Saturday, 7 September 2013

Interview with SHIELDS

Beyond The Pale cover art

Now on Sludgelord I am interviewing self proclaimed – Medieval Power Rockers – Shields. Who recently impressed the hell out of myself and my brother when we seen them support Torche in concert at Leeds recently

Shields played a blistering set which went down a storm with the crowd in attendance. Blistering riffs played at a fast and furious pace has seen Shields been described as one of the best Stoner Metal bands Leeds has to offer.

Well I have already featured them on the blog. So I thought it would be better to get to know them that little bit more.

So lets get started with these Medieval Power Rockers. You never know, we might have a good old fashioned quest or a deadly joust.

Here is the brilliant Shields.

Q1 – Hi guys, How are things with you today. Thanks for doing this. I must apologize to you guys when I asked to do an interview with you at the Torche gig. I was slightly drunk that night. Awesome show you put on.

Jonty: I just woke up from a dream about making an omelette, so I’m pretty hungry, but I have no eggs in the house and now the shops are shut, which sucks…

Glad you liked the show, it was a lot of fun and an honour to share the stage with Torche!

Q2 – For people not in the know can you give a brief history on how the band came about.

Jonty: Oooof, here we go… Started off with Me, Paul and Cheese, Cheese left, Kev joined along with Owen, Kris joined, Kev left, Dave joined, Owen and Dave left, Si joined, Martyn joined, Martyn left, Joe joined and now here we are!

Q3 – How would you describe your sound. – Medieval Power Rockers – which I kinda dig. But I would classify the band as a Sludge/Stoner Metal Band though you do have some great medieval influences especially with your lyrics and song titles. How did you proclaim yourself as Medieval Power Rockers or is it a joke amongst yourselves.

Jonty: I think it’s it kind of hard to pin point our sound, But Power rock seems to sum it up best, it’s heavy, but not metal, it’s happy, but it’s not pop! I love heavy music, but I’m a sucker for a catchy song. Party doom, is one of my favourite descriptions we’ve had. The Medieval bit I guess is a bit of a joke, but with the name and some of the lyrics, it seems quite fitting

Q4 – You have released two excellent EP's so for. Both of which have been well received. Have you been happy with the praise so far.

Kris: The only praise that we really listen to is praise from other bands that we admire, that's what means the most to us. We've been happy with how they've been received though yeh.

Q5 – Which bands and artists influenced you as musicians

Kris: We all like different stuff, influence-wise I'd say Baroness and Mastodon are a pretty big influence on us.

Q6 – What is the song writing process in the band. Is it a collective partnership or down to just one individual.

Kris: Normally Jonty writes the riffs, then we jam it out as a band, then I write the lyrics. Sometimes Jonty comes in with lyrics already written and if I like them I use them. Otherwise I set them alight and throw the ashes in his face. I'm nice like that.

Q7 – Leeds has an excellent live scene with many great bands to check out. Such as yourselves, Envoys, Sunwolf, Trees Of Sores, Hawk Eyes and sadly no longer with us – WIHT. Do you get loads of live gigs in Leeds or do you have to travel further afield to perform regularly.

Kris: We play Leeds pretty regularly, we're like the house band at the Brudenell at the moment! We like to get out as well, Bungalows & Bears in Sheffield is probably our favourite venue. The crowd is always great there and we get to see our Sheffield pals.

Q8 – What are your favourite bands you are currently listening to. Any bands that myself or our readers should check out.

Kris: I'm mostly listening to anything Icelandic at the moment. Sigur Rós, Kvelertak and Of Monsters & Men. Also Gojira, you can't really go wrong with them!

Q9 – Your music has a great sense of humour. Was that always the plan to include humour in your music to match the Sludge/Stoner Metal riffs.

Jonty: Yeah it was always intentional, we don’t like to take ourselves too seriously. Playing music is supposed to be fun, so we make it so for ourselves and the audience, we let the music speak for it’s self but just have a bit of fun with it!

Q10 - What are your views of bands using websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo to fund their new album releases. Some people and bands are for it. Some are not. Would you consider doing some thing like that yourselves.

Kris: I don't have a problem with that, it gets people involved and offsets the losses of everyone stealing your music!

Q11 – Obviously you all have day jobs to contend with. How hard is it to perform with Shields when planning it around your normal lives. Or is being a musician your full time job.

Kris: As a trained assassin I choose my own hours so there's always time for Shields.

Q12 - How big of a help has BandCamp been in getting your music across to the masses.

Kris: It's great, especially the pay what you like option cos people can download it or pay so you don't limit your audience but you still get money!

Q13 – I know I have seen you guys in action but in five words what is the Shields live experience like (For the record I would say – Awesome, loud head-banging riffs)

Jonty: Big slice of riff pie!

Q14 – What are your views of blogs such as Sludgelord featuring and reviewing your records

Kris: We love it!

Q15 – So can we expect a full length record or new EP any time soon.

Kris: That is next on our agenda, we just demoed a load of new tracks with our pal Rob from Pulled Apart By Horses, we're gonna be recording an album soon!

Q16 - What are the most and least rewarding aspects of participating with the band? Obviously, the reality of how expensive it is being in a band could be considered as a negative aspect

Jonty: The most rewarding is having people appreciate something you have been part of creating, for someone to say “that was an awesome gig” is just a massive complement, makes it all seem worthwhile. The worst has to be the cost, it ain’t cheap!

Q17 - If you could provide words to wisdom for people wanting to start a band – What would they be.

Jonty: Tune down, rock out don’t be afraid to do something different and fucking have some fun!

Q18 - What pisses you off most in music. Or do you not let the bad things in music stop you from performing and writing songs.

Jonty: Dubstep and twerking

Q19 – Do you have any exciting plans within the next 12 months or so.

Kris: We are changing our name, due to the annoying proliferation of other bands called Shields. And recording the album of course. Stay tuned!

Operation Thunderbolt cover art

Q20 - Finally do you have anything to say to your fans.

Jonty: Thank you, thank you and thank you!

Well guys thanks for your time. I hope to see you guys in action soon. As you really impressed the hell out of me. Definitely made me a fan. All the best.

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