Band Q&A – Melwood

Melwood are based in Liverpool, UK! Their members consist of;

  • Tom Shortell – Vocals
  • Eddie Edwards – Guitar
  • Josh McShane – Guitar
  • Nathan Morton-Woods – Bass
  • Benny Hoggarth – Drums

1. Who are your top 3 influences?

Tom – The music I’ve always taken huge drive from have been bands I started listening to when I was first introduced to this genre and are still listening to now. So, for me, for they are; You Me At Six, The 1975 & can an instrumental band be influenced? If so! Explosions In The Sky.

Benny – Animals as leaders, neck deep, meshuggah.

Nathan – Modern Baseball, Copeland & The Beatles

2. How did you get your band name? Is it anything to do with living in Liverpool?

Josh – Originally the band was called Evergreen when it first started when it was just me, Tom & Benny, when we decided to start to take it a bit more seriously we decided we needed a bit more of a serious name, the name was originally Melwood Drive but it didn’t seem to work or fit with the music that we were writing and since me and Tom are massive Liverpool fans we wanted to get something to do with Liverpool in the name, with Melwood being Liverpool’s training ground.

Benny – Don’t ask haha.

Nathan – Liverpool’s training ground / also pisses off benny.

3. You finished tour with Evertim not long ago. How was this tour? What was your favourite venue?

Tom – Tour was amazing. We managed to get over 30 people in a. room in Camden on our first show in London, then smash Brighton too for the first time. It was incredible! Liverpool & Manchester are always kind too us and ending in Hull with a stunning venue was absolutely amazing. So happy with the run all together! Can’t wait for our run with Evade Escape in November

4. What is your song-writing process?

Tom – The process of writing really comes in an ad hoc fashion. Lyrically my ideas stem from smaller aspects that I’ve come across. I could be watching a movie and one specific scene could have a certain mood that speaks to me. Genre wise I can take mass inspiration from synth pop and poetry. Both very different effectiveness but they all seem to take their toll. In terms of writing.

Eddie – This can work in so many ways to be honest, but I think we’re looking to get back in a practise room now we have finished tour and write songs by jamming them out rather than jumping into pre-production. Then we get a better chance of us all picking up the same vibes and throw in cool ideas on the fly. We’d take it into pre-production after then probably reassess the arrangement! But that’s always part of the fun when you hear it start coming together and having an opportunity to really see what’s working, musically and lyrically.

5. What do you hope to have achieved a year from now?

Tom – Honestly, I think 2020 will be big for us, we’ve spent the majority of 2019 touring, recording and writing. Nothing has been released this year for us but now that everything is set into plan next year should hopefully see us go somewhere. I’d say touring Europe supporting a band that we have known of for years and loved and playing in front of big crowds. Dream.

Nathan – Tour Europe & hopefully will have a rig by then xxxxxx

Eddie – I’m hoping to have a nice long Europe tour or two in the bag by then and also to have the record out and hopefully people really connecting with the music.

6. What was Melwood’s first gig experience like?

Tom – Our first show we played Subside in Birmingham on our debut tour with Layover. It was interesting because of the nervousness now I’ve never played a show let alone sing in front of a room full of people but my god it was nerve racking, however getting past the set and hearing how well we’d done from so many random people, I’d say that was a success to us all. Then we sold out Liverpool the next day, don’t even want to go into how speechless I was after that!

Josh – The first ever gig we played was on a co-headline tour with Layover and it was in Subside in Birmingham, to be fair it was actually sick, it was the first time we had a van, merch a TM (god bless Mark) it just felt like we were a real band and we all and a boss, people seemed to be into it, no one got bottled and literally nothing went wrong, so that’s a success for me.

Nathan – First gig was at Subside in Birmingham, not a great crowd but christ did we have fun, our whole first tour was sick especially our sold out Liverpool show had the whole room bouncing.

7. Biggest challenge so far?

Tom – Momentum. I think that is key to holding up in the industry and with the changes that we have had and problems that occurred just after our first tour I thought there wasn’t a comeback from us at all. Our lead guitarist left after the Layover tour with no bad blood, but we were stuck in a rut. Tried out numerous people and we lined up with Eddie. He’s been an angel, took the band into new direction and he is one of the best musicians I have been around, as well as a brother to me.

Josh – To be honest, we’ve been super lucky since day one, literally the end of the Layover co-headline we got picked up by our manager Alex from Perspective Management who’s literally sorted our arses out and made sure we’re doing as well as we can be, so we haven’t had that many challenges really! I also feel absolutely blessed to have the crew we have behind the scenes making our life easier day in day out!

Benny – Honestly getting to where we are now.

Nathan – Organising myself and pushing myself to keep putting effort into what I do, balancing uni and other stuff is hard.

8. Your release of ‘Wither’ has performed really well. When will we hear more music?

Tom – It took us a long time to write and release Wither but eventually when it was released it went great. We were shocked at the start because people had really taken to our debut single, however it sort of died off because there was no real follow up which was a shame to us due to the changes but hopefully it’s all worth the wait for what is next!

Nathan – we’ve recorded a few tracks at the beginning of this year, so keep your ears open, won’t be too long!

9. Favourite thing about performing?

Tom – Energy all the way. I was so new to performing and all that jazz before this but once everything is set up before a show and you are ready, my nerves kick in because it’s pretty much 5 minutes before our set time and I want to throw up. But, once I sing the first line of our opening track, I am fine and from then everything just builds and builds until you realise you’re in the crowd or going mad. It’s all worth the stress. As well as seeing people smile watching us, that is beyond belief happiness. Wouldn’t trade that for anything (Until maybe someone sings the words back)

Josh – BIG. S P I N S.

Benny – For me it’s the feeling before I get on stage, the adrenaline, the excitement. love it all.

Eddie – Just losing yourself to the music a bit and forgetting you’re actually on stage

10. What inspired the lyrics to ‘Wither’?

Josh – I haven’t got a jar of glue, I’ve never actually asked Tom in all honesty, Tom what inspired you?

Tom – Wither, being the first track we sat down and produced with the studio was a real connection towards real life writers block, as well as having issues in personal life that began to detour what I wanted to do with my life, everything was holding me back. But this song was an escape route to get out of the mindset of a wall in front of me, and I said to myself every time I sing the chorus, I am another step away from being released from all the self-doubt that was inside. This song also sparked from when we first started out and had a totally different sound and direction we wanted to go in, so I initially thought in that moment to write about what exactly was going on – were struggling to write and the personal aspects were playing a big part on it.

11. What do you all do when you’re not musically involved?

Josh – When I’m not in uni, working or doing band stuff me and the boys just meet up in town go for drinks, go shisha, go play pool. Just like generally hang out, we’re never too far away from each other in all honesty.

Benny – Work and… bevvie.

Nathan – I Study photography so spend a lot of time exploring different areas & shooting bands. Also spend far too much time cycling – was a hobby however I’m now a professional Deliveroo xo

12. Where is your dream place to tour?

Tom – Has to be the states, 100%. Playing New York would be the pinnacle of the term “made it” in my eyes. Hearing stories of the crowds and their ambition and drive towards this genre is more than enough for me to have some wishful thinking on this, New York all the way.

Josh – Japan. Literally been in love with that place forever, I could just imagine it being incredible! If not there though, it’s got to be America!

Nathan – Europe!! – have heard so much about how well bands are treated and respected over there, and would also love to experience overseas culture.

13. Who has the worst dress sense?

Tom – I don’t entirely know how to answer this because everyone dresses miraculously different to each other, I’d say not worst but the most different would be Nath, he had an outfit on not that long ago and he honestly look like a beautiful bowling champion. He has an abstract taste in colour, especially socks that I absolutely adore.

Benny – Sorry Ed hahaha.

Eddie – Definitely me, the other boys are super trendy. I don’t have a clue.

14. Funniest show story?

Tom – I think it’s when we played Barnsley on our tour with RCKLSS back in April. When we sound checked the West Ham and Manchester United game was playing in a huge screen behind us, geezers everywhere. That slowly became fine until our hero Jordan asked in regard to our rider for the show, came back with A 400 TICKET BINGO BOOKLET and all he said was “Your drinks are paid for tonight” and that was it. There is too much to describe and say what even happened that night because we were that blind drunk but I can solemnly say that we are sorry to the venue for losing you a lot of money. You will forever be in our hearts, and livers.

Josh – For me it’s either the countless times I’ve fell over or off stage doing something dumb or, the second show I had IEM’s I did a big spin and the pack on my belt flew off stage and almost hit Victory Lanes drummer in the face, sorry Lew.

Eddie – Barnsley + unlimited free drink tickets = chaos

15. Pizza! What do you have?

Tom – Aye I miss pizza not going to lie. I haven’t eaten one in a long time, but it must be meat feast all the way, sorry pineapple lovers but I really can’t do it!

Josh – BBQ base and chicken, do you need anything else?

Nathan – pineapple/cheeeeeese (lit anything without meat)

Eddie – stuffed crust margarita or vegetarian from the boys over at Nabsy’s. They know what’s up.

16. Who’s the most annoying member?

Josh – I feel like it’s me since none of the boys actually annoy me, unless Benny is sat behind me in the van and he’s pulling my hood or some shit, that makes me want to throw him onto the M6.

Nathan – me – will forget most things.

Eddie – I think we all push our luck haha. We’re not the most graceful of drunks.

17. Who has the worst tattoo?

Josh – It’s got to be Ed he literally has “go to bed” or “go to sleep” slap bang in the middle of his chest.

Benny – Nathan’s switchblade on his arm hahaha. It’s just you know… bad.

Nathan – SWITCHBLADE ON MY ELBOW (safety activated by folding arm).

Tom – Nath said it before I could, sorry switchblade!

Eddie – Either Josh or me? Think he’s got one that’s a bit daft if I remember. I’ve got some shockers though. Ex-gf’s name and what not.

18. Fast forward and you’re millionaires. What do you do with the money?

Tom – Get my own studio, 10000000%.

Josh – Obviously get a fat gaff with all the guitars and everything.

Benny – Invest and make more money haha.

Nathan – Lifetime supply of pipeline punch, might buy a new bass at some point though.

Eddie – It literally has to go to Charity or I’m dead in a few days.

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