DOORSTEP INTERVIEW: The Welcome Party | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Welcome to Doorstep Interview, where we find out more about the amazing bands and artists that we have right here in the north east. This time, The Welcome Party tell us about their new song Dead Love, and what it means to be part of a “scene.”

Tell us a bit about yourself. Who are you, where are you from?

We are The Welcome Party: Jamie Thomas (vocals, guitar), Cole Gilroy (guitar), Scott Bowman (bass) and Lee Clifford (drums). We’re all based in and around Newcastle, and have been playing together since late last year.

What inspired you to first start making music together? 

We had all been involved in a variety of bands in the past, but The Welcome Party was the result of a few months demoing songs for a band that didn’t exist at the time. Cole and I had been friends for years, Scott was the bassist in my very first high school band (many moons ago) and Lee was introduced to us through Scott. The songs progressed a lot quicker than expected, and it was clear we had an actual band within a few weeks of playing together. It fell together quite naturally, so we are very lucky in that respect.

Who would you say are your biggest influences?

We’re into a fair range of music between us, but I doubt the band would be doing what we do without the likes of The National, Modest Mouse, Interpol, The Walkmen… they’re probably the most obvious influences.

How would you describe your sound?

I try not to! Nobody likes that question. I guess we write in a way that covers that darker indie rock influence, but we also have an obsession with simple, well presented pop music. I think both are equally important to us. There’s a lot of big guitars and drums, but also a more delicate side to it too.

Where do you see yourselves fitting into the local music scene?

It’s pretty strong in Newcastle at the minute. We’ve so many varied and talented bands, so fitting in at all is a privilege. We’ve been playing shows with bands like High Tide 15:47, Shades and Canyons, and I think everyone is just embracing how good the “scene” is these days. Although I imagine most deny being part of a “scene” as such, there is definitely a crowd of like-minded bands in the city, and we’re avid fans of a lot of them.

“We’ve so many varied and talented bands, so fitting in at all is a privilege”

Tell us a bit about your live performances. What can we expect from a gig by The Welcome Party?

The shows allow us to present the songs differently than on record, so we try to take advantage of that. We can get very loud, and very sweaty.

Can you tell us what gigs you have planned in the region in the near future?

We’re just about to put out a download-only release, literally within the next week, so will be doing a small run of shows over the summer, starting with a release party at Little Buildings on Saturday 18th July. September onwards should be pretty busy.

What do you think has been your biggest achievement so far as a band?

We still consider ourselves to be very much in our infancy, so to have been playing shows at The Cluny or for Evolution Emerging is a huge honour for us. Our biggest achievement has been finishing the first release, but we’re now very much focused on the next.

Have there been any major challenges so far in your musical career?

Hardly. We’ve been extremely lucky to have had so much support and backing in such a short period of time, so we certainly can’t complain in that regard. I do find this summer heat a challenge though, so it’s not all plain sailing.

What else have you got planned for the future?

We’re currently writing our EP, with the single due out later in the year, so that’s the main focus right now. In the meantime a song called Dead Love will be released on Saturday 18th July, which will mark the start of what should be a very busy twelve months for us.

The Welcome Party release Dead Love on Saturday 18th July but is available to listen to on their Soundcloud page now.


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