Before Covid-19 had come along, I’ve had several interviews I’ve yet to post. These guys were one of the bands early on to agree to an interview so finally here it is:
Q: Tell me a little bit about the band? How long have you been together.
A: The band was formed in Swindon, England in the Fall of 2018. The current lineup consists of Jordan Wheeler (bass), Joe Arthur (drums), Dave Aldous (vocals/guitar) and Jake O’Brien (lead guitar). We spent our first year together developing our unique style. We all began with a very diverse range of musical influences. An overlap in our individual moulded the Pretty Vacant sound. The band initially started with Dave and Jake jamming cover songs, we’d play things like Nirvana and RHCP with the intention of eventually writing original material. It wasn’t until Joe joined the band, that we started creating original material. Soon after, Jordan joined, completing the line-up and adding another layer of unique influence integral to our sound. In Spring 2019, we began recording demo tracks, Starlight and Whiplash, these were then released in the summer of 2019 and were used to aid in the booking of our first gig as a band.
Q: Playing gig after gig can take a toll on you & be very grueling…on average how many shows does the band play a week?
A: We gig as often as we can and take every opportunity that comes our way. We have a passion for live music and have a love for playing live gigs, we never find it a chore! We all regularly attend live music events ourselves, it’s something we enjoy whether we’re on or off stage, there’s something about the people and atmosphere that surrounds live music that makes it all worthwhile.
Q: What place would be your dream venue to play and why?
A: We’d have to say Red Rocks in Colorado, simply because it’s an incredible venue, it’s definitely up there with some of the most beautiful venues around the world! In terms of U.K. venues, it would have to be Alexandra Palace, London, we’ve seen some great bands there ourselves and it always has an amazing atmosphere.
Q: If you guys weren’t musicians, what would you be doing right now?
A: We all have 9 – 5s alongside the band, in an ideal world, we’d love to be able to commit to our music full time, we’re passionate about creating music and dedicate all of our spare time to the band, whether it’s writing, rehearsing or playing gigs. If we weren’t musicians, we’d definitely have to get our creative fix some other way, through other artistic endeavors. We would definitely want to be part of the local music scene in some other way!
Q: What bands/artists would you love to collaborate with?
A: We have a very diverse taste in music as a band, we draw most of our inspiration from bands like, RHCP, Led Zeppelin and The Foals. We also take a lot of our punchy energy from punk bands like Idles and Slaves. In terms of collaboration, we’d love to collaborate with a brass band or orchestra in the future, the huge sound they are able to achieve is just unparalleled.
Q: Let’s talk about your single, Whiplash…. what is the song about and what process goes into writing songs for the band?
A: Well, lyrically, Whiplash is very subjective and following on from our last answer, it’s style draws largely from our influences like Arctic Monkeys’ lyricist Alex Turner and Anthony Kiedis, of RHCP. In terms of our writing process, we usually start with a riff or hook, once we have something solid, we jam around with it until we have the foundations of a song, this is evident in the bass intro of Whiplash!
Q: You have another single Starlight, do you think you will finish a full- length album inn2020 or maybe an EP?
A: We’re actually in the process of writing and recording our debut album. The working title is currently, “Pretty Vacant Penthouse Basement”, with a pencilled in release date of Fall/Winter 2020. We’ve been working on it for some time and hope to have it finished very soon, we really want to portray our absolute best, so it’s something we’ve been really taking our time with.
Q: What artists are you excited about these days?
A: We’re really excited for Tame Impala, Thee Oh Sees, Idles, The Strokes, Slaves and Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever. We’re also looking forward to hearing more from some great local bands like YVES, who have recently made a return under the name of The New Black and ska bands like Slagerji, both incredible bands that are well worth checking out.
Q: What does the future have in store for Pretty Vacant?
A: More gigs, more music, more funk, more punk.
Pretty Vacant is currently at home with the rest of the world as we hope to find a cure for Covid-19. They will be working on that album that they hope to have released sometime by the Fall/Winter.
You can check out their music at Pretty Vacant’s music and find also on Spotify.
Until next time, I’m Your Music Stylist – Linda Dias