Shadows Chasing Ghosts

By paul

Paul spoke to SCG vocalist Trey about the band’s new album…

For those who may not have heard of the band, can you please give us a little history lesson about how you formed and how you got to the present day.  is there any meaning behind the band name?

A few of us were jamming together in other groups at the time. Danny, Danny and Matt all went to school together and the rest of us met up through the local music scene and decided we were going to try some ideas together. We went through a line up change and directional change too – which is how we arrived at the way we stand today. The band name came about at a practice session after about 5 weeks worth of a lot of suggestions and no one agreeing. We were actually sat around for about 3 hours one day talking about horror movies with silly titles, joking about with daft names. But then someone threw these three words together and we ended up with Shadows Chasing Ghosts. Why not?

How would you sum up your sound in just one sentence?

We sound like a bunch of angry, loud young men playing heavy shit that they enjoy, that is influenced by all of the bands they love.

Which bands would you say are influences on you both lyrically and musically?

I’ve always been influenced by artists whose words mean something and that you make a connection with, for example Anthony Green (Circa Survive) or Brien Worsham (Secret Lives of the Freemasons).
Weather or not you know the true meaning of what the artist is trying to say, to make a connection is a big thing to me when listening to music. I wanted people to find that with the lyrics I was writing and for the music to actually mean something to them as well.

Your new album sounds huge…it has a really powerful, well rounded sound.  Who did you record it with?  What lessons did you learn in the studio that helped to shape the album?
Thanks! We’re really pleased with how it turned out. We actually recorded the album with two of our best friends – John and Ben at Outhouse in Reading. Both of them were fully on our case the whole way through, making sure we really pushed ourselves and basically didn’t fuck it up. Probably the biggest things they’ve taught us are about structuring songs and being clever about where we put things, maximising their impact.

What’s the story behind the album title, ‘The Golden Ratio’?

Well if you have never heard of the Golden Ratio before, it’s a term used in the fields of mathematics and the arts. It’s used by architects to design buildings, for example, as it is said it will be more aesthetically pleasing, it’s found in nature, like the veins on a leaf or the branches on a tree. It’s meant to represent the beauty of life and everything in it. We worked so hard on this record and tried to sculpt it to be as near to perfect as possible, and we wanted a name that would reflect that. If you want to know more, it’s on Wikipedia!

How do the songs compare, both lyrical themes and musically, to your older material?
There’s a couple of songs that we plucked from the E.p and re-vamped – that probably says a lot. The E.p we released was us trying to find our way, work out what direction we wanted to head in really, so we took the feedback from that release on board and applied what we were learning from our live shows and at the studio to the new writing process… it’s a lot more structured, bigger sounding record and we really tried hard to show a growth and progression in our writing. Personally, I started writing about stuff that either I or the people closest to me had been through, rather than just trying to throw words together that rhyme. The music means more now whenever I’m singing on stage or in the practice room, it’s helped to deal with a lot of things too that I never knew how to overcome before.

How did you hook up with Small Town Records?
We actually started chatting with them a couple of years back, we’d spoken to a few joke labels who’d tried to mug us for huge sums of money and stupid contracts and Small Town stood out for us because their approach wasn’t full of shit, and neither was their roster…They wanted to work with the band and release the record and work hard on it, all they expected of us was the same in return…

Is releasing a physical CD still as important as it was say 2/3 years ago?  How do you all listen to music? Do you think music, as a commodity, now holds less value than a t-shirt or another piece of merch?
No, probably not as important – to us it’s hugely important, our album’s in HMV and other shops and it’s like a milestone… but we’re at the other end of the spectrum to your average music listener – sure you’ve got your purists who love to have the CD – but average Joe Bloggs is more concerned about the space they take up when they’re really only going to listen on their computer or i-pod, worst case, download it and burn it to a CD if they need to!! As for how we listen to it, we pretty much spend our lives in the back of a beaten up splitter van, so there’s not much space for a CD rack, we’re all about our i-pods! If we’re talking t-shirts I suppose you’re combining two interests that people have, fashion and music, so I don’t think there’s really been any change in the way people look at that side of things, buy a band shirt and you’re not only a music lover but a fashion icon!

What’s the plan for the rest of 2010? When can we expect to see you on tour again?
We’re pretty busy for the rest of the year! Next up is Sweden to tour and play Moshpit Open festival (Enter Shikari, Young Guns, Deaf Havana, Yashin, Campus) – then we come back for a few headline shows and Butserfest (My Passion, Bury Tomorrow, Deaf Havana, We Are the Ocean, Fei Comodo) AND THEN – we jump on to the Bury Tomorrow tour until October… at which point we’re working on something completely mental but we can’t tell you what that is yet…

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Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]