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Interview: WhadABeast

Genre: Punk-Rock, Pop-Punk, punk, WhadAPunk – see what we did? Members: Joe ‘The Hoe’ Papworth – Bass/Vox Sam ‘best member of the band’ Papworth – Drums/Vox Derpus Maximus (or...

Genre: Punk-Rock, Pop-Punk, punk, WhadAPunk – see what we did?
Members:
Joe ‘The Hoe’ Papworth – Bass/Vox
Sam ‘best member of the band’ Papworth – Drums/Vox
Derpus Maximus (or Harvey Tomes) – That thing with six strings… commonly called a guitar…

Hometown: Twickenham

Description: Punk rock band of two brothers and Harvey (a scrape/friend). Proud winners of ‘Hampton’s Got Talent 2011’ We have finished our EP/Demo CD and are lined up to do a loads of gigs in the future. There seems to be an absence of very good English punk rock bands which we hope to change. We are a band with good motivation and perseverance, we want to succeed and we have a good mentality, taking inspiration from a wide range of bands. We enjoy performing and like to have fun while rehearsing and working as well as doing serious work.
Our links:
http://www.whadabeast.co.uk/
http://www.youtube.com/whadabeast1
http://www.whadabeast.co.uk/?page_id=13

Piotr Balkus: I read on your website: “Sorry, there aren’t any upcoming gigs right now”. Why aren’t you playing gigs right now? Where’s the problem?

SAM: We chose to not gig in the early part of the year so we could sit down and get new material written. We thought why go out and play our normal set when we can get fresh, new music for the fans when we come back, which also keeps it more beneficial for us as when people hear our new music, which we have not released, they can give us feedback and it ultimately helps us to decide which final songs will go on our follow-up EP.

JOE: Even though we are spending a lot of our time writing lyrics and piecing songs together, we are also playing a few gigs as well because we don’t want it to seem like that when we are writing the gigs stop. Mainly we like to make sure we can play gigs and keep the writing going together because this way, everyone’s happy.

PB: How do people react about your music?

SAM: When people first hear our music, I think they do find it catchy. I remember when we played a gig in Dalston last November and someone we had never spoken to came over to us and sang a line from the first song we ever wrote (“Once Again”). Along with being catchy I do also hope that people can relate to the scenarios we sing about or the situations that are proposed and dealt with in the time of one song. One day maybe people will listen to our songs to help them through tough times.

JOE: What I think personally is that when people listen to our music, it can make them feel differently depending on the song. When we write we tend to write about our own personal experiences which are hopefully experiences that all people can relate to. We have songs that can make people angry, happy and sad but mainly I think that when people listen to a certain song by us, they can feel how we felt writing it.

PB: You decided to make a purely demo CD – I guess it was made DIY – avoiding collaborating with any label…

SAM: In a way, I prefer doing an EP, or demo as a DIY CD. I am currently studying to be a music producer, but the only song I got to fully produce by myself was the last song “About That…”. Apart from that we did use another engineer. We decided not to chase up any labels and get attached to them because personally, I think that it is easier that way. When I get to produce a CD by myself in a studio, I think all of our ideas will be much easier to put on the song, and even though the first EP was a bit bland (effects wise), we have many ideas of how to make the new one much more interesting.”

JOE: As a band we have only been together for not even a year so our priority at the moment isn’t to be working with labels, it’s to be gigging and getting ourselves known. It is good to have Sam studying music tech (even though he just poured Irn Bru on my head) because this way we are able to have more interesting final cuts to our songs.

PB: What’s wrong with labels?

SAM: Ideally, we would love to be on a label, it must be what every young, new band dreams of and yes, it is a target for us. However, one thing that I do worry about is if the label wanted to change our ideas when we have something down. I am a guy who will take ideas from people, and if I feel it will benefit the song, then I’m happy to have it. But if a label was like ‘we want you to change your whole song and make it sound completely different’ I wouldn’t be too happy. That’s like being asked ‘OK, we want you to change your band name to fit the genre we want you to play,’ it’s just not something I would want to happen right now.

PB: Your music is very simple, and even a bit primitive (in a good way)…

JOE: Well, the genre we are playing of ‘pop-punk’ has never been a known genre of having immensely complicated melodies and insane guitar solos. So even though our music is simple, it’s very effective and the powerful lyrics back it up. Many big pop-punk bands today are hugely known for their simplicity like Blink 182 and Bowling For Soup and we would love to follow in their footsteps.

SAM: To me, when I think of Punk in general, whether you look back at the likes of The Clash and The Ramones, or look at today with bands like YMAS and Green Day, it always quite a simplistic genre. However, when Blink and Green Day have progressed they have got a lot more complicated as they have advanced as musicians. Joe and Harvey are relatively new to the band scene and I am not amazingly experienced so as we gel we can start making more complicated structures and riffs, but for now, it’s more about getting our message across with our relatable lyrics.

PB: You think 21st century people understand punk music and punk songs message?

SAM: “Personally, the whole music game has changed over the last 10 years. Punk is a very unappreciated music genre where as personally, the mainstream music, just does not deserve to be as highly regarded as it is. I do think though that punk songs do usually have a very clear message regarding what the song is about, just some bands may disguise it more, or make the song one whole metaphor. Punk is past its era, coming from the 70’s and then peaking around the 90’s but I do sincerely hope that it has another boom very soon.

PB: I just wanted to ask you about Blink 182…

SAM: Blink 182 are the reason WhadABeast started, I remember me and Joe watching one of their videos and we just came up with the idea of starting a punk band. They are the sound of Punk today, and listening to them, you can see where Punk has gone over the last 30 years. They influence a lot of our music but have always stuck by Buddy Rich’s theory that every band you hear influences you in a different way. But mainly I like Blink because they are so easy to relate to, Tom, the guitarist, has had a lot of dark days and all 3 of us feel we can relate to the lyrics they all write about.

JOE: The main reason Blink 182 are my favourite band is because they are everything that I want to be. As a live band they are amazing and always have been, watching their gig at Big Day Out from 2000 you can really see how they are just big children but you can also see how they are amazing and enjoy every gig they play (even though Tom messes up on guitar in nearly every song). As the bassist of the band, I can say that Mark Hoppus is my favourite member of the trio, this is because he has such great stage presence as he is always be jumping around the stage as well as not messing up any of his songs. This is only half of the battle though, because Blink are also one of the best bands on record as well because they bring a new twist into every song which is what keeps them so original. Plus they use penis jokes.

PB: Why is Sam described as the “best member of the band”?

SAM: “Ah yes, the ‘Best Member of The Band’ thing was a joke that just stuck really. It came from Joe being the ‘S**test member’ and Harvey being the ‘Most Retarded’ member so I thought I may as well be the best.

PB: Tell me more about your EP and upcoming stuff.

SAM: We released our debut EP ‘Beastlyness Included As Standard’ last December. We spent a lot of time writing the songs, making sure that people would be able to relate to what we are singing about. It was always going to be a more experimental EP, to see what we were capable of after a short amount of time together, and listening to it back, I think the 2nd EP will be 1 million times as good as ‘BIAS ‘was. The way we wrote the music was, we would get all of our ideas together, lyrics and music, and then rent out a hall near to our house. We then wrote there for about 5 days getting basic ideas down and then we finalised these over the coming months before we went in the studio for a few weeks to get it all properly down. As for the future, this year we are looking to release a single and get pretty much all of the writing and recording done for our new EP. We are aiming to go into the studio with a lot of tracks to record so we have a lot of choice as to what we pick on the final cut. Out new material is very much a mix of old era pop-punk and new era punk-rock so some heavier stuff with some quick stuff. But I can’t really give too much away as of yet seeing that we haven’t even written half of the songs.

PB: I’m looking forward to hear this new stuff. Thanks for interview.

Words: Piotr Balkus

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