Interview: Creeper [March 2015]

By Ben Tipple

Having released our favourite EP of 2014, Creeper have been drawing a whole host of attention since the middle of last year. Hitting the road with Moose Blood and preparing for an extensive touring schedule, we sat down with vocalist Will Gould and guitarist Ian Miles in the University of Southampton’s Activity Room, ahead of their set at Takedown Festival, to discuss their rise, image and the DIY punk scene.

How are you guys doing?

Ian: We’re doing great. Really good.

Will: We’re in the middle of tour. We are up earlier than we would normally be, but it’s nice.

Ian: It’s nice to have a break from the regular show. The festival atmosphere is good.

Because you’re on the road with Moose Blood at the moment…

Will: It’s been real good. It’s been a really good tour for us. We love Moose Blood anyway, but the audience have been really receptive to what we do as well as what Moose Blood do. It’s been really good to have our kids there too. There’s more of a Moose Blood vibe than there is for us, but there’s certainly a good crossover. Our crowds mix really well. We’re both punk bands from the same sort of scene, so it’s nice to be on the road with a band who get what we do.

You have been on the road relentlessly recently.

Will: The last two months we’ve been really busy. This year is going to be really hectic for us. We’re away a lot.

Ian: As it is for any band’s first year.

Will: Yeah, this is our first year as a band. We’re very keen to be hardworking. A lot of people blew smoke up our arse when we first started, so we’re very keen to make good on that and to justify our attention.

There was a lot of talk about you early on. Did that put a lot of pressure on you?

Will: For us, we are only really focussed on the here and now. A lot of the people you speak to today, whether they mention it or not, will have a blueprint for how they are going to get big.

Ian: Some sort of agenda.

Will: The difference between those bands and our band is that we are very focussed on our record and performance. As cheesy as it is, we are focussed on the whole art side of it. I was an art student.

Ian: The creative process.

Will: We are very much focussed on what we are doing. Everything else that has come along the side of it has been incredible, and we love it. But the pressure to meet any expectations isn’t a big as the pressure for us to do ourselves justice, and to do our record justice. To be the best band we can be.

The image seems to be a big part of that creative process. Was that always part of the plan?

Ian: That was almost like a bi-product. The way we focus on the creativity more than other aspects. That just comes through.

Will: If you knew us personally, the shit I’m wearing right now is my every day. It isn’t a gimmick. I think the band kind of reflects that. It’s very natural. We do still see the whole thing as a package for sure. We spend a lot of time thinking about aesthetic. I think it’s something that is missed out on now. With the 90s revival, and previously the hardcore scene… it was all no frills, straight-up hardcore. I grew up listening to The Damned, The Misfits – those sorts of bands really appeal to us. The difference is that we are not very attractive men, we’ve come to terms with that after 27 years. We do it because that’s how we feel comfortable. It’s out performance. It’s much more a natural thing than anything else.

More a reflection of your interests?

Ian: Totally.

Will: It’s all woven into the fabric of our band. Our merch box is made out of wood and carved with pentagrams, and people are always like, “shit, you live this”. We assume people think that anyway, but to an outsider it might look like something we put on. It’s 24/7 for us though. It’s ingrained in our band.

What’s next for Creeper? Is there an album in the works?

Will: There’s an EP on the way.

Do you get time on the road?

Ian: It’s very difficult.

Will: We’re insanely busy over the summer. With everything that’s going on, out of nowhere – it’s all happened a lot faster than we ever though it would happen.

Why do you think that’s happened?

Will: It’s difficult to take it apart now. In hindsight, we might be doing something now that hasn’t been done in a while. The recent darker punk bands have been a bit tacky. There hasn’t been much since Danzig, AFI or the first My Chemical Romance album that’s been to our taste. We haven’t got a Halloween rhyming dictionary out. We have a very particular message and agenda. Maybe it has caught people’s imagination. There are kids that were brought up on AFI – they were one of those bands you couldn’t not take seriously. We have grown up with those influences. Perhaps we are in a small part a resurgence of that.

Ian: I think it’s come back around, like the grunge thing has come back around. If we can inspire other people to do something, that would be great.

Will: That’s our whole vibe. When I was a kid I used to go the see the most incredible band I had ever seen, they were local. So we started hardcore bands and punk bands – we’ve been involved in hardcore punk for the longest time. Hopefully we can inspire someone to be creative in different ways.

Ian: And then the cycle will just continue.

Will: The best thing about this, and all the people that want to speak to us, is that having a band that is just focussed on being creative rather than monopolise a market or target a specific demographic is more important. Gnarwolves are doing it really well. We love Gnarwolves. They are an inspiration to us – they did a two page Kerrang feature where they just spoke about DIY bands. We think it’s great that bands can do that now.

Thank you very much guys.

Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]