The Bang: Rory Speed Interview

by Sam Eastop

The Bang are a Scottish band that are certainly making quite a name for themselves. Playing gigs around the country, receiving air time for their songs on the radio, and notably winning the Dundee Battle of the Bands last year.
Since then, The Bang have been recording and spreading the word about their new and exciting sound to the population…and bucket-loads of praise and support seems to follow in their wake.
With top-notch songs and an excellent live performance quality, The Bang are definitely an up-and-coming band to keep an eye on.
To find out a bit more and discover what’s new with The Bang, I caught up with the band’s lead singer, Rory Speed:

Tell us a bit about how the band formed and where did the name come from?

Rory: Well the band formed a few years ago. The guitarist Stewart Black and our drummer Jamie Dunleavey formed as a younger school band which eventually fell through. Just in the past year, Stewart took a few months off to write some new material and they both started looking for a vocalist and a bassist. That’s when they came across me, and I quite rightly said, ‘yeah, I’ll take on the job!’
We were just going to be a two-piece to begin with- just guitar and drums to be a bit different, however it sounded a bit empty so we started looking for a bassist. It was at this point we took on Stewart’s brother Cameron as an additional member and it worked out really well.

‘The Bang’ came around when Stewart was looking on the back of an Arctic Monkeys t-shirt, and one of the songs was ‘Bang Bang.’ So he thought it sounded like a good name for a band, but it was already taken and so we decided to change it to ‘The Bang.’

What would you say your main musical influences are and do you fit into any genres?

Rory: We all come from different backgrounds and what we all listen to is different. A really wide variety of bands and genres such as Death Cab For Cutie who are an alternative rock band to Foo Fighters, Biffy Clyro, Led Zeppelin and The Who which all range from 40 years ago to modern day music.
I think this is great as it allows us to explore different genres but I’d say we do fit into the ‘alternative rock’ genre. We’re trying to introduce a few pop hooks [in our music] too.

What has been your favourite gig so far? Any particularly memorable ones?

Rory: I’ve had a few favourite gigs. The band ‘Make Sparks’ a signed Scottish band that played T in the Park, were a great band to play with. That was a Halloween gig so everyone was dressed up for a laugh and it turned out to be an absolutely amazing place to play, with about 200 people there. It was a good high for us.
The most memorable gig was definitely the Battle of the Bands final in Dundee. 340 people turned out to watch us play and we came out on top in the end and won a recording deal. This was really good and it’s helped us a lot with experience, seeing as we are younger than a lot of bands at the moment.

What’s your favourite song to perform and why?

Rory: It’s got to be ‘Qwerty.’ As I joined the band, I got a snippet of the instrumental and thought it was absolutely fantastic. So to put vocals over that track and play it live to a crowd is brilliant. It’s on our demo and it’s definitely a crowd pleaser, it’s so jumpy and upbeat that it seems to go down an absolute storm! It’s good fun.

Any exciting projects in the near future?

Rory: We’ve got a few coming up, we’re quite busy. Just over the next few months we’re playing with bands like Sucioperro and Page 44, really big up-and-coming bands at the moment with a lot written about them in Q magazine and Kerrang. We’re playing with Sucioperro on the 6th of April and Page 44 in Dundee on the 11th of May. So once we get some money in, it’s going to be all about recording after that and hopefully by June we’ll have a fully-fledged EP which will probably be on iTunes. Hopefully if all goes to plan, that’s us sorted.

Where do you hope to be in a few years time?

Rory: That’s a difficult question. Hopefully we’ll have built up a substantial fan base. We’re quite new, we’ve only been going for about eight months so it’s hard to say where we’ll be. But things have looked promising from the start so hopefully in the next few years we’ll be playing up and down the country to big crowds in England and Wales too. The best we can hope for is to possibly be signed and take on bigger challenges like T in the Park and things like that. We’ve had a few reviews, one of them stating that we were one of the best new live acts at the moment and that we’ll definitely be ‘on the scene’ sooner rather than later, which is really promising and exciting.

How can fans get access to your music?

Rory: Just now, through Facebook. If you type in ‘The Bang’ on Facebook we should be the top search. Our Myspace is http://www.myspace.com/thebanguk. That’s got all the details of gigs etcetera.
In the next few months, before we get out EP out, we’re getting a web page set up too. There’ll be a lot of information in the next few months coming up about gigs and different leases so keep in touch.
Peace!

Sam Eastop

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