With the UK progressive metal scene constantly being critiqued, there are only a handful of bands successful enough to break through and receive airtime. In amongst the up and coming acts thriving for a chance in the limelight is MEMOREVE. With the six-piece releasing their debut EP, Insignia on October 21st, it could be the chance for the prog scene to see its rising stars burst into action. We spoke to bassist Matt Hudson and drummer Ross Lavery about the upcoming EP, the future of the UK’s prog metal scene and MEMOREVE‘s tour habits.
Your debut EP Insignia is going to be released on October 21st. How was the writing and recording process throughout the making of the EP?
Matt: Both the writing and the recording process is quite a meticulous process for us. We tend to spend a lot of time focusing on the little details to help make each track sound as special as it can be whilst also trying to maintain an element of spontaneity to allow the tracks to develop naturally. It takes a long time this way but we will never release something that we are not 100% pleased with.
With six members in MEMOREVE, all of which from an array of backgrounds, how does it influence the creative aspect of the music?
Matt: One of the biggest, and most special influences of having six members is the constant diversity of musical influences. All of us are genuine fans of music and seek out new discoveries all the time. This allows us to find inspiration from and across a wide collection of different genres and music styles from both old and new acts. We don’t always love the same bands but we are not afraid to listen to everyone’s ideas if something excites them.
One aspect of your music which is most exciting is the authenticity behind it. What message(s) are you trying to convey within your music?
Matt: For me personally the most important aspect about the music is the integrity of the artist. The subject and musical context is immaterial if the artist doesn’t truly believe in what they do, and that in-turn will effect their live performances! For me we are trying to convey the love and passion that we have for our music, and hopefully that leads to us delivering a powerful live show.
Throughout the EP, there is a clear influence of acts such as DREAM THEATER and TESSERACT within the music. How important and influential have these acts been on you as a band?
Matt: Personally I’m more of a TESSERACT fan, but both are definitely an influence on us. They were one of the first bands to make us re-evaluate the quality of our live performances with regards to lighting and gear quality. We all really enjoy their music, in particular the album Altered State, that album is definitely a group favourite!
Ross: One thing we are proud of in this band is the collection if endless influences that come from each individual. Both DREAM THEATER and TESSERACT definitely play a role in the direct influence of our music but it is always to various degrees of influence depending on each member. Anth (Guitar) is a huge DT fan and they are a massive influence on him but Matt not so much and others are equal fans of both. We always stay conscious of making sure we allow these influences to have a positive impact on the way we create our music but never pull direct from others or try to imitate in any way. We see too many bands look at their influences and try to copy the formula and think “well if it works for them it will work for us”. We always try to write instinctively and it is only natural that it will sometimes indirectly reflect the musicians and bands that we love.
The music video for your single Falling Further received an extremely positive response, are you planning on making any music videos for any of the tracks from Insignia?
Matt: The response to Falling Further was way beyond our expectations and it seems to keep gaining more attention of which we are extremely thankful for! We grew up with a developing internet and we appreciate the role it has played in the amount of bands we have been able to discover and enjoy even if they could never reach the UK. We are constantly experimenting with how to reach as many people around the world as possible and give them as much material to enjoy while it is impossible for us to reach them. We have plans to release a couple of videos to coincide with Insignia, what they are I can’t say just yet but we can’t wait to release them!
Do you feel as if the progressive scene in the UK is thriving and how do you feel you stand out from other bands in the same scene?
Matt: The UK has an juxtaposing habit of generating consistent flows of new and exciting music which is often then turned-on an rejected as soon as it reaches prominence. The recent movements in the prog influence is definitely exciting and the bands in the UK in particular are constantly pushing the boundaries! I can see how we can appeal to that market, but I would like to think that we offer a sound that can appeal to most metal fans and not just one scene.
You are just about to embark on a short tour throughout October. How do you prepare yourselves for live shows?
Matt: As a band we tend to rehearse intensely both the music and the orchestration of our lighting set-up and on stage equipment, even down to how we can get our gear on and off stage as smoothly as possible. Then once we are on the road we all have different preparation habits. Some of us will warm up with exercises both for the body and our instruments, others will try and relax with some creature comforts, and then others that can’t sit still just run around the place! We are all pretty savvy with each others on the road habits and hopefully we all help each other by respecting our individual quirks!
What is the most exciting aspect about being in a band which is rapidly increasing in popularity and receiving a lot of praise?
Matt: We try not to let the comments we receive distract us or affect us too deeply, even though it is wonderful to be told that people enjoy what you do! We try our best to stay focused on progressing the band and see just how far we can take it, we are always looking at new ways to share our music and what can we do that has never been done before! The most exciting aspect about all of this is getting to play live. No matter what happens, as long as we can play live we are happy and with every show we learn so much, grow stronger and get to share what we do with as many people as possible!
What can fans expect next from MEMOREVE?
Matt: Once we have finished this tour we will be releasing a few special things to round up the year, then once the new year reaches us we will be focusing on releasing new music in the first half of next year and then going on another tour. We are also hoping to join the festival run next year and generally are solely focused on making this band the biggest and most passionate it can be!
Insignia is set for release on October 21st via self-release.
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