Interview – Without Andrew

Without Andrew are from Manchester, UK. Their members are;

  • Sam Robertson
  • Danneh Gleave
  • Monique Tallow
  • Mat Buckley


1. ‘Find A Way’ came out on the 29th November, are you happy with how it has performed? Has it exceeded expectations?

Mat: FAW has done quite well and I’m very happy of what it has achieved, especially in this day and age of over saturation in the music market, there’s so much for people to listen to and it’s hard for a small band to grab a lot of attention but with 2,000+ streams in the first four days, I’ll take it.

Monique: I was genuinely surprised by how many streams it got within the first two days, I didn’t think people cared that much haha.

Danneh:  I’m really happy with Find a way, it has one of my favourite bass lines I’ve written in my time in the band and the raw punk aggressive sound really captures our live sound which may have been lost a little in previous production! I still can’t believe how great the song was received and can’t wait for people to hear what we have prepared next.

2. What inspired the lyrics to ‘Find A Way’?

Mat: The lyrics to FAW have been heavily inspired by a lot of the ignorance and anger towards each other in the recent years since the election of Trump and also the social awareness of people like Tommy Robinson and Boris Johnson who are amassing large amounts of followers who fully believe that their racism and bigotry is justified by the warped views of these powerful men.

3. We can assume this is the lead single to a new album, what can fans expect from the rest of the album?

Sam: I think that fans can expect for us to be up to our old tricks and branching out through different styles of music quite a lot like our previous album ‘Dead on Arrival’ but not just sticking to those same genres.

Danneh: I’d say fans can expect something for everyone across the new album, having four minds that listen to different genres and fusing them when writing gives us a big range across our music from aggressive punk to, ska and pop punk or emo ballads we’ve definitely got something for everyone to enjoy.

Mat: This album, for me, is feeling like quintessential Without Andrew album – it has some slightly less serious songs on it, more akin to our first album, it’s got some darker songs alá Dead On Arrival and we’ve even started to reach some more punkier roots and heavier styles on this album.

4. What has been the most surreal moment of your musical careers so far?

Danneh: Most surreal moment… probably going on tour with ashestoangels in 2019 being a band that I’ve opened for and worked my way up to main support previously in my old band, being able to coheadline a tour with them was like a dream come true for my little emo self.

Sam: For me I think it has to be going back coming close to eight years ago when I was first starting to learn to play guitar, two weeks in I get a phone call from Mat asking me to fill in and play a set with his band. Well two weeks and twenty-two songs later that happened and the rest is history.

Mo: Having my other bands EP being sold in HMV. I remember they even played the CD in store just after we stocked it and we were freaking out, we got a lot of weird looks.

Mat: For me, it has to be Danny Farrant of the Buzzcocks digging our very first ever release, which you can’t find online anymore, it was mind blowing.

5. Was there a song/artist in particular that inspired you to write FAW?

Danneh: In the bass parts I wrote I was fully channelling my anti-flag, I imagine Mat was feeling the same.

Mat: I was very lyrically inspired by Anti-Flag and Pennywise, getting into those bands, especially the former has been a game changer for me.

6. What has been your biggest challenge so far?

Danneh: The biggest challenge I think we’ve faced was losing (previous guitarist) Tom and finding someone to be the right fit working with us, it took us some time but now we have Monique and it’s great to be doing some new things again.

Mo: Attempting to write a minute long solo for the new album, I still have nightmares about it.

Sam: I think referring to a previous answer would be the fact of having to learn twenty-two songs within a month of starting to learn guitar is one of the biggest challenges I have faced in the band so far.

Mat: Taking ourselves down a more DIY route in which we do about 99% of the stuff to do with the band ourselves, it isn’t easy but it makes everything feel all the more satisfying knowing we did this on our own.

7. Out of everything you have released, what has been your favourite song?

Sam: My personal favourite song out of the all that we have released has probably got to be ‘I Want To Be Human’ for the simple reasons that it was one of the first songs that we started to write whilst in the practice room jamming out and the fact that it was featured in a video game.

Danneh: That’s a difficult question but I think my favourite track is probably ‘I Disappear’, I just connect with the lyrics a lot and it really hits hard for me, close seconds would be ‘FYYAR’ and ‘Devil’.

Mat: For me it has to be ‘Fuck You! You’re A Racist’, purely because that song took off crazy compared to anything we had done – we had people from America listening to it, it was being played at anti-trump rallies we had people singing the words back at us on tour just a few weeks after it came out, very surreal. 

8. What was your first gig experience like?

Mat: If we are talking WA show, it was a mixture of nerves and excitement! I remember playing every song way too fast and not being able to see cause of the lights, but bar that – a blur!

Sam: My first time was quite nerve wracking to be honest, from being clueless what to actually do to having no idea how it would go and if they would like it.

Danneh: That’s a weird one for me all my first gigs were filling in on a temporary basis whilst they looked for a new bassist, until I was asked mid gig in front of the audience to join the band that was pretty hilarious, these guys have become looks family since.

Mo: Anxiety filled. I’m a late bloomer, I played my first ever gig at the start of 2019 so it’s still new and scary to me. 

9. How did you get your name ‘Without Andrew’?

Mat: If we told you that, we’d have to kill you.

Danneh: It took me like 2 years before they’d even tell me the real story, all I got before that point was talk about wizards and dragons and adventures.

10. Who has the worst dress sense?

Mat: I’ve not seen any socks with sandals so I’m happy to report we all pretty snazzy.

Danneh: I’m not gonna answer that I don’t want to be beaten.

Mo: I’ll just say that I have the best dress sense so those three can fight it out for themselves.

11. What’s your funniest show story?

Mat: whenever I’m asked this question I always draw a blank! But something that always makes me laugh: we were playing a show in Manchester, the promoter told us we had 2mins left until they pulled the power, so we decided to play Jesus Of Suburbia by Green Day, all 9mins of it, without getting the power pulled! Impressive and stupid haha!

Danneh: Funniest memory is probably the time we supported ‘Padding Needed’ and they brought loads of pillows out and told us to have a pillow fight mosh pit, we went wild and Mat accidentally punched me in the face after missing with the pillow and following through that was hilarious!

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

Mat: Look after my family. Invest. Donate to charity. Get a house big enough to practice in. Then just focus on the music! 

Mo: Quit my job.

Danneh: Get a House, build a recording studio, get fully covered in tattoos and spend all my time recording.

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