RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW SHADOWS OF A SILHOUETTE
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I grew up without musical influence and with lots of negative pre dispositions like something was missing in my life. I always wanted to achieve something great but had no idea how I was going to do this in my life. On a very fateful day in January 2016, I became aware of the death of David Bowie. Rathe rout of character for me I was struck by what I felt and saw when I investigated who this dead man on the news was. I formed a very strong connection with how his work made me feel. I began a journey of further understanding myself and other artists that have come before me. I experienced a level of inspiration that I had never felt before, so much so that I picked a guitar and started to teach myself how to play naturally and quickly became a songwriter and expressionist with great passion as I proceeded to learn about other artists similar to me. I knew music was the thing for me and realised that this was something that could be my legacy and a positive one at that.
Introduce us to you / all to the members and your musical history.
Lead singer and lead/ rhythm guitar – Nathan Brown 21. Started playing the guitar at the age of 15 years and has since self-taught piano, drums and lyricism and music production.
Lead/ rhythm guitar and backing vocals – Reece Carter 22. Both Nathan and Reece have been writing and producing songs together for nearly 5 years. Reece has been playing the guitar since childhood and is a very dedicated and natural performer/songwriter.
Drums – Tyler Henderson 25. Tyler has been playing the drums his entire life mostly with his brothers band namely ‘Shackled’. His influences have been heavy rock material and metal. Tyler loves the live stage and is a natural showman.
Bass guitar – Fergus Murtagh 22. Fergus is a naturally fascinating musician who is the newest recruit to the band. His career as a musician started with the group and is now established himself.
The music industry is the hardest industry in the world to progress in, How do you feel you are doing?
I don’t have a doubt in my mind that we have been more unstoppable with all our adversities, lack of formal education, semi-urban non city status than ever before. We have all been working full-time and have committed ourselves, our time and our own money to this desire to fulfil our dreams. Our dual career lifestyle certainly sets us apart from all other bands. Economically and psychologically, we are fully committed to showcasing our musical passions.
Our fingertips bear the callouses of guitar players and instrumentalists whereas the rest of hands bear the scars of hard labour, which is essential for any hard-working individual in poor economically challenged social background.
How have your songwriting skills developed over time?”
Regardless of My idols, preferred genre, or style, I am a poor imitator, my only path to future accomplishment in music is through trusting in what I like, what forms of musical integrity are important to me, and in the end how my expressions are to be interpreted in the audience’s mind. One of my key principles (all my principles are realised by myself after the fact, I must study myself to understand what I am doing) is to make music that me and my band enjoy listening to ourselves. We do not seek affirmation or appreciation from un appreciators, just to be ever wiser and proud of our private little middle England legacy at the end of the day, we know how amazing and uniquely strong we have been. We still trust that a part of us is in everyone, and this private show will likely spread as long as we remain true to ourselves.
So my writing skills have never been in doubt from the beginning whatsoever, and it’s impossible to track any kind of development. No two of our songs are the same or even appear related genetically. The development side of songwriting for me has always been more closely associated with my philosophical and personal developments. raising my son, working hard labour 5-6 days a week, combatting my mental disabilities and moving away from my troubled youth yet maintaining true devotion to the art form is every musicians true songwriting journey. Songwriting is a part of me and therefore develops with me as I grow as a person. The truth is in the last 5 years, I’ve gone from being a broken boy to a grown and valuable man who will only, and only has proven to serve our musical ability.
I’m seeing a lot of debate about females not feeling safe at music gigs, any thoughts on what we need to do to help?
First of all the music that we create as Artists must respect every one of all walks of life. Whether that be Women, men, or different religious cultures, beliefs or ethnic backgrounds. Equality or representation and participation are very important for us to be made clear with our music and our vibe. The line of respect should never be blurred and I see this happen in a lot of the most popular music in the world which is obviously a terrible step in the wrong direction, I would always try to imagine what my idols would expect from the audience members in their crowds and followers. The music is the atmosphere and that is clearly the first foundation or a safe event, (safe music) I know that anybody who really listens to our music is a person that harbours good morals.
We should all look after each other at gigs, one thing that always makes my gigging experience far more fun and safe are when I go to gigs with trusted friends. We must be able to trust in the staff that are there to protect us. Its also incredibly important to be aware of who we trust especially strangers, but I would like everyone to know that we will not be silent on any matters during, before or after our shows and we will personally be on that stage firstly to astound you and secondly to be there to protect and look out for you. And young women being targeted is obviously a disgrace and won’t be tolerated by shadows and our supporters. You hear terrifying reports of injections. Anybody seen with needles at our shows will promptly find in snatched out of their hands and hanging out of their own arms as they are thrown out the door by me personally.
As you develop as an artist and develop using socials what ways do you get new ears on your music? Any tips?
This environment we are forced to collude with gives the illusion of countless options for growth but who goes to the library to get up-to-date music magazines for discovering music? A library that is also an infinite shopping centre, real estate agents, car dealership, super cinema, never-ending adverts as you browse through your next holiday as you watch the news and tweet your day and show everyone your breakfast whilst buying drugs in the basement of the library (the dark web)…… anyway. Behold the over-saturation, sheer high mountain top you wish to climb which is ‘The Internet’.
It’s my personal belief that you make all your best and most honest impressions to real people as you meet them every day in the real world. Don’t be shy as there is no shame in this game and there is no need to hide behind a screen as everyone who is in there is out here and would love to hear directly from you.
Tell us Two truths and a lie about you.
We are slightly insane.
We have no formal or informal musical education
We are not very comparable at all to any other artists in our sound.
What’s your thought on Spotify monopoly on the music industry?
The Ceo of Spotify is one of many Western Oligarchs.
Spotify is criminally opposed to independent artistry and talented musicians making fantastic music on a budget, it has a statistical obsession; I believe it is to show the vast separation from ‘independence’ and its biggest investors which are the largest labels, and also is absolutely purely designed to be an advertisement platform. Now small musicians must compete with all forms of audio media. It is of no expense to Spotify that our voice and particularly the voice of rock and roll belongs to the youth so they can be prepared to fight for what’s right as they grow up in our ever-shrinking freedoms in the commonwealth.
Instead, rock and roll progression is cunningly hidden away at the bottom of its capitalist food chain. If imagine by john Lennon was released today it would certainly be pushed to the back of the que to make way for songs with truly inspiring titles such as “No love” – Cardi B or “stripper hoe” can you believe these titles were decided in board rooms on her behalf, as well as the lyrics? What a laughable trap we have found ourselves in.
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories?
As a working man, I don’t have the time. Also, I am living in working-class Britain. Maybe one day I will shine a light on things but it will be based on what I witness with my own eyes. These things won’t be theories, I will present them as evidence.
Did you buy anything you don’t need during the pandemic?
What was the worst experience on stage?
I’m fortunate enough to have had only two maybe three terrible experiences on stage.
The one I will put to you now actually was a 50/50 well-received show but I cannot bear to watch my performance back and never have. This was our headline show in 2019??? If I remember correctly. This was at Rough Trade in Nottingham and I was 17 Performing with shadows. As Biggy smalls once said “my will is weak” as building to up to the performance I nonchalantly sank about 12 pints before gracing the stage to perform our 20-song setlist. Needless to say, it was a mistake and something we laugh about now because it was an important learning experience.
Other times included huge leaks onto the stage and infighting on stage leading to a full-blown fistfight.
Tell us something about you / each member that you think people would be surprised about.
Reece carter our lead guitarist had an extreme bout of Psychosis in his third year of studying law which made him miss his final exams as he was secluded away on the ward in chesterfield. Only to return the next year after a difficult and extremely admirable recovery the likes I have only seen him achieve to get a highly honourable degree.
Tyler Henderson our drummer, is a couple of years older than the rest of us and has been performing and headlining shows and festivals since he was about 10. Sharing the stage with the likes of iron maiden and black sabbath with his other band “Shackled” he was attending gigs before the rest of us were born. And he’s only a few years older.
I and Fergus are the least experienced members of the band and also the least experienced musicians, we have known each other all our lives since we were at primary school together in Alfreton Derbyshire. And the surprising thing about us is that we both surprised each other with our late inspiration and aspirations with music. I and Fergus wrote a song together in my early musical production attempts long before me and Reece the original members of shadows were writing together. These early recordings are available among many other exclusives on SoundCloud.
I think it would surprise people that I am a father of a 3-year-old at 21 also, and I’m the only father in the band.
What makes you stand out as a band/artist?
We have a name like Shadows of a silhouette which actually means something.
It’s very deep and is personal to whoever thinks about it hard enough. It’s like a mirror.
I hear you have new music, what can you tell us about it.
Modern age blues is a song that depicts the bleak and uninspiring era we find ourselves living in. To many people, it’s no secret of the tumultuous nature of the band’s own lives, but healing is a journey, and we wanted to make a song that illustrates putting your first foot forward and attempting to overcome hard times, with this particular song being the brainchild of our lead guitarist and inspired by his own battle with mental health.
Written on his 21st birthday during a 3 week stay in the psych ward, which in the time since we’ve come to learn is a much more relatable experience than you think nowadays, the song title and lyrics convey a new way to describe a feeling that many young people suffer with; The Modern Age Blues.
The song depicts the bleak and uninspiring modern era we find ourselves living in. An expression used to describe the feeling you get when you realise that in the midst of humanities recent connectivity with everyone in the world through what is in your pocket, you can’t find the time to talk to anyone and we are more separated than ever before.
What you see with your eyes is bleak and it’s hard not to feel uninspired. Dedicated to thoughts of depression.
Talk me through the thought process of the new tune/s.
There isn’t so much a thought process initially, More like a discovery. At first its like uncovering a fossil, but a fossil from the future. You might first discover the foot, or the head or maybe you first discover the location to conduct your excavations. Really song writing is about picking what’s already possible out of the aether or the realms of non existence. Really we are our music and our music is us and that’s how it will always sound. It is very natural But like I said earlier you make songs that you want to listen too and enjoy. This kinda flows out of you. I’m always writing riffs, beats, and sometimes entire songs lyrics before I have any of the other pieces of the puzzle. You have a hypothesis and it is a imaginative process. You can only hope to be as correct as possible and true to yourself. And truly we are rock and roll Rebels with a heart.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
“If you can dream and not make dreams your master,
If you can think and not make thoughts your aim,” Then you’ll be pretty admirable.
Listen to more rock and roll music. Don’t be afraid to be a loser for a while, you will learn some of your best lessons in this time. And it is not a death sentence.
Most people have to be losers and have no choice because everyone else is so thirsty for success around them. These people are the honest ones. Help them up and walk with them.
We are all equal and feeling ashamed is a direct consequence of your pride.
And if your pride stops you from shaking another man’s hand without filming it and putting it on youtube. Then pretty soon it’s greed and then you are selfish beyond blindness and now you’ll never see.