1. The SOU story so far please and your feelings on the voyage to date?
Me, Joe (vocals) and Paul (drums) have been playing music together since about 1996. Paul moved to Jacksonville, Florida around the time we got going and came back in 1999 which is when Sense of Urgency came into fruition with Alex Day on the bass. Within a couple of years, we had a sax (Adam G), and by the time the majority of us were 16-17, Tom Maund had come in on trombone and we where doing big headline shows around the Midlands and picking up some steam. Adam and Alex left the band around 2002 and it wasn't until 2006 kind of time when we got our shit back together with new members Tom Weevil (an old friend from the Stoke punk scene) and Holly on trumpet. Holly left a year or so later and when Maya replaced her, we knew we'd finally found the spot on group of people after all these years. Now we've got our arses in gear, got a new split out on TNS and proper enjoying everything we do. Has been an up and down 10 years, but worth it to get to here.
2. Describe your fellow band members in 5 slanderous words apiece!
They're a good bunch so hard to pick flaws
Maya - I can't. She'll beat me
Paul - Needs to get some drums
Weevil- Well educated and well fed
Joe - wears his hat to bed
Tombone - The Beefcake and band psychiatrist
3. Heroes and zeroes in life and music please?
There's so many in music. Basically, anyone who's proper passionate about what they do and wears their heart on their sleeve when they play is all you can ask for out of a musician. Ennio Morricone's probably the biggest don in music for all of the amazing scores he's put out and as far as the punk and ska scene go, I was bought up listening to the Ramones, Clash, Stiff Little Fingers, Op Ivy and Irish music, so always have a big soft spot for all people involved with those bands I was reared on. I've got respect for anyone who isn't a prick basically and seems to be very genuine about what they stand for and their music (so you can scratch the Sex Pistols off that list). Anyone who sees music as all about image/status is a bit of a cock
Also, Stanley Matthews and Mark Stein were massive Stoke heroes growing up and directors like Scorcese, Peckinpah, Leone, Mel Brooks and actors like Lugosi, Price, Bronson, Van Cleef, Cushing, Bruce Campbell, Gene Wilder are all very worthy of hero status.
4. Corned Beef cretinism - does it improve a bands output, can one reach a state of evil orgasm by overdosing on this foodstuff and would you nob Jimmy Tarbuck so as to create an antidote for the said affliction?
Was talking about corned beef the other day. Do not like it. Refuse to comment. Jimmy Tarbuck lives near my folks so a bumming would be pretty accesible. It'd be tough to decide whether to nob him or his fat daughter if I had to choose.
5. Any other interests you have besides this punky skanky passion - come on let's here the horror side of things?
Horror is a big interest yeah. Anything from old B-movies like Drive-in Massacre, the Vincent Price films, Universal Studios monster movies, Hammer, the zombie classics, cheesy 80's side of things and even a bit of modern J-Horror (though usually is hard to sift through the shit). Movies in general are a massive passion. I could happily just spend my days sitting on a couch going from one movie to the next. Same goes for decent video games (though I haven't progressed far from the NES in the last 20 years).
No-one else in SOU is that bothered but I'm also incredibly passionate about Stoke City as well but I tend to bore people with that conversation.
6. The best SOU song to date - what makes it so special, who penned it and what is it about?
I think my favourite's 'Silent Seethe' which is one of the last ones we wrote and our last song on the split. Joe wrote the majority of the lyrics and I think Tommy may have written the guitar on this one. If you listen to the stuff we were putting out years and years ago, it's just very stereotypical ska with that upbeat kind of wanky Americanised feel to it. This feels like we've put a dark edge on the genre, grown up a bit and are a lot more brutal and honest than a bunch of pricks pretending that life is so peachy and upbeat, and we all live in California brooo.
7. Tell us your views on the scene - go on put the boot in?
There's not much I can comment on. The fact is, there's some shit-arse promoters who are setting up gigs, ripping bands off and have no interest in the bands they put on. On the other hand, you've got some stand up folks who aren't making money and have a genuine love of music.
I don't think we've ever associated ourselves with a scene or anything. We just play and go to gigs we like, hear some awesome bands, meet some people who are diamonds, some who are wank, get the beers in and just have a decent time. The main positive is the amount of bands who you would never have heard of who are absolutely mint.
8. Seigfried Leopard the two-tone tosser from twatsville has recently started growing onions in his groin and tomatoes beneath his armpits. The question however is two-fold and goes like this - would you let a swarm of scorpions live beneath your foreskin for nothing more than sexual gratification and would you tattoo a portrait of Charlie Drake on your skull to promote the integration of short-arsed workaholics into the community.
I'd let the Scorpions. Wind of change moved me and European Rock has been out of the limelight too long.
I'd do whatever it took to start a movement in aid of the shorter members of the community. Unite!
9. The best and worst SOU gigs to date - spill the beans dude!
Hmm. Bolton Soundhouse the other week was pretty good. Bit empty, but good. Give me an ill attended show with a bunch of people who look they're having a mint time, over a full large venue of miserable bastards anyday. Really enjoyed the split launch in December and Bradford in January as well. When we were younger, we headlined a venue in Stoke which has hosted bands like Muse (so pretty big) and sold it out. That will always stick in the memory. There's a lot of good gigs which is a good thing.
Also, a lot of shit ones. Satchmo's in Stoke was a pretty big venue and we had 2 people watching us at a table once. They left after the first few songs so we played to the one member of bar staff and the sound guy. Luckily, we didn't have far to travel home. Maya's first gig in Leeds was shit as well. Was a big venue in a shopping centre/arcade kind of thing. Was full of fucking hippy's and the promoter didn't even really acknowledge we were there or owt. Just set up, played and fucked off not long after.
10. Cheese Helicopters - explain the drawbacks and the advantages?
Apart from mozarella it's potent, odd, horribly textured, nasty shit. I hate cheese! No advantages. None at all
Actually, I like parmesan as well!
11. Tell us about your local scene - the faces, places, disgraces and general nob-ends!
I suppose with 4 of us living in Stoke and the other 2 being previous residents, we'll call Stoke on Trent our local scene. We avoided playing gigs there like the plague til not so long ago. There was the odd good gig, poorly attended and the place reeked of apathy and all the same faces from years ago who just love to make a snide comment or 2 when they hear new music (where ska and punk is concerned anyway. I think it could be different with hardcore bands etc but not really my forte so can't comment). Thankfully, Wiv from Rising Strike has been promoting a few venues over the last year and it's beginning to pick up quite a bit. I actually look forward to playing there now and his decent nights have bought in a few punters out of the woodwork. Has done a swell job and I can see it just getting better and better.
12. Finally push the SOU cause - go, go, go!
Our aim on stage is to just cause carnage and make sure everyone goes mental. We just love playing fast, honest, adrenaline fuelled music, having a drink and chatting shit to anyone who can find us in a coherent state.