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

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Image by Mark Buchanan

New Horror burst onto the scene in late 2015 with a swaggering, elliptical take on post-punk. Having already built a stellar reputation on the live circuit and with a second album currently in the works, it seemed high time to catch up with New Horror to find out more about this enigmatic band.

Asked about how New Horror came together, frontman Lewis Thompson explains, “At the start of 2015, Mark [McGarry, guitars] and myself began writing what would eventually become New Horror material. We were dissatisfied with playing in punk bands, so as a response the music we were writing seemed a lot more accessible from our perspective.”

From the off, New Horror have boasted an ambition rarely found amongst their peers, having gone almost directly into recording last year’s debut album Fruitless Search after formation. “I found the ‘next most hyped demo’ rotation culture in punk and DIY music to be totally stale, bands will just release a four track demo because it’s commonplace and seems like the safest option. Releasing a full-length was just our comment on that manner of releasing music; we didn’t want to limit ourselves to a disposable twenty minutes.”

Unusually for a band with north-east roots, New Horror are split up geographically, but as Thompson explains, this keeps things fresh for the band. “We’ve never really known it any other way: I moved to Leeds soon after we started this band, so we’re used to sending each other demos over Facebook messenger and writing like that.” Mark McGarry adds to this, noting that, “having very little time to rehearse has been better for us in the long run, as we can use live performances to determine how we think a song is working out in a live setting. It also keeps the material fresh in our own ears so we don’t have time to get bored of it.”

We all know that what we are all doing is something that we shouldn’t let slip away

New Horror so far have released all their material through their own label Soft Verse, which has also released music and hosted performances by like-minded artists including Luxury, Transfigure and Suda. “Soft Verse is myself and Mark’s label, we have done a few small scale cassette and digital releases of our own and our friend’s music. The whole point of this is to put our friends’ music on some kind of platform. We all know that what we are all doing is something that we shouldn’t let slip away, it’s a good feeling knowing your friends are making music that excites you.” Recently recruited new member Adam Benson also notes, “I’ve come to realise the importance of collaboration. Not just on record but as a collective, it’s strong and people listen up to that. Having this group of ‘like minded artists’ gives us the basis to throw nights, gigs and put out cassettes where we can present ourselves as a collective.”

Right now however, the band’s attention is turned towards their next album. Preview track Nightclub Musik I arrived in May, marking their first release with Adam Benson in the band. As Thompson puts it, “we recorded Nightclub Musik I a few weeks ago and released it very soon after finishing it, it was completely spontaneous but I prefer it that way. It was also the first track that Adam wrote towards, so I felt that it was important that we made the line-up change more obvious. We have a habit of being really inactive or vague when it comes to social media announcements, but I hate it when bands blab on.”

New Horror play Endless Window at The Cumberland Arms with Human Tooth, Mayshe Mayshe and Massa Confusa on Friday 21st July. Fruitless Search is out now on Soft Verse.

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