The Guilty Pleasures Interview
01/10/2006 (with James)
Please introduce the band; who is in it, how you met
and the average
I think we’ve now just about managed to secure a strong line up
after a huge
change late last year. The Guilty Pleasures now consists of:
James; Bass / Vocals
Originally we were a 3 piece to begin with but soon after expanded
4-piece after only a couple of gigs. We were just 3 / 4 good mates
good time. However, when we parted ways with our original guitarist
drummer last year we brought in Chris and Ste who we found through
people. I think it’s safe to say we’re now 4 good mates
We were all only 15 when the band first started a couple of years
with the new members the average age of TGP is now 18 (but only just!)
You have an EP out (for sale on PunkOiUK) how
did this come about and how
has it been received?
We have 2 EP’s out now actually! We must get you some copies of
the new EP.
if you’ve not already been sent some by the label.
Our first EP, “Think
Of England”, has now almost sold out
of two pressings
(I say almost because PunkOiUK is obviously the only place with any left
buy them whilst you still have the chance!). We released that in July
after meeting Noize Anoize Records. It all came together pretty quickly
we were still only 15 when it was recorded! Its reception has been great
we got on many of the gigs we’ve played through using that as a
Once the line up change happened at the end of last year, we knew we
to get some new material out as the first EP didn’t really represent
band as well as the new songs did. “Freedom Of Free Speech” was
May of this year and is being received ten times better than “Think
Of England.” We as a band are also a lot happier with this one as
we feel it
represents how our sound has progressed greatly over the last few years.
What are the bands main influences, and how
do you get described in
As a band we all have different influences really, as we’ve all
introduced to punk in different ways. I’m into almost all punk
in all its
various forms (from UK Subs to Anti-Flag to Less Than Jake) whereas Yohan
mostly into his old school British punk (UK Subs / Sub Humans etc); Chris
mostly into his American punk (NOFX / Descendents / Bad Religion etc)
Ste is mostly into his classic metal (Iron Maiden etc) … but we
making him see sense and realise what proper music is!
We’ve been described as sounding like everything from 80’s
hardcore to newer
American punk so find it pretty difficult to describe ourselves. The
thing for people to do is to check us out on Myspace at
www.myspace.com/guiltypleasures and take a listen for themselves
What is your take on many younger punks
favouring US bands rather than UK
Personally I don’t see there being a problem with
younger punks being into
US bands at all, as many of them are great, including Anti-Flag, Rise
Against, The Casualties etc. However, a lot of younger people, we find,
believe that these are the only good bands and aren’t as willing
out a band from the UK. There are easily as many great UK bands that are
still touring and putting out new music as US bands. Chances are they
charge rip-off prices to get into their shows either like many of the US
bands do as well (not mentioning any names).
The sad fact is though is that new UK bands seem to be, generally speaking,
ignored by the larger labels. Many punk bands will claim that they don’t
want to be on a larger label and see it “as selling out” (when
major labels rather than larger independent labels) but you can almost
guarantee that a lot just say that because we all know it’s very
difficult to get signed to a larger label if you’re a UK punk band.
In the US though, it seems to be completely different with there being
larger independent labels such as Epitaph and Fat Wreck Chords. These
larger than many UK independent labels and have the ability to give newer
bands the exposure they need to break through into international markets.
Sadly though, as there are so many bands, it seems pretty rare that
get signed to these labels.
What I do like to see though is US bands who take out at least one younger
UK band on tour with them. This gives the UK bands the exposure to their
crowds, which they would usually not get by playing with the large majority
of UK punk bands. Anti-Flag did this back in May and Rancid are doing
Do you think your age has acted in your favour
or against you? What tips
would you give to other bands your age looking for gigs? Is punk still
I certainly don’t think our age has acted in our favour at all
partly our fault. On the other hand though, it hasn’t really acted
When we started off we were only 15. However we didn’t really
want to make
our age known as we were worried we wouldn’t get the chance to
play in many
pubs etc being underage. Looking back, this was a huge mistake though.
sometimes think people didn’t actually realise how young we were
due to us
trying to hide it as we’ve now seen how bands like Outl4w go down
crowds, who know that they’re so young! With us all being around
we’re stuck in an awkward spot. We’re too old to play on
the fact that we’re
a young band but feel we’re still a little bit too young to be
seriously by a lot of the older punks to begin with. However those who
see us always comment on how impressed they were with us for our age!
How did you all get into punk in
the first place? And what do mates think
about you being into punk? What is the first record each member of the band
We all got into punk in a variety of different ways. I’ve
always heard punk
from being very young, as my dad is into a lot of the older punk bands.
I’ve never really been into anything other than punk. For the others
it’s something they’ve got into in a big way over the last
couple of years.
I think it’s safe to say though that without the huge Pop Punk outburst
we were 12 / 13 with bands such as Blink 182 and Sum 41 then there’s
chance none of us would be into the music we are. These pop punk bands
great for introducing young people to other bands, as when a band like
182 list their influences in interviews as bands such as Bad Religion and
the like, you immediately go and check them out at that age. Then when
see their influences as 70’s and 80’s bands you then go and
check them out
To be honest, a lot of the people we know are into metal and emo but
that’s the same anywhere now a days isn’t it? A lot of people
knock punk for being
so simple compared to their technical metal but to be honest we don’t
We’re into to what we’re into and they’re into what
they’re into. It does
mean the punk scene round here sucks though!
I won’t even attempt to remember what the first record I bought
was and I’m
sure the others are the same! It’s fairly safe to say that when
bands are asked that, they make up a record to impress readers as no
one can really
remember what it was. Most likely it was something embarrassing at the
of 8 or something though so it’s probably a good job we can’t
What is the scene like in your area? And what
do you think abuot the younger punk scene in general?
As I mentioned before, the punk scene in Lancaster sucks!
Having said that,
when we played with the Sub Humans here last year the gig was sold out
in advance. Put a known band on and the gig’s easily sell out, but
night of less known punk bands and you’re lucky if the venue’s
The way to create a scene in the local area is to support the newer bands
well as the established bands … after all, the older bands can’t
doing what they’re doing much longer (with the exception of maybe
Harper and the UK Subs who seems to love what he’s doing more and
older he gets!)
The younger punk scene in general, to be honest, isn’t that amazing
moment. Not where we come from anyway. Like I said above, people are
than willing to pay £10 or more to see an established band (either
UK or US) but aren’t prepared to pay £2 or £3 to see
a number of younger /
newer punk bands. This can get quite annoying at times, especially when
lot of the newer younger bands are as good as, if not better than, the
What is the best gig The Guilty Pleasures have ever
done and who else was
on the line-up? What bands would you like to tour with?
We’ve done so many gigs over the past 2 years that
it’s pretty hard to
choose one as being the best. There’s been a couple which have
though such as the Leeds Cockpit Punk Festival last November which also
Sub Humans, GBH and Goldblade on the line up. That was the first bigger
we’d done and it’s led to an awful lot more. Supporting the
UK Subs for the
first time in Blackburn last December was also a really good night, and
led to Charlie Harper asking us to support them on quite a lot of occasions
since. Playing with Discharge at Academy 3 in Manchester in March was
As for bands we’d like to tour with, there’s really too
many to mention. I
think we’d be a good match going out on tour with a band such
or Bad Religion though. Who knows, maybe one day it will happen! As
near future, we’d love to tour with Middle Finger Salute, another
punk band from Blackburn who are great mates of ours.
Plans, gigs and releases
planned for 2006.
We’re quite busy now until the end of the year gig wise.
We’ve got quite a
lot coming up with UK Subs in November and December along with support
to The Grit, The Vibrators, Phinius Gage and MC Lars (Yep … we’re
a “Post Punk Laptop Rapper!”).
We’re also writing an awful lot of new material at the moment
hopefully be recorded sometime early in 2007. We’ve done 2
EP’s now so I
guess the next step for us is a full album. Hopefully that’ll
see the light
of day sometime in mid 2007 once we finally take a break from gigging
round to recording it.
Then next year we head out on the second Spit and Sawdust Tour in
March / April. For anyone who doesn’t know what this is it’s
a back to
basics punk tour featuring many great upcoming UK punk bands. The
OMD (Fungal Punk) and Andy (Noize Anoize) did a great job this year
sure anyone who came to any of the gigs will agree with me on that.
Any final comments?
I’ll just quickly say thanks to everyone for reading
this and thanks to
everyone who’s supported us in any way over the past 2 years. Please
continue to do so, it means a lot to us! It’s difficult at some
times trying to juggle band commitments with school / college / uni
but we manage pretty well.
If you’ve not checked us out before please do so at
go out and buy our EP’s
or come to one
of our gigs! We promise we won’t disappoint!
Please note that the opinions expressed
by band members does not necessarily reflect the views of this website.
Punk & Oi in the UK Limited are in no way liable for comments made
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