Ste – Hi! Thanks for having us, we’ve been doing great thanks, been heavily at the grindstone preparing this EP, and we’re super excited for the release!
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “To Be Honest”?
Jake – To Be Honest is broadly about being in social situations that you haven’t thus far been used to and trying your hardest to be normal and fun to be around when the inside of your head is screaming at you to “get out now”. The answer is very often to put on your confident face, drink more and get through it; it’s kind of a challenge to the stereotypical “be yourself” mantra.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
Jake – Yes, I had never been one for going out and getting drunk with people as I was fairly introverted in my school and college years. Moving up to uni meant that this had to change if I wanted to fit in as pretty much everything involved drinking and going out. I found myself becoming a person I didn’t expect to become and I was almost addicted to putting on that confidence face because, at the time, I preferred that person.
How was the filming process and experience behind the video?
Ste – The filming process for this was actually really fun, we were trying to come up with a cool idea that would be feasible and get the message of the track across which is where the idea from the bags on our heads came from to show the different faces we sometimes put on in different scenarios. We had the help of Lewis Cater on this one and he is really easy to work with, we had never done a video with any kind of ‘acting’ before but he helped us get right into it and we’re really happy with the end result.
The single comes off your new album Nothing Dramatic – what’s the story behind the title?
Jake – When I was writing the lyrics to this EP’s tracks, I found myself falling into the trope of writing about my own anxiety and other mental health issues I was going through. I really didn’t want to imply that my issues were anything more than what many people face in their own heads as well. In the middle eight of one of the tracks I say “Nothing Dramatic, quite the opposite of chic” which basically means I don’t presume that this is glamorous in any way; it’s just the airing of dirty laundry.
How was the recording and writing process?
Josh – When starting the writing process for the EP, we followed our usual process in which I created starting points and sent them across to everyone so we could then build on them individually and then together until they turned into full songs. We spent a lot of time tweaking each track when the songs were done as we wanted to really focus on creating more cohesive and accessible music for anyone. This involved a lot of stripping back sections and adding nuances that would improve the songs overall. ‘No Time’ was actually a late addition to the EP and this was in fact the first single we released and one of our favourites; I think this kind of writing style benefits us greatly as we could see the development of the EP as a whole, as opposed to writing individual tracks and putting them onto one record, we feel this new EP really helps to tell our story in that respect.
The recording process of this was also pretty smooth in all honesty, going into the studio we had quite up to scratch demos of all the songs so had the general basis for the whole EP prepared. Anything further that needed to be tweaked and changed was really helped along by our producer Neil Kennedy at Ranch Studios.
What role does the UK play in your music?
Alex – Being a striving musician/band in the UK is a great starting point, while being simultaneously very difficult. We visited Belgium to play a festival in a music university and spoke to various European musicians. Music like this over there is far less common, and because of this you find there is a much better market for it. The UK is full of artists and bands which means there is quite a lot of competition. This can make things incredibly difficult, but when you eventually start to get it right, there is no better place to be. The scene we’re in has developed in a way that everyone is supported. Everyone is aware of the way things are, and with the massive rise in social media usage for music, it benefits bands to help other bands.
How has Lower Than Atlantis and Enter Shikari influenced your writing?
Josh – Lower Than Atlantis was one of the largest influences for our early demos and the self-titled EP. We adored the mixture of powerful chord sequences and technicality, mixed with complete lyrical honesty and down to earth themes. It’s amazing how they would have some absolute bangers like ‘Here We Go’ with metaphorical, poetic lyricism, while also writing songs like ‘Grounded’, about your irritating mate’s brother who keeps losing his keys. No matter how big they, and their sound got, they never seemed to forget who they were as people. In this aspect, we really wanted to push into this as yet, more or less untouched area of British rock.
Ste – So Enter Shikari have had a huge effect on me personally for a number of years musically but they have a huge methodological influence on how we write. I think the inspiration we take from them is the way they keep their music current by following trends, if you look back at their catalogue you can see how they follow certain EDM styles depending on what was popular at the time from the techno inspired songs of ‘Take to the Skies’ and even the grime influence you hear in ‘The Mindsweep’. This method of writing really influences how we try to follow trends in our area to keep our music accessible to as many people as possible. We also love Rou’s honest lyricism and try to keep our lyric writing style as relatable and transparent as we can in that respect.
How did you get to balance all your different influences on this record in particular?
Jake – In previous EP’s, we’d end up making our own takes on songs we have heard and loved. We’d never rip anything off, but we’d start a song, identify what song we’d gotten that idea from, and then use that as the guideline. With this release, we really feel that each song has far more care and originality. Each song may have a mixture of 4 or 5 different influences from each member, to the point at which we lose track and it becomes just a TIRADE song. It comes from each of us mulling over the idea on our own, and coming together with different combinations of band members and making gradual progress without forcing anything.
Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?
Jake – We’ve been in a situation for a while where we’ve been being sensible, staying in a small town and making enough money to move to Manchester. We’ve been very stressed out and I personally found myself incredibly un-inspired by anything apart from that stress. The songs became very introspective and bleak thematically, while pushing those themes in a passionate way. It’s odd – I’ve never wanted to follow the tropes so many bands follow now, where they talk about how shit everything is, but I wasn’t left with much else. So, in a way, the title of the EP was meant to re-assure you that while these things massively affect us and me, there is no need nor intention to garner sympathy. It’s just an EP about what we’re going through, while acknowledging that it won’t be that way forever.
Any plans to hit the road?
Alex – Funny you should ask! We’ve been pushing our up-coming tour with Donnie Willow at the end of this month. They are a phenomenal band and lovely people and we’re super excited. We’ll be on tour from 23rd (kicking off in Glasgow) til the 28th (Manchester). If people want to find out more, come and give us a look on instagram, facebook and twitter!
What else is happening next in TIRADE’s world?
– Josh – Well apart from the plans for the EP and the tour we have this month, we look to stay super busy over the remainder of the year; we’ve got nothing announced just yet but ‘Nothing Dramatic’ will be sure to keep everyone enticed for the time being. Sorry to be so cryptic but we can assure you that 2019 is going to be a big year for TIRADE!