Fahran are an up and coming five piece melodic rock band from Derbyshire that are set to play both Download this weekend and Bloodstock later in the year. We managed to grab some time with their drummer Josh "JR" Windsor.
I guess the majority of our readers won't have heard of you guys yet - although I suspect that will change over the next few months - can you introduce yourselves?
We have Nick Whitcroft as our singer
Alex Stroud on Bass
Jake Graham on Guitar
Chris Byrne on Guitar
and JR Windsor on Drums!
You're in the pretty unique situation of playing two of the biggest UK rock festivals this year - Download & Bloodstock - stupid question I know, but looking forward to them?
Nah not really... yes yes YES. We can't wait to be there playing electric and acoustic on the two best festivals ever! I'm already wearing my artist pass and it's only Tuesday!
It's a huge opportunity for you - Have you ever played anything as big as these before?
We have played great gigs that have really stood out before, one of our favourites was Rock City with Heaven's Basement. But nothing can really compare to the size and scale of Download and Bloodstock. So....no!
I'd imagine just being part of the backstage atmosphere is going to be a blast! - are you looking forward to bumping into anyone in particular?
Hoping to bump into/hug and never let go Iron Maiden. Also catching up with some bands we have had the pleasure to play with in the past like I AM I, UFO and Heaven's Basement. Really looking forward to catching their sets too!
So let's get some background on you - you released your first album in 2008 when the average age of the band was around 16 - when did you first form the band ?
I have known Jake and Alex from a previous band when I was about 14. We released a few albums under Toxic Federation, but Fahran is a completely different band altogether. We have only been around about a year and a half at full line up with Chris and Nick and have already achieved so much more than any other bands we have been in.
Did you advertise for band members for Toxic Federation or was it one of these bands that formed naturally ?
At first we did. When Nick joined us, it was for Toxic Federation. But after jamming out demo tracks and talking about what direction we wanted to go in, it was a much better idea to start fresh as a brand new band with a new musical direction.
How did the band dynamics change when Nick joined?
The band got a much more mature sound. Songs had a lot more melody and thought into every aspect of the vocal lines and lyrically as well. He brought loads of ideas to the table. Not trying to big him up too much! But yeah...he can stay.
Your music is modern but melodic with a real "old school" quality to it - were you aiming for any particular kind of sound?
We try to take inspiration from our collective influences like Alter Bridge, Black Stone Cherry and Shinedown. But in the end, we don't aim for a set style for our songs. We just write what we think sounds and feels good to us and go with it. All of us have such diverse influences separately, it makes our song writing/studio time awesome. Like Bittersweet History is a real melodic, old school ballad. But We See Right Through You is heat, double bass pedal, metal!
You write your own songs - how does that process work? Lyrics first or a killer riff?
Killer riff! Usually someone comes up with an awesome guitar line, or Jake and/or Chris play a demo track they have recorded at home to us as a base idea. Then we play it out as a band, tweaking things, removing bits etc until we are happy with the music. Chris can be found sat in a dark room drinking loads of tea, writing his melodic poetry down and again, it's bounced around and changed until we are happy! Once the vocal melody and lyrics are done and we are all 100% happy, we starting recording and gigging them a few times.
How do you measure success ? - packed gigs, multi-platinum albums, songwriting awards? What would you like to acheive?
Success to us would be a signed band, gigging every night and travelling from country to country, playing to packed out audiences! That would be amazing and is what we would love to achieve.
What's on the horizon after Bloodstock?
Continuing with our writing and recording for the next album that we plan to release in early 2014. Also, we are planning a tour and various other plans with some really amazing bands. Keeping really busy and making sure we are out there in everyone's faces this year!
ok a few quick fire ones before we go ..
If you can support anyone on tour - who would it be?
ooooooooh. I think it is safe to say, either Alter Bridge, Shinedown, Black Stone Cherry.
..and who would you want to tour as your support band?
OUR support band?! Wow. ermmm.... Arthemis are a great band we have toured with before. They are at download on the Sunday and were a fantastic band to go drinking with. So yeah, they would be awesome to have with us!
What's on your iPod right now?
Lots of music, a few photos of my dog and drum kit and Season 3 of the walking Dead.. But I am currently listening to Lamb Of God - Blackened The Cursed Sun
Tell us something about Fahran that will surprise us !
This is such a hard question to answer!!! Our Artwork for the debut album was created by an Architect who so happens to be Nick's brother! Epic artwork innit!
Anything else you want to tell us ?
We shall see all you lovely people at Download and Bloodstock. Looking forward to every second! Thanks ;)
Thanks to JR for his time - keep an eye out for these guys, they're destined for bigger things. Check out the album here.