|Photo by Me - Taken after interview|
I caught up with Ollie (singer/programmer) and Andy (guitarist/backing vocals) of electronic metal band, Collisions who hail from Brighton UK, at the return of Brighton's dedicated Metal festival, MammothFest 2014. So they discuss Mammothfest and it's importance to Brighton, along with another new Brighton Festival, Breakout Festival, which they are due to play on the 27th September 2014 and their upcoming new album which is due for release at the end of this year..
Ok we are here today at MammothFest, So hailing from Brighton, how important do you think the rebirth of MammothFest is for the Brighton and South East music scene, especially as your from Brighton?
Ollie: I think it's really great for the scene, there hasn't been an incredible amount on I personally feel, really sort of going on for rock/metal really recently, so it's really nice to see something actually happening and taking place. Well behind Steve and Mammothfest!
Andy: Yeah, this isn't the first time like a metal festival has tried to take off in Brighton, the first try was a couple of years ago and that was amazing, but it's taken this long to get back like what was initially was hours spent and it's nice to see that it has been a success story, and now it's going full throttle today.
Did you actually go to the Mammothfest back in 2010?
Andy: Yes yes, it was absolutely amazing, I was DJing there, first time I have like a Town hall, it was absolutely huge, it was great.
How excited are you to perform later at Mammothfest?
Ollie: Very much so, I think it's going to be..I have literally just got here so I'm looking forward to it and getting in there and checking out some bands, it is a great line-up and it's definitely going to be good fun, most definitely.
What other bands are you looking forward to seeing over the weekend? Are you going tomorrow aswell? (have you managed to catch any of the first bands playing earlier?)
Ollie: We will be loitering..
Andy: Yeah I came down a little earlier to see Headface, like a really kind of dirty kind of metal, very angry guys which was cool, Porshyne just playing now, looking forward to Martyr Defiled tomorrow as well as No Sin Evades His Gaze, they are probably going to tear a hole in the stage, should be sweet and Core Of iO..I could go on..
Ollie: The line-up is great, so many local bands as well as really good.
Andy: It seems to be like a really good vibe going for Brighton bands at the moment, just recently, there was like four Brighton bands on on the Metal Hammer cover CD and now we have got our own festival going on and a large percentage of that is like Brighton home grown kind of grass roots talents.
Hopefully it will be the start of something really big..
Andy: I mean Brighton has always been like, everywhere we have played live the general consensus is for Brighton is just like a melting pot for music, everyone's just so envious like 'Oh yeah, you're a metal band from Brighton, it must be amazing over there', it's just like a double edged sword because there's so many bands here, even though you have got that melting pot of like different styles and people coming together and making something beautiful, there is so much down here, sometimes it is saturated for the person who just wants to listen to it, it's half the challenge though (laughs).
You definitely stand out which brings me on to my next question actually. You have an interesting and distinct sound, incorporating dubstep and metal and other elements, what would you say was the main inspiration behind your sound and how did it come about?
Ollie: I think it was always an initially a desire to do something a little bit different, a little bit not of the norm and in order to stand out I think it's quite important that bands stand out for one specific reason or another, and it basically bore? out of some of my interest in electronic sounds and learning to appreciate electronic music, even though I was like a deeply devout metal head, so my sort of coming to grips with all of that is very much presented I think to an extent, but we listen to loads of Slipknot where you hear sort of drum and bass and samples and stuff and Sid the DJ stuff underneath, and that's originally where it started for me, and going into it there's lots of aggressive sounds shared by both styles of music and I think sticking them together is great.
Andy: It was quite funny actually how it all kind of kicked off because I myself, how it first went was like, Ollie was working in the nightclub where I was DJing and we just hit it off like a house on fire and started talking about bands we were into, and initially Collisions was his idea. I had some dealings with some ideas kicking around before anyway, like I was playing around with two drummers for a band called Ultraviolet trying to make a project called Hate Panda, which is quite hilarious, like a drum and bass thing and then he was like programming and sythns and everything like that, so I thought it would be amazing..and the rest they say is history.
Since forming in 2011 you have had a lot of success and received positive press, from the likes of Kerrang, and more and had comparisons made such as you sound like “Skindred meets Pendulum”, how does it feel to get such a great response? And what do you think of the comparisons?
Andy: In response to “Skindred meets Pendulum” comparison he adds "In a bar fight"! *laughs*
Ollie: I mean to have such great bands that we are personally massive fans of is quite an honour for us.
I like the “Prodigy meets Arctic Monkeys”!..
Ollie: That is a bizarre one, interesting one nonetheless. We will still take it though, I will still have that!
Andy: This is what we try and do, try and bring the furthest genre together and smash them together, it's fun to see what we can get out. We we're still trying to fit in some banjos! *laughs*
Ollie: Stick a banjo in it!
Following one nicely from that, Skindred have just picked you to play as their headliners choice at another new festival in Brighton, Break Out Festival, that must be an amazing feeling?! How excited are you for this?
Ollie: It completely blew our heads off!
Andy: The night it came through like on the email. I contacted Ollie and was like "OH MY GOD!” like a proper fan boy, like you're never know..
Ollie: That's truly an honor, it really is, and we are properly stoked for that, that's an understatement to say the least!
Andy: It’s nice to have like a head nod from a major act like that, it kind of like puts us in the right direction, feels like we are going in the right direction, getting feedback like that is fantastic.
Again that's another new festival starting out in Brighton so it will be a good to be part of the first one, so it's cool to be part of that anyway..
Ollie: Hopefully to try and reestablish what's sort of been lacking in the scene in the last couple of years, hopefully like MammothFest and things like this is the start of a change in that, most definitely and we hope we can do everything we can to help in any capacity really.
What would you say have been some main highlights for you so far?
Andy: Will in his Onesie? In America, not in America, Europe sorry..
Ollie: We've had had some phenomenal support slots over the last year or so and that's been great fun, getting some shows out in London with a couple of our mates bands, you know with the Algorithm. We are doing some shows and things with Seething Akira bands like that, who we have grown really close with. I think those are the highlights really, just getting out and playing, making some really good friends like RSJ ,and cypher16 guys as well, that's definitely a highlight on the year so far.
Andy: All the amazing people we met on way, through the journey is so good.
I understand you are currently working on your new release, the follow up to 'Push' which is to be released early next year, how is the writing and recording process going so far?
Ollie: Well it's pretty much nearly done, our first go and sort of really a debut album sort of thing with like a full track listing. The albums before we did like our five track EP and singles and things like that, so this is our real first go at a debut album. We are quite precious so to say the very least, but it is finished now, it's in its final throws of being done and we will start making some noise about that before the end of the year actually.
Andy: We are really excited about the music that's on there.
Ollie: We have really, we are really trying to push whatever kind of boundaries we really can in what we are doing on that album, there's lots of different stuff that's sort of us.
Andy: Just different takes and view points and stuff. It's going to be quite an interesting to see how people actually relate to it and stuff. We are totally stoked about it, can't wait to get it out.
Ollie: Some of the songs of it we're already playing and there getting some great reactions.
Would you say it differs to your previous material?
Ollie: In places yeah, I mean it's sort of trying other elements like that I wasn't too keen on, that we might not have been keen on in the past, opening out and really branching out into this fusion of electronics and metal where it can really take us.
Will we be lucky enough to hear any new material today at Mammoth Fest?
Ollie: We got a couple of new songs in the pipeline, one or two off the album thrown in there...just sneaky, we don't say a lot about can't it just suggest getting people's reactions, but yeah there's definitely some new stuff in the set.
What other plans have you got for the rest of the year?
Ollie: Finishing off the album is the main plan for the year and then making preparations for releasing and a tour next year, which is the main focus. Still keeping up a pretty good rotation of shows throughout the end of the year, we certainly like to spread out across the UK more.
Andy: Collisions are definitely addicted to live, that’s where I think we do flourish. We just love..for me personally that’s a place where a band should be; if you can’t handle it live, there’s no point in actually putting anything out..so as many shows as we do really.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Ollie: Yeah, we basically if you want to find out what’s going on about us, you can check us out either on the website, which is collisionsband.com or type in collisionsuk and you’ll find something from us.
Andy: All one word, if you separate you might get something completely different. Yeah there’s loads of videos, reviews and stuff, and a bit of talking blogs and stuff, so yeah come say “Hi”, as essentially that’s what we really want to do, we want to connect with people..come find us.