leave you speculating about the bigger picture.

VANT play Head of Steam, Newcastle on Friday 8th and Independent, Sunderland on Saturday 9th May.

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