In our latest band spotlight interview, we chat to Nine Black Alps’ Sam Forrest in Hull.
S] How important is it for you to come back to smaller places that don’t get that many gigs?
Sam] “I think it’s nice to play places that aren’t in Manchester and where we’ve played a lot, it makes it fresher for us.”
S] What’re the inspirations behind ‘NovoKaine’ and ‘Supermarket Clothes’?
Sam] “For ‘Novocaine’, I wrote it late at night on acoustic guitar about 2 AM while watching telly in the summer about two years ago, I just wanted to write a dirge and I accidentally wrote a really good chorus on it! For ‘Supermarket Clothes’ I was trying to write ‘Freak Scene’ by Dinosaur Jr. And it kind of went somewhere else I think.
S] Would you say you use Nine Black Alps and your solo work as outlets for different emotions?
Sam] “I think they are both not that far apart, it’s just that Nine Black Alps is more aggressive and I do enjoy the aggressiveness, especially live but I don’t really listen to that much loud music, there’s a few bands, but I usually listen to music when I’m falling asleep.”
S] How would you say you’ve changed as a musician over the past ten years?
Sam] “I’ve probably learned a lot more, but that’s not necessarily a good thing. I still want things to be instinctive, and I think the more you do something the harder it is to be instinctive.”
S] How do you look back on the early days and the success you’ve had?
Sam] “I think the one thing is, I’m just glad we survived it all because it’s still really fun to do music. It was a really weird time because we didn’t know each other that well before we started the band, we knew each other about a year, so that three years where we were signed to Island, it was a pretty interesting way to make friendships with people.”
S] Do you feel it’s possible for bands in the North to be successful and make a reputation for themselves up here, instead of going to London?
Sam] “I’d say if you want to be a full time musician, you’ll get more work going to London but at the same time it would be work, it wouldn’t be as much fun. You can get all wrong kind of success or the wrong kind of failure, if you fail in your own town it’s more fun than being a national failure.”
S] What would you like your legacy to be?
Sam] “Probably just to make tonnes of really good records.”
What’re the biggest challenges for you as a band?
Sam] “Financial. We’d like to be able to do things that we can’t afford as a band.”
Sam] “Usually places; all the songs are set in places in my head.”