Liverpools ‘Honey Motel’ are made up of Matthew Walker (front-man), Sam Meredith (lead-guitarist), Jack Hughes (bassman) and Paul “Pablo” Robinson (drummer). The band only formed in 2020 and have exploded onto the scene with their dynamic indie sound and relentless energy. I caught up with them to find out about lockdown has being treating them and their plans for 2021.
Please introduce yourselves to our readers, who you are and how you formed?
Hi there! We’re Honey Motel, a 4-piece indie rock band from Liverpool. We consist of Walker (frontman), Sam Meredith (Lead Guitar and synth), Jack Hughes (Bass) and Paul ‘Pablo’ Robinson (Drums). Me, Sam and Pab started playing music together about 3 years ago, just playing covers and making some horrible original music. It wasn’t until we added Jack to our band, started making some better songs and decided to brand ourselves seriously that we properly gave this band a go.
What style of music would you describe yourself as and what influences do you draw upon?
That’s a tough question to answer really! I think we’d definitely describe ourselves as Indie Rock, if not a bit of Indie Pop as well. I think it’s tough to put our music genre down to one style because we draw from so many types of musical styles. So, for example, I’m very indie orientated, I love my indie bands from the noughties and tens, for example, Arctic Monkeys, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Circa Waves and so on. Sam our guitarist loves anything and everything, from Marvin Gaye to Taylor Swift to Haim to Dave and Stormzy and anything in between! Jack loves his pop punk, and we can certainly tell this whenever he plays a Paramore bass line! He also loves his indie as well, bands such as Colony House and Catfish really tickle his fancy. And finally, Pab loves rock Music, so Kings of Leon, Muse, Mona and not to mention a bit of psychedelic, so Tame Impala and Pond to name but a few. I think this is why we work together so well together, because we have so many ideas from different types of music that we can draw upon if we’re ever struggling writing a song.
How have things been for you over the lockdown/tier fiasco? What has been the most challenging?
Lockdown and COVID overall hasn’t been too difficult for us, while it has obviously had its downsides for the country and music industry on a whole, I might have to say we’ve benefited from it. We were playing in an older band, and had a few gigs booked in here and there for the upcoming 2020 year. But after giving it some thought, we decided to stop with that band and start again on a new page. Therefore, with the amount of spare time we had to our disposal, we could really sit down and plan everything out that we wanted. For example, what style we were going to have, the kind of branding and imaging we were going to have on our socials, when and what we were going to post on our socials with what caption and at what time. When we were going to record/release new music and what promo we were going to do for it etc. etc. But I think the most challenging part has been not being able to perform live. This is one of my favourite things to do and one of the main reasons as to why I started playing music with the lads, so yeah, I’d definitely say not being able to play live.
What are your feelings about the current situation and its impact on live music and venues?
So far, it’s been terrible. We as a band are quite fortunate in the fact that we have other jobs, that we’ve been able to survive on. However, other artists whose only income is by making music, whether it be streams, tours or whatever, there just hasn’t been enough in support for them. And the same goes for venues. Our favourite venue to play in, The Zanzibar, has closed due to not enough funding. This venue holds so much history and have had so many amazing bands play there, it’s such a shame to see such a vital part of the scouse music scene go down that easily.
Do you think there has been enough help for the industry throughout the crisis?
Not at all. To put it bluntly. The art and creative industry on a whole has suffered, people in film, tv, music, theatre who are mainly self-employed and don’t have a salary or contractual job, haven’t been able to thrive or even survive in the current climate.
2020 has been understandably riddled with a lot of negativity, what was some positives for you in 2020?
I think just the release and the start of the band has been a positive for us. We’ve had such good feedback from our single releases and it’s just fuelled us to get out there and start playing live! Another positive of 2020 is the amount of time we’ve had to prepare everything. So much time to write music, record demos, and we could be so frugal with it because we just had so much time at our disposal.
Tell me about your latest single ‘Madeline’ what is it about and where did you get your inspiration from?
Madeline has a simple concept of betrayal and jealousy at its heart that has been addressed in many classic love songs already and is only reaffirmed in this one, but in Honey Motels own “Scouse” way. A song that reminds the listener of what can go wrong in relationships & how they can end up. When conversations break down and turn into sour feelings quickly due to one of the partners in the relationship not keeping their promises/faith to the other person. The song addresses how things can turn spiteful when people are unfaithful, and how other people such as family members and friends can also be hurt by a breakup between two people as both camps have to pick sides between individuals. Although the song is a love song, we also want the listener to give it their own meaning, music is best when you give a song its own life in your mind.
What’s the best venue you’ve played so far and what’s would be your dream venue to play after Covid-19?
As mentioned before, our favourite venue to play was The Zanzibar. It had such a great atmosphere to play at regardless of if it was packed, or empty. (And we’ve played both!) Everybody who worked there was so friendly! Another great venue to play is the o2 Academy, we’ve only had the privilege to play when it’s been packed to the brim, so I guess that’s why we love to play there, because every time we have, we’ve had a great gig! I think as a band we’ve got to dream big. We’ve got music that can fill stadiums, I think we can gain arena amounts of fans, so why not aim there? It would have to be the Echo Arena.
Favourite festival you’ve played or want to play and why?
Well, the only festival we’ve played is Sound City, and that’s a hometown festival so I guess we’d have to go with that! But we want to play so many, I think it’s a great opportunity to get your music out there to the masses. Some great ones for us would be R+L, Boardmasters, 110 Above to name but a few.
What can we look forward to from you in 2021?
We’ve got so much in store for this year, (COVID Pending). We’ve got tour dates in the making, festivals we’re hoping to play, and we’ve got so many songs ready to be released to the masses. We’re all so excited for 2021 because I think this is going to be our year.