Bleech Box - Interview
Posted by Hunter on Tue, 10 Jul 2012.
Chandler Hastings, Lead guitarist, and lead vocalist
Luke Kendrick, vocalist and guitarist
Kurtis Orton-Tighe, Base
George Bignell, Drums
It has to be said that Jitty Editor Jasmin is excellent at finding standout local bands, and this time round she has brought to our attention, Bleech Box. From Lutterworth, with a singer by way of Ireland, we had a great chat with them before their show at Lock 42.
James: (to George) You have some awesome stretchers in. What size are they?
George: 28 now.
James: 28? Wow that is scary! Okay, so band name? How did you all meet up?
Chandler: Well we're called Bleech Box, I met Luke on an induction at our school last summer, and we just started talking about music and guitars. Then I moved over from Ireland and met again up over facebook and said that I was setting up and band and asked if he would like to do it. He was like yeah sure, I know this great drummer called George, and it just set up from there really. We used to have a female bass player but it didn't work out but we knew Kurtis had a base, so we asked him and he was like 'well erm ok' but didn't know how to play it, he just owns the thing, and knows where to put his hands on it, so we went away for a week and he basically taught himself the bass. So thats how we started out.
George: Yeah that's pretty much it. I just sit there and play.
James: So what were your influences and how did you start out with your instruments?
George: I've always wanted to play the drums, like as a little kid always hitting the pots and pans, as you do. So I started playing the drums when I was 10, and lessons when I was 11 with my drum teacher Matt Newnham, and been doing it since.
Kurtis: Well I started off with the guitar, when I was 14, and nothing really came from that as my guitar now sits in the corner of my room-
James: What Guitar is it?
Kurtis: I don't know some guitar from ASDA that was £60, laughing So from then on I started getting into Slipknot, and I thought Joey Jordison looked pretty cool on the drums. So I bought a drum kit, third hand which also sits in my room, it doesn't get used. Then I finally ended up with getting a bass, because Paul Gray from Slipknot , once again I thought looked pretty cool with the bass, among many others so I got into bass. Didn't really play it much, but then one day Luke asked if I wanted to be in a band with him asking if I still have that bass and here we are today.
Luke: My dad used to play guitar and he started teaching me it years and years ago but I never really took that much interest, but then I started to listen to Blink 182, and I sort of wanted to be more like Tom DeLonge, so I took it more seriously. I've been in some bands before with George, and then I met Chandler and started this one.
James: Yeah I noticed you customised your guitar too.
Luke: Yeah I did it myself with the scratch paint.
Chandler: Well, I never had an older brother so I used to look up to my cousin and I was never the popular one at school, but he was. He had all the girls after him and I was like 'Well what can I do?', so I grew my hair long, dyed it black, just like him. I wore all the same clothes. He even gave me his hand-me-downs so I could look like that. But it still wasn't working! Then I found out he played the guitar so I was like 'That's the key! That's the key to being cool!' So I went to my Dad, wanting to learn the guitar but he said 'you already play the piano accordion' so I had to look up about guitars and then went to ASDA and he bought me a squire acoustic. So I went to night classes and got taught by a guy called Ray. I don't remember his last name just that his hair was thinning a bit. So I started a few bands over there in Ireland, like Black Mould, and then I came over here and started Bleech Box.
Jasmin: Yeah, you were originally called Falsehood, so what made you change it?
Chandler: Well actually we were originally called Holiday Warehouse. We found it on the place that sold Holiday packages and I was like 'Yeah that's a catchy name', but Luke hated it with a passion. But when we kicked out our old bass player, Kurtis didn't like the name either, so he looked in the dictionary and found 'Falsehood'. But we had that till April, and then we found an American band called Falsehood, and this was at the time One Direction was going to get sued for having the same name or something, so we had to think up of another one. George really liked the name Bleach and he kept going on about the name Bleach, but we couldn't just have Bleach. Nirvana had an Album called Bleach and so many others using that name. Then he said what about 'Bleech box'. We were like 'that's pretty cool' but Kurtis hated it at first but then he texted me saying he actually really liked it, but the text was sent with the spelling 'bleech' so we kept to that spelling.
Jasmin: Well, you've just released your new EP Cola Cube, so yeah, influences with songs?
Chandler: I forgot about our EP (laughing). Yeah so it was released on the 4th of June. When we got together we were saying how we could play at Reading and Leeds next year, we were going to be huge! But Luke pointed out we hadn't got an album, so we talked about album names and Luke said he always liked the name Cola Cube-
Luke: - I was eating them a lot at the time-
Chandler: - Yeah I never heard of Cola Cubes before. My mum bought me a packet and it is still sitting in my room, but I don't want to open it because it is like my memorial packet. So we thought about releasing an EP called Cola Cube. Luke started writing some tracks and I had some tracks from my old band that I recently rewrote for this band. We were going to do it as a 13 track album, but we recorded four of them, and we thought, we can't be bothered to record anymore, so we thought we'll just put the four on and sell it as an EP. We currently sell it within our school.
Jasmin: So where do you go to school then?
Chandler: We all go to Lutterworth College.
James: So who's the singer?
Chandler: Both Luke and I are the singers.
Luke: Yeah, it depends on who writes the songs really and who prefers the song.
Chandler: Well, I've written a couple of songs that I would like Luke to sing. Because he's younger, his voice is naturally higher than mine, so even when we're singing together we naturally harmonise because his is a higher pitch and my voice is an octave lower, so it kind of works out really well.
James: I've not heard you sing yet, but do you put on one of those fake American accents when speaking into the mic?
Chandler: Well yes, I do. Because after all those years, of speaking into a mirror singing into my hair brush with an American accent, pretending to be Billie Joe Armstrong and Tom DeLonge, I've adopted and American accent when talking into a microphone and it annoys everyone else off. Luke tells me off all the time for it! But I hate my own voice coming from the speakers. It's so loud and squeaky.
James: You should try to utilise your Irish twang.
Chandler: Yeah, I've been trying to do it. I have been asked to say things like 'potato' and it's basically become my catch phrase because of the way I say it. Apparently I sound like Keith Lemon whom I've never heard of before. But I'm trying to use my normal voice so I'm not singing in the mirror anymore. But yeah, I keep putting on an Oakland accent because that's where Billie Joe is from.
James: So you have your idols, but who would you like to tour with?
Chandler: There's a band from America that we would love to tour with. They're an all girl rock band that are exactly the same ages as us, called Cherry Bomb. But they've already played in reading and Leeds.
James: Did you get in touch with them?
Chandler: I used to speak to the drummer through youtube. Basically I stalked her or a while till she replied. That's my aim, I like talking to famous people because it makes me feel famous! I'm now at the hinting stage of 'oh wouldn't it be so cool if we tour with you guys'. Then she doesn't reply and I'm like 'Damn. I'll try again tomorrow'. But that's who we want to tour the most at the moment.
Luke: yeah it would be cool to tour with Blink-182 as well.
Chandler: It would be cool if they supported us one day... (Laughing) But yeah we're just trying to get out there, book as many gigs as possible. We're going to the new festival up near Mansfield called Deathbox.
Jasmin: Sounds good, so quickly, any musical bad habits?
Chandler: George does that thing with his mouth!
George: Yeah, I end up doing a weird thing with my mouth where I bite my top lip or suck both my lips in when drumming.
Kurtis: I can't think of any musical bad habits, you guys notice anything?
Luke: Yeah, you can't play. (Laughing).
Chandler: Oh Luke has this really annoying chord that he plays over and over again. He keeps trying to put it into a song. It's the most annoying thing.
Luke: But Chandler has his guitar too low.
Chandler: Oh yeah, I wear my guitar too low. I put my guitar at arm's length and then I think 'this isn't low enough', so I put it lower and lower till its banging off my knees. Then I think 'No this is too low', so I bring up back to normal and then it gets lower and lower again. It's just gets up and down constantly.
Luke: You always get problems with your knees though.
Chandler: Yeah I've dislocated my knee loads of times. I'm always the one that gets hurt.
George: But I'm the one that always gets a bottle thrown at me.
Jasmin: The EP, Tells us about the songs.
Chandler: Oh yeah the EP! Luke wrote most of them actually.
Luke: The instrumental was sort of me twiddling around on my guitar and I got something cool out of it so I recorded it and sent it to Chandler. Chandler liked it and then after a while it's sort of evolved and we made that flow into the next song called 'We like to Sin' which is about going to parties and that.
Chandler: What parties have we actually gone to?
Luke: I don't remember (laughing). Then Chandler wrote the next song.
Chandler: So I wrote 'Who Cares'. In my old band in Ireland we had to write a song, so I sat in religion class when I wrote it and it is probably the worst song that has ever been written! But we uploaded it up to Youtube, but don't search it because it's awful! The amount of hate it got was awful so I decided to rewrite it. So I played around with D chords and it turned out to be a really catchy song that I really enjoy playing, it's a bit of a pop-punky one that you can dance to. Its just about all the stuff that's going on, and I really hate Politicians so I wrote a song about it and about wasted talent. Then Luke wrote the next one; out most popular one.
Luke: Yeah, it's called 'Keep Calm and Carry On'. I actually wrote it when I was 12 years old, but I've changed the guitar a bit and the words pretty much stayed the same. It's about teenage life really. But it's turned out to be a bit of favourite.
Chandler: Its one of those songs that has chanting 'Na Na Na's in it and I've been told by someone on twitter that it has to be one of the most annoying songs they've ever heard because they can't stop chanting to it!
Bleech Box's EP is available to order and get from the band, and their website is here: http://www.facebook.com/bleechboxband
Interview by Jim and Jasmin