Today’s track of the day comes courtesy of The Travelling Band with the brilliant ‘Wasted Eyes’.
Celebrating a decade together this year, it is not by mere chance or coincidence that the five-piece are still around, preparing for the release of their highly anticipated fourth album. Fuelled by a strong DIY ethic, they have not only toured all over the UK and Europe, but they have also produced their own records, started their own recording studio and founded their own label; it seems there’s not much they won’t try their hand at.
This latest track is not only the first to be revealed from their new album, but it is also part of a compilation EP titled ‘Pinhole Sounds Volume 1’, brought out by their own label Sideways Saloon and featuring some of their favourite tracks recorded in their studio such as Jo Rose & Pit Pony, Barbarisms and A. Dyjecinski. ‘Wasted Eyes’ captures the raw energy and sense of immediacy with which they wrote the songs for the upcoming album; the resounding vocal delivery backed by harmonic refrains over a heavy guitar fuzz. It’s a hook-laden rocker with a dose of nineties nostalgia thrown in.
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We caught up with the band to hear about the new song and a decade-long career…
Can you tell us about the new track ‘Wasted Eyes’? What is it about and what inspired it?
It’s a snapshot into the darker side of hedonism and how we use it to try and hide away what’s really going on inside. It doesn’t always work.
It’s going to feature on a special compilation EP. Can you tell us about how that came about?
We founded ‘Pinhole Sound Studio’ (www.pinholesoundstudio.co.uk) last year which is now the hub of all things creative for The Travelling Band and where we’ve been working on our new album. The concept of the series is to feature great music that’s either made at Pinhole or stuff that we’re liking from around the world.
How did you choose the other artists who are involved?
Our label Sideways Saloon had released A. Dyjcinksi’s album ‘The Valley of Yessiree’ earlier in the year so we thought it would be cool to put together a mini compilation featuring bands on the label as well as other stuff we dig that we’ve either been working on or discovered through our community. Jo Rose has been a longtime friend of the band and i’ve been playing some keyboards for him. ‘Mustanging’ was an obvious choice as it’s such a banger! A. Dyjecinski turned me onto Barbarisms who are from Sweden. They have a great sound and their album Browsers is killer.
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It comes out on your own record label Sideways Saloon. How did that originate?
It started as a monthly night in Manchester’s Northern Quarter at The Bay Horse back 2006/7. The label (of the same name) evolved out of a DIY ethic we decided on through a combination of necessity and idealism and not wanting to wait around for a dawdling industry to catch up with whats we were doing. Even when we’ve had records out with other labels it has been a really important outlet for the band.
You’ve been around for ten years; what have been your biggest achievements?
Our amazing fans, not dying, putting on a live music night for 8 years, starting a label, producing our own records, starting a studio, not dying, carrying on, staying together…
Have you found the music industry has changed dramatically since you started out?
A great deal. This has been the age of the democratisation of music through technology. Hit records can made on laptops or in amazing analogue studios, music can distributed through laptops or indie record shop on vinyl. It’s up to the creator/consumer. Music is cheaper to produce and also has arguably less monetary value, but at the same time an artist can sell direct to their fanbase and cut out the middleman. It’s hard to get your head around it sometimes but i think if you stay true to what you’re doing and not get too bummed out by it all, then it’s a great time to a musician. You can create your own boundaries and not be beholden to anyone else, or you can happily suck the corporate teat. Or both.
Your fourth album is on the horizon; does it mark a development in your sound?
There’s always a shift, sometimes it’s a conscious decision on songwriting process, other times it’s simply changing the instrumentation you’re playing. The next album was approached in a way to eliminate the space between inception and recording. Capture the moment the idea has first flowered rather than waiting to see if it will get more pretty with time and cultivation.