"We were looking at festivals and Big Red Rising came up whilst we were searching, we’ve never managed to play London so we thought it’d be a great way to get our name and music into London!" That's what brought STAND AMONGST GIANTS to get on board with Big Red Rising, THE event for up and coming bands in the UK, held at The Big Red, London, on the first Saturday of every month.
The Big Red, one of London's finest rock bar and music venues, open their doors each month to showcase original rock bands from all across the UK, with Red Hawk Rising hosting. Each event is live streamed via TotalRock Facebook channel and uploaded to their YouTube channel. Media and airplay time is also offered by Down The Front, including tracks featured on the podcast.
"As a band we are hoping to get our name into London and hopefully make it so we can play down there a lot more! We’re bringing the biggest, best and baddest blues rock you’ve heard in a long time, it’ll be the best thing since sliced bread!" says Ben Boswell, lead guitarist for the Chesterfield-based hard rock-blues band who have adopted the DTF moniker of 'southern fried blues rock'; "I think you guys at Down The Front described it perfectly. I really love that description!"
Speaking of venues, this hard-working band may be trying to get further afield and crack a London audience but to date they rate Chesterfield's own Real Time Live and The Giffard Arms amongst their favourite venues and are praying The Hairy Dog in Derby survives the recent cull of music venues across the UK; "I love The Giffard Arms, the sound is always great and the place has a very dedicated musical crowd that turn up to most gigs that are on there no matter the band. I love Real Time Live, I also love The Hairy Dog and if that ends up shutting then I’ll be incredibly upset, not just me but a lot of musicians small, large and internationally. It's a brilliant venue, great bar, one of the best stages I’ve ever played on and it’s just a proper good music venue for anyone and everyone!"
So with the closure of more and more venues, is rock dead? Of course not… "It’s not dead, people just don’t look hard enough, if it's not on the radio or given to them, they aren’t interested. If you go on Spotify every band has a related artist, look at us, we’re playing shows up and down the country. Rock isn’t dead at all, people just need to stop following your band, or saying that they love your music and actually turn up to shows. All it takes is for people to come out and watch their own local bands and rock will make a huge comeback!" Well said.
So, what else have the guys got in pipeline? "We’re playing Hard Rock Hell 12 in Wales on the same bill as Saxon and The Dead Daisies! We’ve got the show in London for Big Red with Dead Man's Whiskey and Dirty Ol’ Crow on the 1st of September, then we have two of our own headline shows, one in Chesterfield [and] another in Nottingham. After that we play a show in Burnley with our newly found friends in THEIA, then the day after that we fly to the states for a break. We come back and two days later we’ve got a show in Chesterfield, then it’s a break until November when we play again at Real Time Live, after that it’s the big one, it's Hard Rock Hell 12 which will be good. Then a week later we play with American Blues Rockers Idlewar!"
Events like Big Red Rising are proving important in getting bands' names and music out there and this band agree on the power of social media in today's market; "Social media is massively important to us, without it we would never have gotten in contact with you guys at Down The Front, or our great friends in The Howling Tides and These Wicked Rivers. Not just that, we wouldn’t have gained the following we have now or been able to promote ourselves as much, I think social media has really helped us get to where we are!"
I saw these guys recently in Sheffield at Tramlines (see review here - https://www.downthefrontmedia.com/down-the-front-media/live-gig-reviews/tramlines-fringe-21-22-07-18/ ) and they blew me away so I asked Ben what inspires them; " I write the basic ideas for songs, I write all the riffs and music, I bring it to the band and we’ll just jam it out and work on parts until we’re happy with an end result! I love writing music and I just write all the time, I take structure inspiration from other bands like different approaches to starting songs or different approaches to choruses and so on but I feel sometimes if you listen to music too much you end up copying! Saying that though, I did write the last album in America in the middle of Hurricane Matthew, we were state curfewed and had nothing else to do so I just sat and wrote till we could go home!"
These guys are also genuinely good blokes so please do say hi to them; "We don’t necessarily have a pre band ritual before we go on stage but we find that just getting to the show, setting up then mingling with the crowd is a great way to get pumped up for a show!"
Get down to BIG RED RISING 1st September to see these guys live and for free, alongside two other great UK rock bands, at The Big Red, Holloway Road, London.
Vocals: Rob Walker
Lead Guitar: Ben Boswell
Bass: George Sharpe
Drums: Stan Tomkinson