Interviews: SMILE MORE

On this new occasion, we have had the opportunity to interview the Alternative Metal band, SMILE MORE, from the UK. Check out the interview and follow the band on their FACEBOOK PAGE.

1. Where did you get the idea for the band name, you planned it or did it just come out like that?

The band name came from the divine mind of our first drummer, he had this almost anarchic view of the world, we were playing around with a variety of names; I think TOKYO PSYCHO was the first but nothing ever seemed to fit. Then one day in conversation our drummer said something to the effect of: 'In such a sad, Orwellian world smiling really is the best act of resistance, you know we should all SMILE MORE' and it just struck a chord with us, maybe because our music always had a mental health focus.

2. Why did you want to play this genre?

Interestingly enough I don't think we've ever 'wanted' to play in any sort of genre. Our music evolved from a range of influences, all somewhat centered in the metal space. Ollie and Chris have always had an interest in theatre, so when the band formed, representing that through music was the goal. When it came to releasing our first tracks we toiled over whether we were Progressive Metal or Heavy Metal and in the end, the only box that fit was Alt Metal.

3. Did you know each other before the band was formed?

In our current format, I think we've all known each other since university. Ollie created the path for us all to orbit and we all just have been locked ever since. We've always had a bond even since early on.

4. Each band member's favorite band?

Ollie: SKYND

Chris: Svalbard

Johnny: Devin Townsend

Dale: Primus

5. Who or what inspires you to write songs?

Ollie and Johnny are the main lyrical, narrative forces in the band, but really the output is a group effort. Initially, the band was about creating music for the sake of creating, attempting to take the plays of Sarah Kane and place their intentions at the core of our work. It was very clear early on that the goal was to take difficult psychological battles and package them up in an accessible package. The songs are pulled from a variety of lived experiences that we want to share and others are more conceptual in nature. But each of our songs looks at the mind, the soul, and what it is to exist in the fringes of the human mind.

6. Where was your last gig?

Our last gig was at the Electric Banana in Weston Super mare, a cracking local venue. If anyone finds themselves in the South-West check them out!

7. Where would you like to play?

I think we're all in agreement, we'd love to play Bloodstock.

8. Who would you like to support?

We often fantasize about opening for Avatar; we just think the night would be wild!

9. Who not?

Honestly, as the years go on this list changes. For us, we feel that opening for the likes of Marilyn Manson; potentially his music swims in the same circles as ours, is a no-go. For these artists in high-up positions that don't act in good faith, I feel we'd rather turn down the offer.

10. Any of you ever suffered from stage fright? Any tips for beginners on how to beat that?

Ollie: I can only speak for myself, I used to suffer from a lot of stage fright in my youth. I think for me it was a combination of exposure and honing my craft musically that slowly allowed me to walk tall and proud on stage. I spend a lot of time grounding myself emotionally before shows and within the band, I often step into the shoes of a character when on stage. It helps me separate my ego and fear, helping me show up authentically in the moment.

11. What bands have inspired you the most?

So many, but to give you a quick three. Avatar, Tool, and System of A Down. All for their larger-than-life performance, their interesting music, and the authenticity of their writing.

12. What's the weirdest thing a fan has ever asked you for?

A fan once asked Dale for his sweaty t-shirt.

13. What do you think of your fans?

This is said so often but I want to emphasize we really mean this: They make all of this worth it. Sure, we create for our own self-expression, but seeing how our shows become unique moments in other people's lives is so special. Hearing stories about people being inspired or moved by the music we create always moves us.

14. What do you think of our site?

It's sleek and vibey, you clearly do a lot of promotion for the genres you cover and it's really great to see.

15. Something to add?

We are really appreciative to BREATHING THE CORE for taking the time to talk to us, Thank You For Having Me marks a change of chapter in the SMILE MORE book and we hope you all enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it. Thank you so much for having us! Keep in touch at -

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