We spoke to One Million Motors, a quartet from Newcastle, England! Their members consist of;
- John – Vocals / Guitar
- Mick – Guitar / Vocals
- James – Bass / Vocals
- Lauro – Drums / Vocals
*All questions answered by James.
1. Let’s kick start! The Loudest Sounds EP has been out 3/4 of a year now! How has the reception been for this 4 track record?
Oh wow! ¾’s of a year already?! They grow up so fast. Honestly, it’s been great! Unfortunately, we
didn’t get a chance to tour the EP up and down the country and hear the rapturous applause. We
did, however, get some great write ups from various blogs. BBC Introducing North East was kind
and played almost every song. We even got some love from overseas, like Israel and Australia. So
yeah, all in all, it’s been better than we could have hoped for really.
2. You will be playing a live gig on October 11th! In the Covid era, crazy!
That’s right! A gig in a post CO-VID world. The excellent promotor Little Buildings and quality Tynebank Brewery have been putting on socially distant shows throughout September, that have been extremely successful in terms of starting up the Newcastle music scene again and keeping audiences safe. We have been honoured to be asked to be a part of these shows and are extremely excited to perform live once more! If people come along, they might even hear some new songs…but we can’t promise you anything.
3. What inspired the lyrics to TLS?
I always try to be honest with any lyrics I write, so they’re usually inspired by stuff that’s actually
happened or just about my love affair with playing music.
4. Can you tell us an interesting fact about the EP?
Would you ask a parent to say something weird about their baby? Oh you would? Alright then.
Well, an interesting fact about TLS is that it bridges a gap between the first phase of OMM and
OMM 2.0. At the start of 2019, we parted ways with our original drummer and found ourselves a
little deflated with the audition process. Thankfully Lauro stepped in and we began working on new
songs immediately. TLS is the result of melding the two eras together; the first phase (Former
Glories and B-Movie) and 2.0 (Mistakes and We Came To Live). If anything, it serves as a
historical document of early OMM and how we’ve developed and grown in the last two years. It
feels like a departure now as ‘post CO-VID’ OMM seems like a new phase. Oh my god, maybe
post-CO-VID will become a new genre. That’d be something.
5. My favourite track is ‘Mistakes’. Can you tell me a little more about this track? Also, what is your favourite?
Mistakes is my favourite too! Essentially it’s about being young and enjoying yourself without
realising that stuff you do can have consequences. I don’t necessarily have any regrets, but it’s
good to put those kinds of things into perspective.
6. Were there any artists or albums that inspired this album in particular?
One of the things that makes One Million Motors what it is, is the combination of our musical
tastes. We’re all fans of punk music; old and new. That definitely comes across on the EP, but I
would say that our individual punk influences shine through on TLS. John is all about those singer-
songwriter troubadours like Dave Hause and Mick loves the fury Stiff Little FIngers but the
complexity and shimmering of The Cure. I definitely channeled Blink 182 and London Calling-era
Clash, while Lauro just oozed classic garage sleaze on the drums, like Stooges and such. Overall,
we wanted the EP to sound similar to that Gaslight Anthem ‘Americana punk’ of ‘American Slang’,
with the buzzsaw sound of Against Me’s ‘Transgender Dysophria Blues’. I don’t know if we
achieved that but we certainly made more of a celebration of different genres of punk; in our own
7. Can you share your funniest gig story with us? We know it’s always a fun time in Geordie land!
Yup, Geordie land never fails to entertain! I’ve actually got two stories. To allude to the North East for a moment, the first one was a while back when we supported Crazy Arm in the sorely missed Maze in Nottingham. During our set, we had an absolute weekend warrior that decided to pull up a chair right in front of Mick proceed to try to get his attention by shouting nonsense at him and occasionally fist bumping him between chords. I was in pieces on the other side of the stage! He was eventually escorted out by the venue team but the image of him walking out and giving a thumbs up tickles me to this day. Back in Geordie Land, we played a show down the road in South Shields that took place in a 70’s rock music themed bar. For some reason, the promoter thought it was necessary to introduce us to the 6 people in the room (it was a Saturday afternoon I think?). We got introduced as ‘One Million Miles’, which not only cracked us up, but also made us sound like a Proclaimers tribute act. We were then also told that the bartender ‘may have to walk through you while you play to change the keg in the back room’… which she did. A few times. Bit of shit show really haha.
8. Who has the worst tattoo?
I’m not going to say who…it’s a closely guarded secret you know? But, right, so one of us has a
Frank Turner lyric tattooed on us; ‘Life is about love, last minutes and lost evenings’ – from a great
song and a great album. That’s not the bad part. The bad part comes in it’s creation. So the concept of the tattoo was dreamed up by hazy and drunken conversations with a current (now ex)
girlfriend. Great start. Well, they broke up and the lad was so upset that he went and got this tattoo
anyway. A nice constant reminder of that failure. It’s not even straight on the body and it almost
had a spelling error in it; thankfully the tattooist caught it at the literal last second before the needle
hit the skin. It was almost ‘Life is about LIFE, last minutes and lost evenings.’ What would that even
9. What’s been the biggest challenge in your musical career so far?
I think we’ve all had our individual challenges in our personal musical journey. Before the world
blew up and as a group, I would say searching for another drummer and having the motivation to
continue was particularly challenging. Glad we preserved though as some of the best OMM
moments have been from that point onwards. But let’s be honest, it’s the CO-VID pandemic that
has proved the biggest challenge to us. To begin with, we had to cancel gigs, we couldn’t tour our
EP and we couldn’t practice as a band. We adapted and collaborated on acoustic projects just to
bide our time, but it wasn’t the same. The biggest challenge for the future is the next 6 months. The
government seems to have completely left the music industry to die in the gutter and it’s up to
musicians and music lovers alike to step up and demand action and vengeance against BoJo’s
disregard for one of the UK’s most profitable sectors. Instead of telling us what to do, musicians
should be collaborated with. Social distanced shows can operate safely. Musicians are in the wings
waiting. We’re raring to go.
10. Please, leave a message for the readers!
Stay safe out there true believers; wear masks and social distance where possible. We are all in
this together. Never Surrender. We love you.