RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW SWANSEA BAND APATHY AVENUE
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide to start the band?
We’ve always been quite a mis-match group of musicians. We’ve all been in bands seperately, and we just managed to stumble onto each other in order to make us what we are today.
Introduce us all to the members and your musical history?
We have Anthony Sefton on lead vocals. Anthony has been singing, and around the arts from a young age, has always had a flair for showmanship, and will quite frankly, jump off anything. We have Dylan Baugh on Guitar and Vocals. Dylan has been playing from the age of about 9, and Apathy Avenue (or a previous iteration), was his very first band, and that’s why he is known as the dad of the band. On the other side of the stage, we have M.O.T on guitar. M.O.T (not his birth name) has been playing from a later age than the rest of us, but once you see his pink sparkly guitar, his bright white jeans and lack of a shirt, you know he was born to make music. Liam Hawkes is our man behind the kit. Liam has had a long history of being in different bands from a range of genres throughout his tenure as a drummer, and has even dabbled in learning a bit of bass. Last but not least, our bassist, Alef Matthews. Perhaps the most talented musician within our circle (though we’d never tell him that), has been writing music since his early school days, and has recently done a degree in producing so I’m sure you’ll be hearing loads more of what he has to offer soon.
What’s the best piece of advice you have received?
Play every show as if it’s the pyramid stage at Glastonbury.
Did you buy anything you don’t need in the pandemic? If so what?
Absolutely! I (Dylan) bought a guitar that I used once, decided I really didn’t get on with it, and then it never got played again, turned out to be a massive waste of money. But didn’t we all waste money on trying to stay sane. M.O.T also came out of the pandemic suddenly riding a (small) motorcycle. Which as much as he will tell you it was the best purchase he has ever made, we all know he’s lying. Liam is a serial, buyer of a car, then no longer want the car, sell that car, buy another car-er. Which means that Liam managed to have 4 or 5 different cars since the start of the pandemic. Anthony will absolutely never spend money if he doesn’t have to, besides when he’s making large quantity purchases of pizza and sweets. And Alef… well Alef bought a clone outfit, and turned up one day looking exactly like Anthony… we’ll say no more.
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories?
Can’t say we are massive conspiracy theorists. I spent most of lockdown unfriending rather extreme conspiracy theorists due to some hilariously, outrageous accusations.
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
That’ll have to be our first gig back after lockdown had eased. We played a sold out, hometown show at the Bunkhouse in Swansea. That has got to be one of the best atmospheres that we have ever felt and we loved every single minute.
What was the worst experience on stage?
It worked out fine in the end, but we played a show in Southampton, and M.O.T’s guitar rig just completely stopped working, and it took 3 different people just to get some sound coming from him. Whilst the rest of us just tried to continue the set until he could join in again.
Tell us something about each member that you think people would be surprised about?
Anthony – Absolutely despises potatoes. No idea why, but the thought of them turns him sick.
Dylan – Gets given the nickname of Anne Frank, because he’s the one with the diary.
M.O.T – His real name is Tom, but on his first day in the band we decided that we knew too many Tom’s so we needed to call him something else. We flipped his name backwards and thus we have M.O.T.
Alef – On the same day Alef claimed that he could sleep anywhere besides his own bed, he was snoring up against the window of the car on the drive home.
Liam – Drives HGV’s and other large vehicles for a living, but still can’t parallel park.
Tell us a funny story from backstage?
It’s a very hot 2019 summer. We are playing a festival in Herefordshire at about 10pm that evening. They supply us with free beer. Let’s just say, we had a band member sitting in a large bin, we had another two on a neighboring gardens’ trampoline, and we still managed to get through our set. Even though none of us can remember how.
Which one of the band is the most unpredictable and why?
That’s definitely got to be Anthony. When a breakdown in our song hits you don’t know where he’s going to end up. He’s both jumped, and fallen off stages. Jumped off bars, taken out band members, and audience members. He’s landed on his head, he now and then even lands on his feet. But the man loves what he does, and you won’t be able to keep your eyes off him.
Which one of the band is the biggest nightmare? (Just a bit of fun)
Dylan, will be the first to admit that if things don’t go exactly to plan, he will be the most stressed person in the world, which does lead to some frustration.
You have one phone call and you have been locked up for a crime you didn’t commit? Which member would you call first?
Gotta be M.O.T, that man would do anything for the ones he loves, and would stop at nothing to clear your name.
Tell us about a time when you had a proper reyt laugh while you were all together?
The story that pops into my mind for this is that when we were staying in one hotel, Anthony had purchased a tray of drinks and had taken them back to the room. The following morning, we were making our way to the reception area to check out, we didn’t wait for the lift and started walking down the stairs whilst Anthony and his tray or glasses made his way into the lift. All of a sudden, a massive crash of smashing glasses. Safe to say, we walked rather fast and pretended that we didn’t know him.
What’s your favourite song to play live and why?
It’s got to be Sociopath. We always end our set with it, we always end up in the crowd for it, and we give it everything that we’ve got left in the tank for that final breakdown.
I hear you have a new single brewing, what can you tell us about it?
We have just released “Something Greater”, which has been our baby since mid-way through the pandemic, but we are also sitting on one or two, mostly, recorded tracks, that just need some finishing touches. So it won’t be long and we will have the next stage in our evolution ready for your ears.
Talk me through the thought process of the single/album?
The process of recording our most recent single, Something Greater, was probably the most inclusive and enjoyable process we have used yet. It evolved so many times, and it seemed like each week we were taking the song in another direction. But it was great fun to play around with some new ideas, and after spending so much time a part, it was great to be writing and recording together again.
What was the recording process like?
The recording process was done in stages. First a demo, then a second demo because we decided we didn’t like the first one. Then, our good friend CC allowed us his drum recording space in order to start actually laying down the track. We recorded everything, excluding drums, ourselves in Alef’s home studio which was a great experience in itself because it created a much more laid back and exclusive environment where we could just mold the track into what we wanted it to be without many external or interfering factors.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the single/album?
That we don’t have to be satisfied with the first draft. One particular line of the song was about four times, including changing vocal melodies, drum beats, stops, no stops, etc. But each week we tried something else until we were actually happy with it.
Would you change anything now its finished?
I don’t think so, I think that we tried out most of the possible differences that we could have included and came out with a track that we are really proud of.
What are your plans for the year ahead?
Play to as many new people as possible, release a few singles, and have a great time doing what we love to do.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
Keep an eye on our socials, we’ve always got something happening, whether it’s a new track, or maybe we are playing in your local city/town. It would be great to meet as many of you as possible, and we hope you enjoy our latest track, Something Greater.
Thanks for doing us today folks, all the best and keep in touch.