Red XIII are a 4 piece sleaze-rock band comprised of Rich (vocals and rhythm guitar), Paul (lead guitar and vocals), Lak (bass and vocals), and Matt (drums). They describe their sound as "gritty and textured songs with high octane riffs and face-melting solos". The Roulette EP is out now, and we caught up with the band ahead of their performance at Big Red Rising, 3rd March live at The Big Red, Holloway Road, London N7 - this is a free event (over 18's) from 7.30pm.
DTF: So, how did you get together as a band?
RXIII: We’ve all messed around in bands since our teens and it was Paul that brought us together – he’d worked with all of us separately on previous projects and knew that Rich and Matt (both very active on the covers circuit) were hungry to make some original serious music. We started playing around with material that Paul and our original bassist had written together and things have evolved from there.
DTF: What are the biggest challenges you have faced since getting together as a band?
RXIII: Like any unsigned band, our main challenge is getting our music heard. Apart from gigging as much as we can, we’ve been promoting the EP with our ‘Green Eyed Monster’ video, made by a talented young filmmaker called Neil Collins from Brighton. We had a small budget, so we filmed it locally (in a desolate field on the Isle of Sheppey) and only had about twelve hours to shoot it. The vid is basically a festival of violence and burning cars, so it was a massive challenge to get it done in one go, but we’re chuffed with the end result – check it out at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QxMjl39IgZ8.
DTF: Who are your greatest influences?
RXIII: We’re all big fans of Metallica, Black Stone Cherry, Clutch and Joe Bonomassa. Our lead guitarist is also pretty obsessed with Nuno Bettencourt of Extreme.
DTF: What made you want to take part in BIG RED RISING?
RXIII: The Big Red is a proper no-nonsense rock n’ roll bar where you’re guaranteed a great night out, you get a buzz as soon as you walk in. The regulars are all nuts about live music so it’s a brilliant place to play, and the atmosphere is always great. With so many live music venues closing these days, the Big Red is a huge part of the London scene now and we jumped at the chance to play there. We’re also massive fans of the pulled pork!
DTF: What do you have planned for us on the night?
RXIII: Enough hard-hitting face-melting rock to leave a moist patch in your pants! We’ll also be debuting some material which is a bit heavier than what we’ve done up until now, we hope it will go down well with the metalhead regulars at Big Red.
DTF: How important are events like this in supporting new music?
RXIII: Essential – it’s crazy how big concerts and festivals sell out in minutes now, yet so few venues are doing anything to support up and coming talent. Hats off to you for putting this on, and the people who come out to support new bands.
DTF: What are your plans for the rest of 2018? More music? Touring?
RXIII: We’re actually looking for a full-time bassist at the moment – our good friend and Big Red regular Christina Lake will be stepping in for us at BRR#6, but we’re looking for someone Kent
based ASAP as we’ve got plans for lots of touring and we’re writing new material as well. Get in touch if you’re interested via our bandpage...
DTF: What do you like best, performing live or recording?
RXIII: For us, performing live is what it’s all about and that’s what we do it for, you can’t beat it.
DTF: How do you write your music? Is it a collaborative effort?
RXIII: Our singer Rich tends to bring a rough idea to rehearsal, which our drummer Matt normally tears to pieces and we end up creating a totally different song from. Luckily our guitarist Paul is a really versatile player, we normally leave it to him to find the hook, and it seems to work pretty well for us.
DTF: What is your favourite festival?
RXIII: It’s got to be Download – hopefully we will get to play there one day, main stage would be nice!
DTF: Apart from yourselves, of course, which other bands on the circuit would you recommend to people to check out?
RXIII: If you missed them at Big Red a couple of weeks ago, check out Jukebox Monkey, they are a brilliant Stoner/Southern Rock band from Kent, we also love Hard Rock/Grunge outfit Ace Mafia and hope we will get to play alongside one of these two this year.
DTF: Do you share a goal where your music is concerned?
RXIII: We just want to share our music with as many people as we can – thanks again to Big Red Rising for supporting original new music - looking forward to a great night on the 3rd, see you there!