THE chaps of Wulfman Fury…
tell me about their new track, Nightsweats - and what comes next for them. The five-piece hail from Sheffield. I learn more about the city’s scene and why the Yorkshire hotspot deserves more attention and acclaim. The guys tell me about their favourite music and what it is like being affiliated with Mile Kane – band member George used to perform alongside him. The boys talk about touring and why it is a natural home for them; what dates they have coming up – and a few new artists worth investigating.
I find out about their inner-workings and creative process; what they have planned for the coming year – and how a song like Nightsweats is pitched/created.
Hi, guys. How are you? How has your week been?
Good, thanks - apart from our drummer, Dave, has tonsillitis. We have had a busy month launching the band; releasing the video and single; doing two secret warm-up shows and our first official show in Sheffield.
So; this week is a chilled one. Just doing some laid-back writing sessions.
For those new to your work; can you introduce yourself, please?
We are Wulfman Fury. A five-piece Garage-Rock band from Sheffield - who announced ourselves to the world at the beginning of October (2017).
Nightsweats is your new track. What is the background to this one?
It’s not just our ‘new track’: it’s the first we have put out. It’s about sleep paralysis. Myself (George) has had it about six times. The first few were extremely scary and trippy. It’s where your brain wakes up but your body’s asleep. You’re aware but your body is trapped and you’re unable to move. Often; it involves a person or creature pinning you down.
It’s incredibly surreal and isn't like a dream - it feels very real!
How did a song like Nightsweats come together? Do you all pitch lines or will someone come in with the bones – the band then flesh it out?
The idea was brought into the rehearsal room by George with the chords, riff and melody - and we probably had the main bones done in about twenty minutes. George then went away and finished the lyrics. Within two weeks, we were in George’s ‘Fox Den Studios’ and finished it in under two days.
All self-produced and mixed.
It is an intense opening statement! Will there be more from Wulfman Fury?
Yes! We have twenty-two recorded tracks and we’re currently working on four new songs. It would be silly to just put it all out there straight away; so, we’re releasing a second track and video called Draw the Line at the end of next month - and a third track and video, Waterslide, at the end of December (via AWAL).
Then...an E.P. with some bonus tracks on it in January.
George. You used to play with Miles Kane but have stepped into this new venture. What was the reason for assembling the band and do you still keep in touch with Miles?!
The last ten years of me moving to Sheffield; getting into bands and producing; touring with Miles and building my own studio has all built up to this moment: to get my own band together. I’ve got an amazing set of guys around me now - and a real asset of having my own studio.
Yes, we’re still in touch but he’s over in L.A. I sent him the video for the first track the other day and he seemed to dig it.
How did you all get together and do you all share a love of the same artists, in general?
Myself and Dave, the drummer, have worked together on a few previous bands. We started the project and then started bringing in other people as the ideas progressed. Will on keys works for me in my recording studio. He’s a great all-round musician. Joe - lead guitar - is my younger brother. He can hit the harmonies and Steve is the dark horse of the band.
An amazing bass player and songwriter.
Sheffield is your base. It does not get a lot of attention in the press but is responsible for the likes of Arctic Monkeys. Do you think the press should feature more Sheffield acts?!
Sheffield is an amazing city...
I have a real love for the place and the people. It’s not just Sheffield, is it?! Like a lot of industries in this country. it’s too over-focused in the South - mainly London. It’s not surprising when you look into the backgrounds and upbringing of a lot of big artists these days: London, privately-educated; parents (are) multimillionaires. Mumford & Sons, Florence and The Machine; The Vaccines, Sam Smith... the list goes on...
The problem is; their privately-educated friends from school get the opportunity to do the free internships at labels and in the press. Those internships are out of reach for the working-class in the North. Who do these people go to look at when they’re scouting for bands and looking for new bands to write about?! Yes; their mate's new band from private school... sorry; bit of a rant there...
I think people from the press should get their arses out of London more. But at the same time, as a new artist, you shouldn't worry about the divide. Write good tunes and get them out there - and start building fans in your local city.
What is the local scene like? Is it still as productive and epic as it was in the 1990s, would you say?
I think the local scene has really grown in the last few years.
There seems to finally be a buzz back again for new bands. There are some great smaller venues like Cafe Totem. I think, finally, bands are removing themselves from the ‘Monkeys sound’. There are some great Punk bands around here. My favourite new Sheffield band are called The Seamonsters: a six-piece all-girl band. I see real long-term potential with those.
What tour dates do you have coming up? Where can we catch you play?
We’re just focusing on Sheffield for now.
We have our first headline show 25th November at The Washington - and a big end-of-the-year blow-out show 16th December at Yellow Arch. Few shows already booked for next year - but keeping them under wraps for now.
It seems like the road is the natural hunting-ground for Wulfman Fury! Is that arena where you all feel the most alive and true?
I like your wordplay, there!
You can write, record and rehearse all you want - but playing your own songs live is what it’s all about, really.
If you had to list the dreams and goals for the band next year; what would they be, would you say?
Our main focus, for now, is to win over Sheffield.
Keep building and selling out the gigs and putting out good tracks - and just enjoy being creative together.
Can you all select the one album that means the most to you? Which would they be and why?
George: Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s self-titled (first) album
I had been listening to this album for over a year and read an interview with the singer and producer, Ruban Nielson. In it, he revealed that it was all recorded in his bedroom with one SM58 microphone - which gave me the inspiration and confidence to record and produce our tracks; instead of taking them into a big fancy studio.
Dave: Rubber Soul - The Beatles
I think it’s their finest hour as a band
Will: The Great Indoors by Brendan Croker
It was the first album to make me think about writing a song.
Joe: Fun House by The Stooges
An album with incredible energy - and some huge tunes on it.
Steve: Grace by Jeff Buckley
Because, I swear that album was given to us from God. It's the perfect mix of occasionally aggressive guitars and soulful vocals.
What advice would you give to artists coming through right now?
Have a good name and concentrate on writing: it’s, by far, the most important part. Don’t overplay your hometown: some bands I see are doing three gigs in the same week in Sheffield - people are going to switch off.
Christmas is not too far away. Do you all have plans already or will you be busy working?
We’re family boys. We will disperse back to the 'rents and be sat by the fire eating and drinking - as you should be.
Finally, and for being good sports; you can each name a song and I’ll play it here (not one of yours as I’ll do that).
George: The Budos Band - Chicago Falcon
Dave: Prince - I Wanna Be Your Lover
Will: Broken Social Scene - 7/4 (Shoreline)
Joe: Pixies - Bone Machine
Steve: I Don't Know Anything by Jamie Lenman
(His new album is killer)
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