My Inspiration: Coastlines | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Coastlines are a four-piece pop-punk band from up Newcastle way who have just released their debut EP, I Don’t Want To Be Nothing, on all major streaming platforms. The band, who are also due to play their biggest show to date at ThinkTank?, Newcastle on Thursday 2nd April give us a little insight into the inspiration behind their new music.

When we started Coastlines it was all about having fun and playing the music we grew up listening to. This is very much at the forefront when we write. We want to have fun playing it, because if we do, then hopefully people will have fun hearing it.

We all grew up listening to bands like blink-182, New Found Glory and A Day to Remember, so when it came to style we were heavily influenced by them. We love the way their pace is always upbeat, even the sad songs, and the songs are all made to be sang along to. 

Lyrically we wanted our songs to tell a story or have a message. The lyrics have to mean something. Whether that that be a message of hope or to tell a story about people or experiences we’ve had.

The songs on the EP were written over a series of months, starting quite early in the life of the band, and each one is different in style. At first, we were a bit concerned that we might be struggling to find a style, to find “our sound”, but we realised that we were all of it. We were a pop-punk band that were a little heavy sometimes. That liked big choruses and bouncy riffs. That had a sense of humour but could be a bit serious. It was all hitting in the same direction, just from different angles.

When it came to naming the EP, it was our drummer Anth who came up with “I Don’t Want to Be Nothing”. It’s a lyric from the last track on the record Finishing Line. In the song, the line is a fear of the main character. They’re scared that they might lose everything they have and it’s stopping them from moving forward with their life. However, we also realised it fit the other songs in different ways. The line can be a one of determination, almost defiance. That no matter what happens, I will not let it pull me down to nothing, I will keep my head high and keep going, and we just felt that tied the theme of the EP together nicely.

I Don’t Want to Be Nothing has 4 tracks plus an acoustic version. 

Track 1: We All Fall Down
We All Fall Down hits the pop-punk stereotype hard in that it’s a song about friends. The song was written after a night out and sums up how thankful we are that no matter how much older we get, when we are out together it feels like we’re teenagers again. We always try to be responsible and say things like we’ll get the last train back home, but we never do. Instead, we end up in rock clubs singing with people we’ve just met like our lives depended on it, and we love it.

Track 2: Trust Me, I’ve Been There
Trust Me, I’ve Been There is a song about trying to stay positive, even when things seem hopeless. We know how hard people can find things because we literally have all been there ourselves. We just wanted to write a song to remind people it that it can get better, and to not give up and stop trying. The song is fast with a big riff because we wanted it to reflect the determination that the lyrics were trying instil. 

Track 3: B.A.G.E.L.S
B.A.G.E.L.S is our proper pop-punk track. It’s short, sweet and a bit daft. It’s about a guy stumbling through the dating scene in the age of ‘Tinder’. When we recorded it we wanted to try and capture some of the energy we felt playing it live. To help this, the drums were pushed up to be really hard-hitting and bring Anth’s fills smack bang into the middle of the mix.

Track 4: Finishing Line
Finishing Line was one of the first songs we wrote, and it’s a bit of a long one for a pop-punk band.  The song is a story about two friends who develop feelings for each other. One wants to act on them and the other is scared to, for fear of destroying what they already have. The song was inspired by a few people we’ve known, and the way we’ve felt ourselves in the past. That sense of being scared of change. The low sense of self that stops you from letting yourself be happy, because you can’t see what someone else can see. Again though, the song has a happy ending. The end of the song starts with a repeated riff that eventually builds up until the whole band are in, with the lyrics “I’m falling. Am I falling for you?” We wanted this to be like dawning realisation. The moment the characters realise exactly what they have in front of them and let themselves grab it with both hands.

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