Interview: Waves Of Dread | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Newcastle’s, dreamy, indie rockers, Waves of Dread release their EP II. It’s a room filling, six track offering incorporating elements of shoegaze, psych and stoner rock, as well as lo-fi bedroom pop, with an eighties-feel production that simultaneously adds a nostalgic warmth and a haunting softness that ties the tracks together. The dynamic of the EP flows smoothly from ethereal opening of Foregone, to the soaring vibrancy of Motion, to the grinding chug of final track Born and offers the listener a gentle and enjoyable voyage to oblivion. 

We chat with Waves Of Dread’s very own Nick JH to find out more about the band and their latest release.

Describe your sound?
We’re quite raw sounding, I’d say, but maybe not in the most stereotypical sense. We’re often compared to bands like My Bloody Valentine, Ride, and Brian Jonestown Massacre, who we love, but I wouldn’t say we sound specifically like any of those groups either. We’re certainly noisy, though!

How did the band get together? Where did the name come from?
It started with just myself, when I put some demos out about two years ago. They got a good reception at the time and from there I started to put a band together. I’ve had a few members come and go since then, but Bob (guitar) and Jakko (bass) remain from the original line up. We’ve currently got my dear old friend Steven Gordon, of Headclouds and High Tide 15:47 fame, playing the drums. The name came from one of our former members, Dominique, who had joked about starting a band called Waves of Dread for a little while. It only seemed fair that I asked her to join the band, after I stole her name…

Briefly describe the songwriting process.
The majority of the songs will start from demos we’ve recorded at home. We’ve had a pretty solid process when it comes to that, everything we’ve released so far has been recorded by ourselves. This new EP was recorded, mixed and mastered entirely by myself, with help from Bob and Jakko. It’s become a pretty common thing for bands to do in the past decade or so, record everything themselves. Then when we take them to rehearsals, we’ll sometimes arrange them differently, to suit the live setting. We’ve always been big fans of James Murphy from LCD Soundsystem’s approach – he calls the live band ‘the greatest LCD cover band in the world’, or something along those lines. So that’s been our approach too. We’re the greatest Waves of Dread cover band in the world!

Tell us about the themes within the EP? What inspired it?
The majority of this record was written after the release of the first EP, so a lot of the same themes remain. Waves of Dread was, for want of a better description, a bit of a heartbreak record, so there’s the aftermath of that in there still. Most of the lyrics were mainly written around 18 months ago and admittedly a lot of those feelings are pretty irrelevant to me now, but we really like the songs and we wanted them to see the light of day. This record also acts as a bridge between EPs, the third one’s been written for a little while too. That’s likely to be released either later this year or early 2021.

Are you hopeful for the future? Have you got any plans in these uncertain times?
In terms of actual recordings, we’re pretty positive! On top of the two forthcoming EPs, we’ve got a couple of singles almost ready and a bunch of demos still to look at, plus new stuff is being written all the time. The lockdown period gave us plenty of time to work on music – we made the best of a bad situation. It’s just a shame we probably won’t get to play these songs live for quite some time.

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