When you’re doing something right, you don’t want a let-up. You don’t expect a let-up. No lightening of load, no drop in intensity.
You feed off the adrenaline of momentum. Piggyback it as much as you. Enjoy it for what it is and drive forward. Gig hard. Kick on.
The summer just gone been an absolute smash for SHEAFS. Festivals up and down the country, audiences peaking close to 2000 people. Reactions still feel slightly surreal but not undeserved. Nor should they be unexpected. Award wins prove this. More gigs, bigger crowds, new cities prove this.
With new single, This Is Not A Protest, on its way towards the backend of November, they don’t expect a let-up, nor do they want one. There won’t be one.
It’s all onwards for SHEAFS, starting tonight in York on the This Feeling: Alive tour; but not before we tapped into their minds talking the buzz of the unknown, making videos and vintage football shirts!
Mad summer, a real royal banquet spread of festivals, a whirlwind of things to come; could you pick a highlight from the summer?
I think we can all collectively say that our highlight has to be Y Not Festival. Most of us first went to that festival when we were 16/17, so to get the opportunity to play there was massive for us.
And it couldn’t have gone much better for us really; after playing the Allotment Stage for This Feeling we got asked to play the Quarry Stage. So we ended up playing to 2,000 people just before the likes of Lethal Bizzle, Example and Idris Elba. Very surreal moment.
The guys at This Feeling have done a top job galvanising the up and coming, a marvellous platform to kick on. How important is being able to see a route forward? Essentially the equivalent of breaking into the first team.
This Feeling are absolutely class, they’ve given us so many opportunities to play festivals and cities we’ve never been to before. This allows you to get your name out there and play to people that won’t necessarily have heard of you. It’s important to just keep pushing on and work as hard as you can.
We’ve seen them say that it’s surely inevitable that you reach those dizzying heights. Naturally, I’m sure, that’s a real proud moment for all of you, but job not over. Do you feel any extra pressure now or is it just a case of doing your thing? Hitting the end goal.
We’re all very focused on the band and are motivated to keep pushing on. If anything, hearing comments like that just makes you want to push on even more and achieve as much as you can. We want to keep gigging as much as possible and keep writing new songs.
You’ve not long since released your video, the Gallagher brothers infamously hate doing videos. How was it for you?
Mind pollution was quite a fun one to film, Sam Crowston is the man with the camera. We basically filmed it all in a few hours, with a few scenes of people running around Sheffield and then a couple of hours in a basement. But, yeah, we always enjoy making videos, just coming up with the ideas is the hard part.
Any decent outtakes?
Not as we are aware of, could be some terrible ones knocking around somewhere!
One of my favourite images of the summer was of you guys post-gig at Y Not? I spotted a vintage Newcastle away football shirt in there – what’s the best ever though? One of the madcap German or Dutch shirts from the 80s/90s?
A few of us are big football fan. Charles has got a couple of old Newcastle Shirts as you saw at Y Not? and Chris has a yellow retro Forest one. Not sure what we’d say the best one is though. The proper old school ones with the lace up collars are pretty cool, or just ones with weird patterns on.
You won the Virgin Radio FreshFest and subsequent airplay all over the shop followed, I’m pretty sure we all know how you were feeling; but how did you celebrate?
Yeah, that was a class moment for us. We never really thought we’d make the final 5, but when we did we worked our arses off to get people behind us and had the likes of Newcastle United, Henderson’s Relish and Drop Dead Clothing back us.
It was a morning thing, so we essentially just celebrated with a smoothie that some guy on a bike made us.
This Feeling Alive Tour. Buzzing for it?
Yeah, the alive tours got some class bands on. Looking forward to being a part of it.
Is playing York as opposed to Sheffield all part of the breaking of the mould, the safety blanket that is Sheffield?
We’ve never played York before, but in the past when we’ve been to cities we’ve never played before and had a good laugh. Some of our best gigs have been in other cities. Southampton, Bristol and Liverpool were probably some of our highlights on the road. Can’t beat a Sheffield gig though.
Looking at Cabbage’s upcoming dates on The Healing Brexit Towns Experiment Tour, playing new places is imperative for new audiences, new experiences. Any burning desires to get to anywhere slightly off the beaten track?
As answered in the previous questions, playing new cities is one thing we all buzz off. After the last tour we made debuts in Liverpool, Brighton, Cardiff and Bristol. I’d say probably a venture up north is next on the agenda, a Newcastle gig would be class and it would be great to branch out into Scotland; and then into Europe…
We saw Nathan from Vultures stepping to your musical-aid during Y Not? Festival, camaraderie over competition really feels like one of the main drivers coming from This Feeling. You feeling it?
Nathan’s a legend and so are the rest of the Vultures lads. Nathan, Danny Bower, Aaron Procter and a few others were a massive help when we played the Quarry Stage at Y Not Festival. It’s good to support other bands, it’s never really a competition. The festivals this year have allowed us to make mates with lots of bands such as The Assist, Himalayas, Strange Bones, The Americas and a load more.
As a writer, I personally think gigs are pretty experiential. Not everyone gets the same experience, too many uncontrollable variables. With that in mind, how important is the crowd-interaction, creating a frenetic experience for all, that we’re starting to see come back through? It seemed to tail off for a while.
It’s massive. We always say that if the crowd aren’t moving were doing something wrong. I think it’s important that the crowd see it as a performance and what to be part of it and get involved.
So, what have we got to look out for; new releases, a little bit of a headline tour yeah?
Our next single ‘This Is Not A Protest is due for release on 24th November. It’s had a good reception at the festivals and recent gigs, so we’re looking forward to that coming out. Then we’ve got a few city festivals and gigs lined up, playing with Cabbage, Trampolene and Sisteray at Leadmill next month for yourselves which will be class.
Other than that, we will continue to keep write and trying to push on.
Boys, it’s been a pleasure. Take care!
TICKETS FOR ALIVE TOUR: www.thisfeeling.co.uk
TICKETS FOR THE LEADMILL: https://www.seetickets.com/tour/northern-exposure-presents-mah