FROM: MANCHESTER | FOR FANS OF: CITIZEN, TURNOVER
Dreamo is a genre that has been developing and bubbling over into reality for the last few years. Whilst the likes of TURNOVER, and one of Epitaph’s latest signings, TEENAGE WRIST have been making some noise, it’s rare to find a band that seem to be holding up the dream woven flag here in the UK, well that was until Manchester’s MEDLOCK came onto the scene. With their debut EP, Medlock being released last month, as well as the premiere of their latest single, Alone coming directly from Discovered (you can check out the premiere here!) we sat down with vocalist Matt Cummings and guitarist Luke Wilson to find out just what makes England’s new emo dream tick…
“WE WERE UNSURE ABOUT WHAT OUR SOUND WAS…”
FIRST YOU GUYS ALL MET AT UNIVERSITY AND DECIDED TO FORM THE BAND THEN. MATT YOU ACTUALLY HAVE MENTIONED PREVIOUSLY THAT IT WASN’T UNTIL UNI YOU STARTED TO DISCOVER ANY SORT OF ALTERNATIVE MUSIC. DO YOU FEEL THIS IS WHAT HAS KEPT YOUR SOUND SO FRESH AND EXCITING?
Matt (vocals) – Yes I think so, I was raised as a mod and more of an ‘indie kid’ for most of my teenage years, the alternative scene I’m into now wasn’t really around at all in my hometown of Oldham. Listening to all this new music for the first time I think gives me a fresh perspective on how to write songs for the style we’re in.
Luke (guitar) – I think we’ve all had fun showing matt all the stuff we listened to at the time such as Bring Me The Horizon, Taking Back Sunday, A Day To Remember, etc! I remember when me and bryan showed him Attack Attack’s!’s video for ‘stick stickly’ and all he could say was something along the lines of ‘what the bloody f**k is this’.
MATT, PREVIOUS TO THIS BAND YOU ACTUALLY PERFORMED SOLO IN MORE OF AN INDIE CIRCUIT. DO YOU FEEL THIS INFLUENCE CAN STILL BE HEARD IN MEDLOCK’S MUSIC?
Matt (vocals) – I think it can in certain tracks, like ‘Mould’ and ‘True Mate Room Mate’. We try not to think too hard about genre when we’re writing, but naturally my indie roots power through a little bit without me even realising it.
WHEN YOU WENT INTO THE STUDIO YOU MENTIONED YOU WERE LISTENING TO BANDS LIKE ENDLESS HEIGHTS A LOT, AS WELL AS WORKING ERIK BICKERSTAFF (LOATH). DO YOU FEEL LISTENING TO GENRES OTHER THAN YOUR OWN HELPED TO KEEP YOUR MATERIAL ORIGINAL?
Matt (vocals) – Yeah we all listen to a wide variety of music from metal all the way to mumble rap, there are elements from every genre that we could potentially take away and utilise. Working with Erik was really fun because going into the studio we were still a bit unsure about exactly what our sound was, he was also listening to Endless Heights at the time we recorded and helped to craft our sound based on that style we were all vibing at the time.
Luke (guitar) – I would agree that listening to different styles has helped us out a lot and when it came to taking the EP to Erik we definitely had faith in it, but I think there was always a slight issue with the flow which Erik helped us to figure out and make it all sound how we envisioned it.
WHETHER IT’S TRACKS SUCH AS ‘MOULD’, OR EVEN THE TITLE OF YOUR TRACK, ‘TRUE MATE, ROOM MATE’, IT SEEMS THAT LYRICALLY MEDLOCK IS A REFLECTION OF YOUR YOUTH. DO YOU AGREE WITH THIS?
Matt (vocals) – These tracks represent a very specific point in our life, mostly based on our experiences throughout university. Most of us have finished uni now and listening to these tracks do bring back an element of nostalgia of great times when we all used to live together in a house that was falling apart. We’re not that much older now but they will always represent that time in our youth.
Luke: “I think the story of where ‘true mateRoommatee’ came from as a title is one I always enjoy telling our friends when they asked about it, basically me and Matt were walking a friend back to Medlock (which is also where the name comes from) after he’d had a few too many and he was sat outside the gate and said to matt ‘Your aren’t just a room mate. You’re a true mate,” and it stuck with the two of us instantly.”
“These tracks do bring back an element of nostalgia…”
DID YOU SET OUT TO WRITE MUSIC THAT WOULD BE SO RELATABLE TO OTHER PEOPLE?
Matt (vocals) – It was never the intention I don’t think. The lyrics in our songs are very specific to what we were going through at the time we wrote them, singing about the mould on the ceiling and people breaking our skink etc.. All of it no matter how specific is just a reflection of uni life and I think most can relate to that.
Luke (guitar) – I think that was just a happy accident really.
DO YOU FEEL IN YEARS TO COME MEDLOCK, AND WHERE YOU WERE WHEN YOU BOTH WROTE AND RELEASED, ‘MEDLOCK’ WILL BE A TIME CAPSULE FOR YOU ARE AS BOTH A BAND AND AS PEOPLE?
Matt (vocals) – Yeah, I know i’ve mentioned it a lot already but the whole EP represents a time in our lives where we as a band and friends lived together and were inseparable, I can imagine listening to the EP years down the EP with trigger a lot of nostalgia. Now we are finished with uni our music and themes will be new and fresh, hopefully still relatable.
LIKE BANDS SUCH AS BASEMENT AND THRICE, DO YOU ALSO WANT YOUR LISTENERS AND FANS, AS WELL AS YOUR MUSIC TO GROW WITH YOU OVER THE YEARS?
Matt (vocals) – Definitely, we want our music to be accessible as possible to anyone but it’s important that we evolve and don’t stand still, not just for the listener but we as a band don’t wanna get bored stuck in the same style forever, we wanna experiment with new stuff and hope keep fans and gain new ones on the way.
Luke (guitar) – Yes we definitely want our sound to grow with us and our fans because who wants to be playing the same thing forever, we want to experiment as much as possible so we can at least say we tried something new.
FINALLY, YOU’RE ALSO ALL KNOWN AS PEOPLE WITHIN THE MANCHESTER SCENE. HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO BE AN ACTIVE MEMBER OF YOUR LOCAL SCENE?
Matt (vocals) – I think it’s really important, the more underground scenes are always in a higher risk of fading away if people don’t act and keep it alive.
Luke (guitar) – I think being active in your local scene is so important whether it be you playing or just attending shows because as I’m sure you’ve heard before all of your favourite bands were local bands once and the more bands make it out of a local scene to bigger and better shows the more vibrant that local scene becomes.
MEDLOCK SUPPORT COAST TO COAST IN MANCHESTER ON THE 24TH OCTOBER. ‘MEDLOCK’ IS OUT NOW.