You can put lipstick on a pig…

There is background noise. It growls and hisses, it beats like a heart hidden underneath gravel. A kind of awkward guilt, heavy and light with each change of weather.

This is the news, then. Problem number one could live with me for ever even if I never write down my feelings in a diary ever again. Another issue flickers around me like distant fairy lights, a heat behind the soul, tiny pecks of heat in the mind. It is what happens when the pull of the tide becomes too strong. And the “tug of war” between head and heart grows too difficult.

Escape is just not possible. Mostly for reasons financial. I just cannot take flight without those darned invisible strings pulling me back…

The pages of my personal history remain cold and empty, dead leaves to be sewn into my flesh.

Q&A – House On Fire

Obvious one first, really. Why did you enter BOTB – what did you hope to get out of the contest, and have you enjoyed your heats?
Yeah, the heats have been wicked. We entered because we needed to play some more gigs as we only became a gigging band as of April this year!

For those in the audience who may not know you that well, how would you describe your band and the music?
The loudest three piece you’ll probably (maybe) ever hear. Rocking tunes, sing along choruses and catchy hooks.

How do you tend to practice and write songs – every waking hour or as-and-when?We write and practice when we’re together. twice a week usually.

So you’re stuck in a lift for an hour. How do spend the time before help arrives?Russian roulette.

Do you tend to keep your influences close or separate from the music you’re writing at the moment? How have your influences shaped your current set?
Fairly close to some of the songs – Foo Fighters play a big influence in this band, as does Clutch, but we definately try to inject a hint of originality in our tunes.

This contest is one of the many gigs going on in Preston – what are your opinions of the scene we have here? Would you spend more or less time gigging here after your experiences at the BOTB?
The scene at the moment is great – Ed at Hedmag does a top job booking cool out of town bands and I just think it needs a little kick up the arse to get back in gear again. Due to circumstances we won’t be gigging as much but we will still be around with an album coming out at the end of the year… hopefully.

Where’s the best place to get a drink round here, anyway?
Rob Clarke’s house.

If you had the chance to put on a gig with a local band and one of your favourite all-time groups, who you would choose, and why?
I would get every decent guitar player to pal up and do an acoustic set supporting the Dave Matthews Band. No reason other than that it would be awesome.

Win or lose the BOTB final, where you going to be this time next year?
Outer space.

Q&A – You Will Fail

Obvious one first, really. Why did you enter BOTB – what did you hope to get out of the contest, and have you enjoyed your heats?
At first we saw the competition as a great opportunity to get our music out to a wider audience within our home city, but it soon dawned on us that we were really just doing it as an excuse to get rendered, like all the other gigs we play! We had a great time and forged some great friendships and we’re sure the final will be no different! We’ve nailed the drummer to his kit, so he’s going nowhere this time…

For those in the audience who may not know you that well, how would you describe your band and the music?
We are four hairy friends who play hard metal, and play it loud! Featuring Welly Grosvenor on vocals and rhythm, Sam Frank on lead, backing vocals and keys, Jonny RAW on bass, and Jay Ward on drums we’re generally up for a laugh, and as long as we try our best to make the audience shake their heads and behinds along to our tunes we’re a happy bunch of ‘Failers’!

How you tend to practice and write songs – every waking hour or as-and-when?
Most of the time one of us will have an idea for a song, riff, melody, or theme while going about our lives, and we’ll get together at a jam and work on it, all with equal say in every aspect of the song. If one of us doesn’t like something, we take it out of our set and work on it until we’re all fully behind it. This way we tend to end up gigging material we’re all proud of, and often for very different reasons. Saying that, there are other times when we just get on one and busk it!

So you’re stuck in a lift for an hour. How do spend the time before help arrives?
We’d amuse ourselves by making jokes at each others expense, which is what we always do if we get together in the same space for more than five minutes! Then we’d probably re-enact a donkey show, or wrestle naked.

Do you tend to keep your influences close or separate from the music you’re writing at the moment? How have your influences shaped your current set?
Half of our number were dragged up in Scotland on a diet of folk, Irn Bru, and Whiskey, so there are strong Celtic undercurrents running through some of our songs, but we obviously take our main influences from all the varied and tasty flavours of metal we each consume.

This contest is one of the many gigs going on in Preston – what are your opinions of the scene we have here? Would you spend more or less time gigging here after your experiences at the BOTB?
The Preston live music scene (especially for metal bands) has had to ride the waves of some massive shake-ups within some of the main venues this year. Our roots were planted in Preston, so we’ll always play here whenever we’re wanted, and times when we’re not!

Where’s the best place to get a drink round here, anyway?
Apart from strangers’ tables when they nip to the bogs, the nearest bar tends to be the best place, there’s The Old Dog on Church Street that’s open after The Venue closes, so that’s probably where we’ll be heading at the end of the night to keep the party going, come what may!

If you had the chance to put on a gig with a local band and one of your favourite all-time groups, who you would choose, and why?
Locally it would have to be the mighty Freakjesus (last year’s deserved BOTB winners), and I’m sure both our bands could be tempted to gig with the legends that are Metallica, you know, if the opportunity arose.

Win or lose the BOTB final, where you going to be this time next year?
As soon as we have a professional studio demo under our belts, we’re looking to gig all over, spreading the Fail everywhere, and doing our best to attract more attention to the awesome bands, fans and venues that exist here in Preston! We will make this occur whatever happens on the fifth, one path will just take us longer!