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22nd February 2016
METAL DISCOVERY: The title track has been featured in a short film called ‘Eat’, I gather, and I saw there was a sold out screening which forced a cinema to move the new ‘Star Wars’ movie to a smaller screen?
NICK: Yeah, that was unexpected because we did this on the peripheral of… we were doing a whole bunch of stuff at the time and, so, we just sort of did it and then didn’t think about it. Then, when it got released… it’s been nominated for the London Short Film Festival as well. It’s directed by Carl Shanahan and he’s known the band since the very early days.
(Nick Magee on Sanguine's wide appeal)
"...we’ve got people who actually come up to us and say, “I don’t listen to metal but I listen to you.” That’s one of the coolest things…"
Sanguine - promo shot
Interview by Mark Holmes
Photograph copyright © 2013 Uncredited
Official Sanguine Website:
Sanguine (2012)
Thanks to Alison Bateman for arranging the interview.
Official Sanguine Twitter:
Official Sanguine Facebook:
Black Sheep (2016)
TARIN: He’s done a lot of our videos.
NICK: He’s done a lot of our videos, yeah.
TARIN: He’s part of the team.
NICK: Yeah, he’s been part of the visual side of the band for years. So, he’s moving into film…
TARIN: This was his first attempt.
NICK: Yeah, and he’s knocked it out the park, you know. Tarin and I actually helped make the film, as well. Tarin was the art director and I was the visual producer. I don’t think we see ourselves, in any way, as filmmakers, but it’s part of the wider visual art, which encompasses filmmaking as part of that. We just ended up with the short film festival thing going on and we’re like, “shit, how did this work?!” There was no context, you know, because we just came into it as two people who like to do stuff, and like to make videos and stuff. We’ve not had any formal training so we don’t know any of the terminology; it makes no sense! They’re like, “send for a dolly grip”… I’ll be like, “what the hell’s that?!”
NICK: So, we’re not great on set! [Laughs]
MD: How’s the music scene in Devon these days? I remember going to some shows, quite a few years ago, at the Cavern and Phoenix in Exeter, but it didn’t strike me being a city with a thriving music scene.
NICK: It kind of blows hot and cold. It’s going through a fairly good spell at the moment. We threw a party three days after Christmas, and it was really last minute because a publisher wanted to come down and see us and that was the only time they could do. They said, “look, if you put on a show, we’ll come down and see what’s happening and whether we’re going to work with you etc.” So, yeah, it was a bit of a last minute thing; we only had a couple of weeks to get it sorted. We were a bit nervous because it was such a short lead-in, but the place went absolutely apeshit.
MD: Oh, cool.
NICK: Yeah, it was cool… and we got the publishing deal! [Laughs]
MD: So, there’s a bit of a boom down in Exeter at the moment then?
TARIN: It’s kind of hard down here in Exeter because we don’t have any journalistic in-roads, as it were, whereas you might have that in Cardiff, London, Birmingham… places like that. But, you know, a scene’s only as good as the bands that are playing in it. There are some good bands and they go for a few years and then they learn how bloody hard it is, then they give up. So, these scenes are up and down. We’re just lucky we’ve got a really good home support.
NICK: Yeah, we’ve been really lucky so far. We’ve got a really loyal fanbase and we’ve always been able to maintain that. You know, numbers at gigs and all that type of stuff, without having to sweat too much.
TARIN: That’s because we’re making our own scene.
NICK: It’s non-exclusive actually, isn’t it. It’s really inclusive and it’s really broad. We’ve got punks at our shows; we’ve got black metallers at our shows; we’ve got people who actually come up to us and say, “I don’t listen to metal but I listen to you.” That’s one of the coolest things… the fact that they actually come down to a metal night and I think, sometimes, they actually feel a little bit out of their depth.
TARIN: They put on their black t-shirts.
NICK: Yeah, they always go: “Is this right? Do I look alright? I don’t stand out, do I?” We always go: “No. Seriously, this is mental!”
TARIN: Everyone’s got a dark side, haven’t they?
NICK: Yeah, I think that’s partly what we appeal to.
MD: That’s really cool. And I think that’s transcending genre right there; you know, when you get people from all kinds of scenes turning up as well as nondescript people from no scene in particular.
NICK: That’s right, yeah. I think we’re very changeable, because we change it up quite constantly… we do with our live stuff as well; we go through phases, I suppose. So, I think the audience come along with it and just ride along with us.
MD: You have some shows coming up as opening support on the Mushroomhead and American Head Charge tour next month. I guess it makes it quite a diverse billing with those two bands and yourselves, so will you see it as a challenge to try and win over fans of the headliners?
TARIN: If you look at the backgrounds of Mushroomhead and American Head Charge, they’re both massive Faith No More fans, so we reckon we’ll hit it off.
NICK: Mushroomhead are actually really diverse, man. They’re sort of in their own little world… they’re almost separate from the music industry in a way.
TARIN: They’re just doing their own thing.
NICK: Yeah, they’re completely doing their own thing.
MD: Do you know what, it’s a band I’ve not listened to for quite a few years, actually, but I remember them being diverse-ish back in the day. I’ll have to check ‘em out and see what they’re all about now.
TARIN: Check out ‘Qwerty’, it’s really cool. That’s a fun track and gives you an idea how diverse they can be. And we’re really excited because we’re massive fans of American Head Charge as well. We’re going to be playing our heavy stuff, and it’s going to be really fun and really cool.
NICK: American Head Charge is quite violent, isn’t it, and we’re planning on… when we play live, we sort of do a half and half; a mixture of the heavier and softer stuff. Sometimes, we do acoustic shows where we do full band acoustic shows, and then…
TARIN: I’m gonna give everyone a tip - if they want to come to our show, or come and see us at all, you know, it’s going to be amazing, but we’re gonna play ‘Bangkok Nights’ off the first album, which is this crazy track if you want to check it out, so learn the words and we’ll be doing it… [Laughs]
NICK: Yeah, it’s gonna be quite a high energy set for this one.
MD: Good stuff. So, the final thing I was going to ask then - what’s next after the March/April tour? You posted on Facebook a few days ago that you’ve been working on a top secret project…
NICK: This completely blew our minds, actually. We can’t say anything just yet. I literally want to tell everyone I meet, even random people who don’t know me, I want to stop and… “oh my god!” [Laughs]
MD: That exciting?!
NICK: Yeah! As a result of the album, it’s landed in someone’s lap, basically, and good things are happening as a result. And it’s the last person I would have expected, so there you go!
MD: So, we’re talking a biggish name, or a big name?
NICK: It’s more a name in the sort of… I really don’t know how to say this… there’s no way of saying it which isn’t going to… but, yeah, it’s going to be exciting, anyway.
MD: Watch this space, kind of thing.
NICK: Yeah, that’s it, the next chapter. Actually, there’s a whole bunch of stuff in the pipeline, so just keep watching. It’s coming thick and fast at the minute!
MD: Okay, right, cheers very much for your time, both of you. It’s been a pleasure chatting.
NICK: Absolutely, yeah, you too, man.
TARIN: Thanks for your time.
MD: Best of luck with the tour and I’ll look forward to the exciting news!