Already Heard
INTERVIEW: NECK DEEP
Without a doubt Neck Deep are one of this years breakout bands. After kicking off the year
with the release of their debut LP, 'Wishful Thinking', the Wrexham pop-punk five piece
haven’t stopped touring since. From festival appearances throughout the UK and Europe to 2 months in North America as part of the Vans Warped Tour. We caught up with vocalist Ben Barlow and bassist Fil Thorpe-Evans at the Leeds Festival. They discussed their past festival experiences, supporting Blink-182, their up and coming UK headline tour and being
“leaders” of the UK pop-punk movement.
FIVES: MUST HEAR SEPTEMBER 2014 RELEASES
With the festival season more or less over for another year, it’s time for a whole load of
exciting releases to see the light of day. September sees a plethora of exciting releases, so much so that the Already Heard team were spoilt for choices when it came to picking this months must hear releases. Nevertheless they've completed the tricky task and picked out their five must-hear releases for the coming month.
INTERVIEW: LONELY THE BRAVE
Packing stadium sized rock anthems with an incredibly striking emotional punch, and graced with one of the most staggeringly unique vocal talents to have graced the UK Rock scene in a long time, Cambridge’s Lonely The Brave have become one of the single most talked about new bands to emerge in recent years. With their debut album ‘The Day’s War’ finally released this week, Already Heard caught up with lead guitarist Mark Trotter and Bassist
Andrew Bushen at last weekend’s Leeds Festival.
INTERVIEW: NECK DEEP
Without a doubt Neck Deep are one of this years breakout bands. After kicking off the year
with the release of their debut LP, 'Wishful Thinking', the Wrexham pop-punk five piece
haven’t stopped touring since. From festival appearances throughout the UK and Europe to 2 months in North America as part of the Vans Warped Tour. We caught up with vocalist Ben Barlow and bassist Fil Thorpe-Evans at the Leeds Festival. They discussed their past festival experiences, supporting Blink-182, their up and coming UK headline tour and being
“leaders” of the UK pop-punk movement.
FESTIVAL PREVIEW: READING AND LEEDS FESTIVAL 2014 - 20 MUST-SEE ACTS
It’s no doubt it has been an incredible summer of music, and it’s not over yet as the legendary Reading and Leeds Festival takes place this weekend. With dozens of acts playing across 8 stages over 3 days, there is lot to choose from. As always the Already Heard team has got together to pick out what we think are the 20 must-see acts at Reading and Leeds 2014.
HEVY FEST 2014
Check out our full coverage from this years Hevy Fest right here!


Interview: Lonely The Brave

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Packing stadium sized rock anthems with an incredibly striking emotional punch, and graced with one of the most staggeringly unique vocal talents to have graced the UK Rock scene in an awfully long time, Cambridge’s Lonely The Brave have become one of the single most talked about new bands to emerge in recent years.

With their debut album ‘The Day’s War’ finally released this week, Already Heard caught up with lead guitarist Mark Trotter and Bassist Andrew Bushen shortly after the band’s stellar set on the Radio One/NME Stage at last weekend’s Leeds Festival.

AH: It seemed like the set went really well and drew a decent crowd for so early on the festival’s final day. How are you feeling?
Mark: We were really lucky. We were saying earlier, Sunday lunchtime we’d probably still be in bed ourselves. We were just grateful that people got up to see our little band from Cambridge. It’s pretty amazing.

Andrew: I was absolutely blown away by the response; it was a fantastic crowd. I’m glad everyone was still feeling up to having a turn out on Sunday morning.

AH: It’s been a busy festival season for the band already, has it been the high point of what has already been a remarkable year for Lonely The Brave?
Mark: It’s been bonkers. That’s the only way to describe it. We’ve been pretty much everywhere that would have us. That’s the honest way to put it.

Andrew: It’s been a busy year all round but the summer has been crazy. We’ve been to lots of places in Europe and done most of the UK festivals. We’ve had an amazing time.

AH: While you’ve been playing all the other festivals, have Reading and Leeds been the big ones on the horizon that you were looking forward to?
Andrew: I’ve been to lots of Reading Festivals as it’s near where I live. They are legendary events Reading and Leeds and it’s always an absolute honour to play.

Mark: We’d be here as punters even if we weren’t playing, so being able to be here and be on the other side of the fence is pretty special. We feel very lucky.

AH: Has it been hard to believe how quickly things have grown for Lonely The Brave over the last year or so?
Mark: This year has been mad, and we have to keep reminding ourselves that all of it has been off of the back of one EP. We were worried about doing this festival season because the album’s not out. We thought with the delays that there would be nobody here, I mean why would there be people coming to watch us. Fortunately there have been.

Andrew: Originally the album was going to be out at the start of June and we would have had that to push and we would have something more out there. Like Mark said, on the back of just a few singles things have been amazing.

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Interview: Neck Deep

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Love them or hate them, Neck Deep are one of 2014’s breakthrough bands. After kicking off the year with the release of their debut LP, 'Wishful Thinking', the Wrexham pop-punk five piece haven’t stopped touring since. With festival appearances throughout the UK and Europe earlier in the year, they’ve recently returned from two months in North America as part of the Vans Warped Tour.

We caught up with the band back on home soil. Having recently supported their idols Blink-182, Already Heard spoke to vocalist Ben Barlow and bassist Fil Thorpe-Evans at the recent Leeds Festival.

Ben and Fil discussed their past festival experiences, supporting Blink-182, their up and coming UK headline tour and being “leaders” of the UK pop-punk movement.

AH: For starters can I get your name and role in the band?
Fil: I’m Fil. I play bass within the band Neck Deep.

Ben: I’m Ben. I sing in the band Neck Deep.

AH: This is your first time at Leeds. What are your expectations?
Ben: Well it’s our first time playing but we’ve attended before so we sort of know what to expect. I know Leeds crowds can be pretty rowdy. I know, if anything, Leeds is the messier half of Reading and Leeds. I’m expecting some rowdiness. I’m just expecting a lot of kids to come down. I’ve seen a few t-shirts knocking around. I think we will have a decent crowd.

Fil: There’s been a lot of build up to it because it’s been so long since we found out, it’s been growing and growing, now we’re here. So it’s like, “Ok, so how many people are actually come and see us?” Originally there was talk of us doing main stage, (and) we decided that wasn’t really for us. We didn’t think our crowd would “get it” on there and it would be too for us.

Ben: Yeah it would be too early for us to get out of bed.

Fil: We thought we would do the ranks at the Lock Up and work our way up. We didn’t want to go straight to the main stage. We’re really looking forward to it.

Ben: I think it’ll be good.

AH: You mentioned you’ve attended previous festivals. What are your memories from them?
Fil: I came to Leeds when the Kings of Leon headlined. It was the year I finished my GCSE’s because I remember my Mum called me with my results whilst I was camping. I did early bird ticket and went mental. So sick! I spent most of my day at the tent we’re playing today; the Lock Up tent. I saw Alexisonfire and Set Your Goals; that was tight.

Ben: I’ve been the past two years. Definitely the first year I came to Leeds Fest was one of the craziest times of my entire life.

Fil: Oh The Prodigy! That was the year I went. That was crazy! I remembered being absolutely lethered watching them. I was so far back but I was going crazy. I was like, “This is the best thing ever.”

Ben: Last year was decent. The first year I didn’t watch that many bands because it was that mental. We just fucked around all day. But last year I did actually go round and watch some bands. Biffy Clyro were sick, Green Day were sick last year. I saw Hacktivist and Eminem. Last year was fucking sick. I’m glad to have experienced from the mental side of it and the musical side of it.

Fil: I’ve only done it the once because it usually falls on my birthday, so I’m usually doing something when its on.

Ben: It’s just a good mix for everyone. It’s a good festival. It’s a really well-balanced line-up.

Fil: You just feel at home.

Ben: Yeah. It feels like this should be our festival in terms of the festival I would choose go to. Like Download is a heavy festival and I like it but sometimes the crowd there are a bit more “rock-orientated.” I think we fit more into this.

Fil: Yeah and it’s the sort of bands and music we like to listen to.

Ben: If there was a festival for us to play in the UK, it would be Reading and Leeds.

AH: Are there any bands you’re wanting to see whilst you’re here?
Fil: Blink obviously. A Day To Remember, Paramore, You Me At Six.

Ben: We miss Arctic Monkeys because we’re staying here tomorrow and then because we’re playing Reading on Sunday and they’re here. So we don’t get to see them which sucks. But yeah Blink, The Wonder Years, Flume. There’s a couple of DJ’s I want to see. There’s some really good bands. I think this is genuinely the best line-up since I’ve been going. If I wasn’t playing this year, I would probably still be here.

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Interview: Me Vs Hero

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In the ever changing music scene, four years between album releases can seem like a lifetime, however for North West pop-punks Me Vs Hero, they’ve come through a troublesome time which saw members come and go and lead vocalist Sam Thompson becoming homeless for a brief time. Now they’re back on their feet and with a new album, 'I'm Completely Fine', and with a UK tour nearing ever closer, we thought it’d be a good time catch up with the band.

The new record is more focused yet has that distinctive pop-punk sound that Me Vs Hero have honed over the years. Lyrically it takes a more thoughtful route, which is fully understandable considering Thompson’s recent struggles. Nevertheless 'I'm Completely Fine' is a throughly boisterous album that sees Me Vs Hero pick up where they left off.

Senior Editor Sean Reid recently caught up with Sam and guitarist Bobby Pook following their appearance at the Hevy Fest where he quizzed them about the new record. The pair obliged and discussed the making of 'I'm Completely Fine' in great detail.

AH: Can I get your names and role in the band?
Sam: My name is Bobby Pook and play the guitar.

Bobby: My name is Sam Thompson and I am the best vocalist in the entire world.

Sam: Aww you little…

AH: So this is your return to Hevy. You first played here in 2011. How does it feel to be back here?
Bobby: Good. It feels great. I like this festival even though it’s small; it’s still good though. It gets a lot of the bands who wouldn’t get on the other festivals. It’s a cool thing.

AH: How did your set go earlier?
Bobby: I think it went well.

Sam: Yeah it was good. For us its the first time we’re playing a lot of new songs , so besides the fact that we set off at 7 this morning with no sleep because we both work long hours.

Bobby: We basically had no sleep.

Sam: But apart from being really tired and a little ill, we enjoyed it. It’s a nice day and we played the main stage, which had a lot of space.

AH: I’m guessing this is the start of the album cycle?
Bobby: Yeah it’s easing us into it.

AH: What can you tell us about the album ('I'm Completey Fine')?
Sam: It’s new but old. We started writing it like four years and probably finish 2 years ago. It’s taken awhile to get it out.

Bobby: We’ve grown older, so Sam’s lyrics are a lot more mature.

Sam: Yeah the first album was literally lyrics about anything.

Bobby: There has definitely been a lot more thought into it. It makes you prouder of the final product.

Sam: I was sitting in a coffee shop trying to write lyrics when I had no home to go to. It’s more about the sort of struggles we’ve gone through and we go through as people in life. It actually means something. They are relatable to us, wheather they are relatable to anyone else I don’t know.

AH: You mentioned the four year gap between releases. So did you start writing four years ago?
Bobby: It was slow paced. We started writing a couple of songs four years ago then it was a really slow pace. Dee, our drummer left, then it was finding a new drummer and teaching him the new songs and starting back from scratch.

Sam: Our guitarist Ross left.

Bobby: So we got a new guitarist then that happened again. So it was a struggle but we did it and we’re proud of the final product.

AH: How have Grant and Simon fitted into the band? Have they settled in?
Bobby: Yeah. They’re both great. Simon is a great drummer and Grant is a fantastic guitarist. To be honest it is the best we’ve soudned live for years.

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Interview: The Safety Fire

Ever since the release of their sophomore LP, 'Mouth of Swords' last September, London prog metallers The Safety Fire have been eating the fruit of their labor with a growing fan base, tours alongside Protest The Hero and Between The Buried and Me on both sides of the Atlantic, and most recently, a handful of UK festival appearances throughout the summer.

'Mouth of Swords' sees The Safety Fire's mix of rapid riffs, blistering drums and catchy hooks is pulled off in an unbelievably good fashion. However there is no slowing down for the quintet as work on album number 3 is in the early stages.

Already Heard met up with guitarist Joaquin “Joe” Ardiles and Lori Peri at the second of four of those aforementioned festival appearances - UK Tech Fest.

Having played Sonisphere the week previously, and with their return to Hevy Fest approaching, Joe and Lori discussed their recent festival experiences, the comparison between festival and club shows, and more.

Already Heard: Just for the record can I get your names and role in the band?
Lori: I’m Lori and I play bass.

Joe: I’m Joe and I play guitar.

AH: I’m guessing you’ve not been around Tech Fest for too long.
Joe: Yeah we got here today. We got here at about 12pm.

Lori: We left London about half 9/10am.

AH: How have you found it so far?
Joe: Yeah good man. It’s chill man.

Lori: It’s cool.

Joe: We’ve never played here before so it’s the first time we’ve been, so I didn’t know what to expect but the guy running it (Simon Garrod) has done a good job. It’s impressive.

AH: It’s the first time it’s happened in Newark, and I’m from here. Like you said it’s impressive. Well laid out, intimate and has a strong community feel to it.
Lori: Yes that’s the key to it. That’s the most important factor of it - community.

Joe: This whole scene is about that though.

AH: Have you checked out any bands yet?
Joe: I saw a bit of Alaya, and the band before them.

Lori: Aeolist.

Joe: They were pretty cool.

Lori: I had never heard of them before, and I thought, “This is actually pretty good.”

Joe: We’ve been catching up with some friends we haven’t seen in awhile.

AH: Is that what you like about festivals the most?
Joe: Yeah and luckily this is quite small so you’re going to bump into so many people.

Lori: I’m still trying to find my mate Ollie, formerly the bass player from The Haarp Machine.

Joe: Oh Ollie’s here?

Lori: He’s here man. I’ve got to see him. We went on a search for Kaan from No Consequence, we found him. That was great, love that guy. A lot of our friends are around.

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Interview: Exist Immortal

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Having released one of the most impressive UK metal releases of the year so far in 'Darkness of an Age', London five piece Exist Immortal are riding a wave of momentum. With their mix of chugging riffs and soaring melodies, Exist Immortal recently made their return to UK Tech Fest; their third appearance in as many years.

After being one of the highlights of the weekend, we caught up with four-fifths of the band to discuss their return to Tech Fest, future plans and we find out what is on their van stereo playlist.

Already Heard: Can we get your names and role in band?
Tom: I’m Tom. I play guitar.

David: I’m David. I play bass.

Meyrick: I’m Meyrick and I sing.

Kurt: I’m Kurt and play guitar.

AH: It’s your third time at Tech Fest. As “veterans” of the festival, how does it feel to back here again?
Meyrick: Yes we’ve got the hat-trick. It’s amazing. We were only added to the bill a week and half ago.

Tom: But its cool to be added to this bill. I mean anytime you get to support The Ocean and Sikth. It’s just cool to be back, and having seen the festival grow from strength to strength in size every year. It’s a cool place to be.

AH: What do you like about Tech Fest most?
Tom: The vibe.

David: The community.

Kurt: You walk 5 minutes, and you bump into a friend.

Meyrick: There’s no beef with anyone, and there’s no divide between bands and crowd. You just wonder around seeing people you know. I like to call it “Hang Fest” haha.

AH: Have you been here all weekend?
Kurt: I only arrived here this morning due to work but the rest of the boys have been.

David: We’ve been here since Friday evening.

AH: Who have you seen so far?
Tom: Devil Sold His Soul, Acoda.

David: Jom Gomm was spectacular yesterday.

Meyrick: It was the chillest thing.

AH: So ‘Darkness of an Age’ recently came out. How has the response been so far?
Tom: Really good.

AH: We gave it a 4 out of 5 rating.
Meyrick: Thank you very much.

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Interview: TesseracT

For Milton Keynes’ progressive metal act TesseracT, Sonisphere 2014 marked a new beginning for the quintet. Having parted ways with Ashe O’Hara weeks before the band’s appearance, the band have been re-joined by former vocalist Daniel Tompkins and are now set to tour the UK and Europe later this year before beginning work on album number three.

As Already Heard learned, the future is bright for TesseracT as new material promises to continue the band’s evolution to becoming more melodic yet as intricate as ever.

Fresh from opening the Apollo stage on the second day of Sonisphere, we spoke to bassist Amos Williams for a detailed talk on how the band reunited with Daniel Tompkins, their third album and their upcoming UK and European tour with Animals As Leaders.

AH: Can we get your name and role in the band?
Amos: Hey whats up. This is Amos. I’m the bass player in Tesseract.

AH: So how have you found Sonisphere so far?
Amos: Sonisphere is probably the best festival, well for me at least the best heavy festival that you’re going to get in the UK. It is just really well laid out, you go from one band to another. There is a lot of variation as well. It is not like the same old stuff, and they tend to get quite exciting bands as well but different acts from all over the world, so it is fantastic to come here and see. Tomorrow (Sunday) is awesome, you’ve got Devin Townsend, Protest The Hero, Karnivool, and Dream Theatre; it is going to be such a good day.

AH: Have you had chance to watch any bands so far?
Amos: Today I’ve had no time at all. I turned up at 6am, that was annoying, and then I was playing at 11am and then I’ve had no time at all to see anybody. I;m maybe going to catch Slayer later. Last time I saw Slayer was fantastic. Unfortunately Jeff Hanneman has died since then, so that sucks but it’s still Slayer though. Obviously Dave Lombardo is not going to be playing drums but it is still Kerry King and Tom Araya. Slayer was a big thing for me when I was a kid. So hopefully they’ll be good.

AH: Are you going to be here tomorrow as well?
Amos: I’m going to try and come back tomorrow. I just want to see my buddies in Devin Townsend Project, Karnivool and Protest The Hero. I hate to say but I’m really not that fussed about seeing anyone else. It is just that when you’re a touring band, you make friends, really good friends with people. Like today, some friends of ours, The Safety Fire, were playing, and I had no time to see them because I was just too busy. I love hanging out with my friends. You get to see them once every six or so months because you’re working so you try and make as much of the opportunity. I just saw most of the Devin Townsend Project, I was like, “Ok dude stay here. I’ll be back in 4 hours when I have finished with press, and I will come and see you.” We only see each other at random places. Last time I saw them was in Norway 4 months ago, and we spent about 10 hours together. Just hanging out and having a good time. They are like family to us, but because obviously they’re Canadian and we’re from the UK, we rarely get to see each other but only on the road. You’ve got to make the most of the chance.

AH: Is that what you enjoy about festivals most? That you get to see friends you don’t see often?
Amos: Yes that is it. It’s my favourite thing because random people you haven’t seen for a couple of years is perfect.

AH: You played early on the main stage. How did you find it playing so early?
Amos: We were really surprised. We were thinking “the weather is a bit bad, it’s really early” but we had a massive crowd. Even more so, it’s light so you can see them. In the dark you can’t see them, only 10 or 20 rows. We were lucky. There were thousands upon thousands people there, and we had quite a few fans which is even better. It’s really nice to see people wearing our t-shirts, so that kind of makes you think you’re doing something right. Main stage is an achievement in itself, but playing the main stage with people watching, wearing your t-shirt, singing along, that makes you feel like you’re doing something good.

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Interview: 65daysofstatic

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For Sheffield instrumental/experimental noise four-piece 65daysofstatic, the metal and hard rock hybrid that is the Sonisphere Festival may not ideally be their type of event, nevertheless, having made an overwhelming appearance 4 years ago, they returned once more to close out the opening night.

The past 12 months has been a busy time for 65daysofstatic, from the release of their fifth full-length 'Wild Light' last September to touring the UK and Europe to celebrating the 10th anniversary of their debut record - 'The Fall of Math'.

However with more UK/European festivals lined up, we spoke to Paul Wolinski before their late night set at Sonisphere to discuss 10 years of 'The Fall of Math', making music for record and live purposes, using coding to create music and more.

AH: Can we get your name and role in the band?
Paul: I’m Paul. I do guitar, piano and electronic things.

AH: How has your Sonisphere experience been so far?
Paul: Its ok. I’ve seen a lot of carparks, a lot of portakabins. I’ve not had chance to see any bands yet but I’m hoping that will change. Just as long as I see Atari Teenage Riot.

AH: Any other bands you’re wanting to see?
Paul: There is loads of stuff on the other days but we’re only here for the day. Therapy? are doing ‘Infernal Love’ from start to finish. That album meant a lot to me when I was growing up. Deftones tomorrow and Prodigy tonight as as well.

AH: You’re playing a late night set after The Prodigy have finished on the main stage.
Paul: Yeah after they play everything stops its just us.

AH: And the wrestling.
Paul: Oh yeah, and the wrestling. So yeah it’s going to be interesting.

AH: Because you’re an instrumental band are you used to being the odd band out when it comes to festivals like Sonisphere?
Paul: Yes! No matter what festival we get invited to, we’re always a little bit to the left, and that’s fine. I really like how we can do this type of show and go inbetween different places.

AH: Do you think it also gives you the opportunity to reach new fans?
Paul: I think so. All festivals are good for that. It will be interesting to see how tonight goes. The first time we played here was 4 years ago and it was a great show. It did feel like there was a lot of new people, and it took a little while to win them over. Maybe see our name, a long multi- syllable name, they expect ISIS-style post-rock and we’re really nothing like that at all, but halfway through the set it was wonderful. It will be interesting to start again or people from before come back and see us again.

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Interview: Palm Reader

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Although it hasn’t been long since we last spoke to Palm Reader at Hit The Deck, we thought it’d be good to catch up with the band as they spend the summer playing numerous festivals and shows.

Even though work on album number 2 is ongoing, the Woking quintet have still found time to play festivals such as Festivile, Ghostfest and Sonisphere, which is where we spoke to vocalist Josh Mckeown and guitarist Sam Rondeau-Smith.

Having played the Jägermeister Stage on the final day of the festival, the pair discussed their festival highlights, what they have learned from playing festivals, and more.

AH: Can we get your names and role in the band?
Sam: I’m Sam. I play guitar.

Josh: I’m Josh. I shout.

AH: So how has Sonisphere been for you so far?
Josh: Fantastic. We got here on Friday and we’ve just been chilling out until we played.

AH: How was your set earlier today?
Josh: Yeah we played at 1 in the afternoon on the Jägermeister stage. It was good, bloody warm though. I had shorts on as well for fucks sake.

Sam: It was nice. It’s the first festival where we actually stayed for the whole thing. Normally we’re just off having to do something else, or we’re not allowed to stay. So its nice being here for the whole thing.

AH: What bands have you seen since being here on Friday?
Sam: Deftones, Baby Metal.

AH: What did you think to them?
Sam: Fucking brilliant.

Josh: We also saw Hang The Bastard, 65Daysofstatic for a little bit, The Hell.

AH: What have been your highlights?
Sam: For me Deftones. They are just fucking shit hot aren’t they? I saw the majority of Krokodil earlier, they were on after us. They were heavy as balls! I tried to catch a bit of Gallows on the way over here, but we had to come and do interviews.

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Interview: Silverstein

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With 7 full-lengths and a handful of EPs to their name, Canadian post-hardcore band Silverstein have become one their biggest alternative musical exports since forming in 2000. However, after a lack of UK shows in recent years, the five-piece made a brief stop over for the recent Sonisphere Festival.

Having spent the past few weeks touring mainland Europe, guitarists Josh Bradford and Paul Marc Rousseau were in high spirits when we spoke to the pair ahead of their appearance on the Satellite stage.

The apologetic duo discussed the comparison between UK/EU and North American festivals, picking a festival setlist, being part of Hopeless Records and then apologised again for not coming to the UK more often. Thankfully they will be appearing at the Hevy Festival in August. Until then take a read of our interview.

AH: Just for the record, can I get your names and role in the band?
Josh: I’m Josh and I play guitar.

Paul Marc: I’m Paul Marc and I also play guitar in the band Silverstein.

Josh: Boom! Silverstein!

Paul Marc: Which is the same band he’s in.

Josh: I’m also in the band Silverstein with my friend Paul Marc who plays guitar, while I play guitar. Together we play guitar.

AH: You’ve been round Europe, so I guess you’ve not seen much of Sonisphere so far?
Paul Marc: No we got here a few short hours ago.

AH: How was the trip over?
Paul Marc: Not long actually.

Josh: My favourite part is always the ferry. I think I do some of my best sleeping whilst rocking and rolling on those gentle seas.

AH: You get rocked to sleep?!
Josh: Yeah. It’s quite nice.

AH: Where have you come from?
Paul Marc: We’ve come from Munster, Germany.

Josh: But originally we live in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (laughs).

AH: So you’re back in the UK for the first time in quite awhile. How does it feel to be back here?
Josh: You know better than I thought, its quite nice actually.

Paul Marc: It’s not raining yet.

Josh: There’s a bit of sunshine. There are some great bands playing today.

Paul Marc: It has been a little easier to understand the general chatter around us.

Josh: Same language.

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Interview: Blitz Kids

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For Blitz Kids, 2014 has been a busy year so far. Since releasing the much anticipated 'The Good Youth' LP in January, the Cheshire quartet have been all over the UK and Europe.

Having already appeared at several festivals (Slam Dunk, Groezrock, Nova Rock, British Summer Time), Blitz Kids recently found themselves at the Sonisphere Festival at the legendary Knebworth House.

After pulling in an impressive crowd on the Bohemia stage earlier on the Saturday, we caught up with vocalist Joey James and bassist Nic Montgomery to find out how their year has been so far, their October UK headline tour, their festival highlights and more.

AH: Just for the record, can I get your names and role in the band?
Joey: My name is Joey and I sing.

Nic: I’m Nic and I’m the bass player.

AH: You played on the Bohemia stage earlier today, how did it go?
Nic: It went really really well. 

Joey: We were really surprised as this isn’t necessarily our type of crowd. So we had to win people over. I was taking note during the set, and it seemed to keep filing and filling up. It didn’t seem people were leaving, so I think we did pretty well.

Nic: I think we ended up with something like 5000 in there at the end.

AH: Is this your first time at Sonisphere?
Joey: No we’ve been here once before, about 3 years ago I think. We played on the Red Bull stage. It was basically as we were starting out, so we were on really early and didn’t really play to anybody. So for us it was just get some festival experience. We camped, played and had a great time.

The next time I came just as a punter with Jono (guitarist) when Biffy headlined with Slipknot as well. That was so good. That was one of my favourite festivals I think.

AH: Have you had chance to see any bands today?
Joey: We watched Baby Metal. They were a good wake up call. We actually haven’t had chance to see anyone else yet. I think we’re going to see Hundred Reasons later. We have to!

AH: What did you think to Baby Metal?
Joey: I thought they were wicked. They were really fucking mental.

Nic: They woke me up.

Joey: It’s fun. They’re a great festival band.

Nic: But the backing band is astonishing.

Joey: Thoses solos! That bass solo.

AH: Yesterday you played the British Summer Time festival in Hyde Park. How was that?
Joey: Amazing. It was hot as hell. It was really good.

Nic: Nice to check off the list that we played with Black Sabbath.

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Interview: The One Hundred

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For a new band like London quartet The One Hundred, playing a festival such as Sonisphere is a huge opportunity to get seen by many new faces. However, having witnessed their 30 minutes of genre-mashing blend of metal, rap and electronica, it is safe to say The One Hundred made a significant impression to those who woke up early on Sunday to see their set in the Satellite tent.

Having successfully made their festival debut, we spoke to vocalist Jacob Field and guitarist Tim Hider to find out what they thought to their festival debut. The pair also discussed their forthcoming debut EP and we find out what lessons they’ve learned from Sonisphere 2014.

Already Heard: So Sonisphere is your first ever festival?
Jacob: Yeah, first proper festival. It’s been incredible, that’s all I can say. It has been a pleasure, more than a pleasure.

Tim: It’s been a crazy experience. So many great bands and then we’re playing as well.

Jacob: It’s an added bonus. You see these festivals and you go, “I’d love to go there” then they tell you “you’re playing it” and you go “ok cool.” I get to see some bands and I’m playing it. Brilliant!

AH: Have you been here all weekend?
Tim: Yeah I’ve been here since Thursday.

Jacob: The party animal has been here since Thursday morning.

Tim: I’m still going strong. He’s been here 2 days and he’s already tired and wants to go home (laughs).

Jacob: I don’t want to go home. I’m just bit of a princess, I’m not gonna lie. I need my beauty sleep, that is how I see it.

AH: You can’t beat having your own bed.
Jacob: No, exactly and I don’t live too far out so I might as well drive back home, have a little nap and come back again later, haha.

AH: What bands have you seen over the past few days?
Jacob: (Limp) Bizkit!

Tim: Yeah Bizkit, The Prodigy on Friday night. They were wicked.

Jacob: They were spot on.

Tim: Saw Iron Maiden last night. I saw Baby Metal on Saturday, that was interesting (everyone laughs.) Yeah they were an experience.

Jacob: You also saw The Hell.

Tim: Yeah I did.

Jacob: I saw Glamour of the Kill. They were really, really good. That was the first time I’ve properly seen them. They smashed it. So yeah we’ve seen some good bands. Today has been a bit of a write off though hasn’t it?

Tim: Yeah we’ve been busy.

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Interview: Black Dogs

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Self-proclaimed Northern Bastards Black Dogs have been turning heads up and down the UK for quite awhile now. Last year’s debut full-length, 'Grief', contained some of the most punishing splices of metalcore we’ve heard in sometime. Songs like recent single '13 Bastards' and 'Savages' are incredibly intense yet we just can’t get enough.

Currently on tour once again in the UK, and having played numerous festivals in recent months, we caught up with 3 fifths of the band at Sonisphere to discuss the video for '13 Bastards', becoming a five-piece, and the follow-up to 'Grief'.

Already Heard: To begin with can we get your names and role in the band?
Gollo: I’m Gollo. I’m the vocalist.

Zakk: I’m Zakk. I play bass.

Canty: I’m Canty. I play drums.

AH: You played earlier today on the Jagermeister stage. How was it?
Gollo: Sick mate!

Canty: Wicked!

Zakk: Absolutely awesome. We were well received. A full tent of people and we got a wall of death to finish off the set.

AH: Is this your first time at Sonisphere?
All: Yeah.

AH: Enjoying it so far?
Gollo: Yeah, good mate.

Canty: It’s pretty well laid out.

Gollo: And the weather as well. You can’t ask for better weather.

Zakk: I’m a bit too hot if anything.

AH: We hear you’ve got a new video/single out?
Gollo: Yeah for '13 Basatrds'. We shot it in Wales. It’s had a really good response. It’s a pretty dark video.

Zakk: It’s very cinematic. Even if you’ve not heard the band before, it’s worth checking out.

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Interview: Decade

Fresh off from playing to a packed out room on the Macbeth Stage, Already Heard's Dane Wright spoke to Decade at last month's Slam Dunk Festival.

Harry Norton and Joe Marriner from the band discussed the overwhelming reception from the show, the response to their debut album ('Good Luck'), becoming more than pop-punk band and more.

View more of Already Heard's Slam Dunk Festival 2014 coverage here.

'Good Luck' by Decade is out now on Spinefarm Records.

Decade links: Website|Facebook|Twitter

Interview: Flood of Red

5 years ago Scotland sextet Flood of Red were on the cusp of great things. Having recorded their debut album with Brian McTernan (Senses Fail, Circa Survive, Thrice) and toured with the likes of Twin Atlantic and We Are The Ocean, Flood of Red were part of a group of UK bands taking rock back to the mainstream. Yet despite 'Leaving Everything Behind' being well received by critics and fans, the bands willingness to be independent backfired due to poor management.

Now having undergone a slight lineup change, and joined Superball Music (65daysofstatic, Maybeshewill, Oceansize), Flood of Red have returned with their second full-length - 'Throw'. A solid, condense record that builds upon the atmospheric elements of past releases and combines it with natural musical maturity.

To find out more about the record, we spoke to vocalist Jordan Spiers. He spoke about the gap between records, joining Superball Music and more.

Already Heard: First off, could you introduce yourself and tell is what you do in Flood of Red?
Jordan: Hello! I’m Jordan and I sing in Flood of Red.

AH: It seems like a long time since we last heard from Flood of Red. Now album number 2 ('Throw') is set to be released. Why has there been such a large gap inbetween records?
Jordan: It has been a very long time, thinking about it. We toured ‘Leaving Everything Behind’ for about two years after the release and started to write more songs around that period. We then released our self released EP ‘They Must Be Building Something’ and put that out in 2012. Not long after that, our friend Calum left the band and that stretched time out a little more. We were very fortunate that our good friend Ross Taggart stepped in to help us perform on tour. After a good few run of dates we started writing with Ross and it felt like a new beginning. We took our time with the songs and let them grow with us. We recorded ‘Throw’ in late 2013 and is now all set to be released on the 30th of June this year.

AH: I know the band has undergone a slight lineup change in recent years. How has the new line-up settled and how has it helped developed FOR as a band?
Jordan: The lineup is more stronger than ever, I reckon. Writing feels stranger than before. I think it’s because it’s what we were always meant to be doing now. With everything I think a little time goes a long way.

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Interview: Frank Turner

Last month Already Heard's Dane Wright sat down with the one and only Frank Turner ahead of his rare solo show as part of the Live At Leeds Festival.

Turner discusses the nostalgic feeling behind the show, taking Beans On Toast out on his recent arena UK tour, the personal nature of last year’s 'Tape Deck Heart', protest groups at his shows and more.

Frank Turner links: Website|Facebook|Twitter