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

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Image by Johnny Haynes

Although they’re still a relatively young band having formed in 2016, the work of Newcastle-based three-piece ThreadBear has been progressing so well that they’ve already recorded, and road-tested, their debut album. Emotional rock, with an undercurrent of loud/quiet Pixies-style constructions, Fine By Me is an album to watch out for; particularly given the attention placed on first single Yupppp and its mind-warping promotional video.

“It’s certainly been getting an interesting reaction,” laughs ThreadBear guitarist Jonathan Teggert, “what we wanted was to create was a video where we demonstrated both our sense of humour and also the seriousness with which we take our music.  We’re quite an interesting band in that we try not to take things too seriously, apart from our music, which we take incredibly seriously.”

An interesting concept, the Yupppp story highlights not just the band’s humour but also their desire to make serious songs about serious issues; something they’re keen to take further on their debut record. “What we were trying to capture was how we feel about the world and how the world affects us,” agrees vocalist Sam Riseborough. “Whereas our past EPs were recorded when we were quite young and we jammed out the songs, with Fine By Me we sat down as a band and consciously thought about what sound we wanted to create before we picked up our instruments. We wanted to make quite a serious record and in order to do this we felt we needed to change our creative process.”

We wanted to make quite a serious record and in order to do this we felt we needed to change our creative process 

ThreadBear’s new methods initially stifled the writing process. “Our drummer Shane also plays guitar so we tend to structure our music to the sound of a guitar rather than a drum beat when we create music, and then we work backwards until we hear the sound that we want to make,” continues Jonathan.  “With our EP, once we had recorded our parts that was the process finished, whereas with the album we kept re-evaluating the sound and asking ourselves how can we make the sound even better.”

Played out across the album, such perfectionism is heavily prominent on tracks such as I’m A Bad Friend And I’m Sorry and What Am I Supposed To Do, songs which are thought-provoking not just for their heavy pop/rock sound, but also for their honesty. “There’s ten songs in total on the album,” says Sam, “and mostly they’re about me kicking at myself and my flaws and looking back at things and how I could have been better. I think what’s been interesting about the recording process is that the album was recorded last August and I don’t feel the same way today as I did then. I genuinely believe that the creative process has helped me to get through some of the challenges I had, and that writing songs has been as therapeutic to me as sitting talking to friends about my challenges. I think songwriting can be a really interesting therapy.”

Sculpted from those challenges, Fine By Me is an album bursting with heavy songs and heavy ideas, and one that takes the band onto the next phase of their journey. An album to certainly watch out for, and one to most definitely learn from.

ThreadBear launch Fine By Me at Head of Steam, Newcastle on Friday 5th April.


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