Not Signed In
| Email | Cart | Items
| Photography |
| Buy | Sell |
Skip Navigation Links
Sitting back waiting for a phone call to interview Oceansize, I am bit restless to say the least. The band are running late. Interviewee, guitarist Gambler, has popped out for bag of chips leaving me no option but to drink in the student bar with its plentiful cheap booze.
I look around wearily in the University of Manchester’s student union at the collection of people gathering before tonight’s show. I then spot Charlie Simpson from Busted/Fightstar coming in the door and an evil plot forms in my head. I imagine the headline for my imaginary story: ‘Busted singer kicked to death on stairwell of world famous educational institution. Police glad ’.
Finally I get the call, and have to put murdering failed boy band members on the back burner for now.
Oceansize featuring vocalist Mike Vennart, guitarist Steve Durose, drummer Mark Heron, bassist Steven Hodson and guitarist Gambler have been kicking around making anthemic noise since early 2000.
Having met up as students in Manchester, the band has delivered two exceptionally received albums 'Effloresce' and 'Everyone Into Position', winning themselves a legion of devotees. Oceansize have just released an epic new album, 'Frames'. I meet up with guitarist and part-time road manager Gambler before their spiritual homecoming show at the Manchester Academy.
PB : Describe your sound. I have been trying to pin you guys down for years.
Gambler : I think we have been tied into the whole progressive thing for quite a bit now. When we formed the band we didn’t think we were going to be this or that sort of band. We’re forward thinking as far as our music is concerned.
PB : I would describe it as progressive, but not in the Yes sense of the word.
Gambler : Yeah without the capes, Rick Wakeman and 10 minute keyboard solos. We just have the desire to keep ourselves interested.
PB : Where do you think you are right now with the new album 'Frames' ?
Gambler : I have no idea. Whenever we get into the writing period we always try to start fresh. We don’t use any old material. We did that on the last album so this time we have just gone for totally new material. I think really it is just how we feel at the time. We wanted this one.
PB : Where do you come up with your imaginative song titles?
Gambler : A lot of it is just taking the piss. We got accused once in an interview of being too sincere. You only have to look at the song titles to realise we are just a bunch of lads with a stupid sense of humour. Some of them come from cult films, or comedy shoes like 'The Day Today'. Most of the song titles have nothing to with the song whatsoever.
PB : Your music is quite layered, epic. I have to admit it takes a long time for it to grow on me.
Gambler : Yeah. People often say our music isn’t instantly digestible. It always takes a bit of time. People don’t really get it at first but we like that. It just means people are paying attention when they show up at gigs.
PB : I suppose everyone asks this, but where does your inspiration come from?
Gambler : With us, I suppose it comes from the minds of the five guys in the band. Everyone has such diverse influences. I think it would be a list a mile long. The obvious ones, especially for me, would be Radiohead, Mogwai, Aphex Twin, Nine Inch Nails and Tool; I think I could probably go on all day. I mean if you looked at our record collection you probably wouldn’t think it.
PB : I have always wanted to ask you, being named Oceansize, are you are Jane’s Addiction fans ?
Gambler : Yeah it was our old bass player came up with the name. I think at the time he was thinking what we would sound like. Jane’s 'Nothing Shocking' album, which has the track 'Ocean Size' on it, was definitely a big influence.
PB : What’s your opinion on British rock at the minute?
Gambler : To tell you the truth I don’t really listen to it. I go through phases. At the minute I’m just listening to classical music. Okay, we’re part of the scene I suppose but I have no opinions. The last good album I heard this year was Future of the Left, featuring ex-members of Mclusky. It is an absolutely amazing album.
PB : What about being a Manchester band?
Gambler : Being a Manchester based band? I really hate that whole baggy scene, can’t fucking stand them. You get lumped in with carrying on this great tradition. It is not a great tradition as far as I am concerned.
PB : How did you get Robin Finck (former Nine Inch Nails and current Guns N’ Roses guitarist-Ed) onboard to do the artwork for 'Frames' ?
Gambler : He’s a hero of mine. We saw his art; it is pretty ambiguous and amazing stuff so just asked him if could we use some of his stuff.
PB : Did you meet him?
Gambler : No, we e-mailed him and he was cool with it. I mean if you look at his work. You cannot quite tell what it is. I think our music is a lot like that.
PB : You didn’t by chance ask him when 'Chinese Democracy' was being released ?
Gambler : We thought about it. But judging by the FAQ section of his website entitled ‘When will Chinese Democracy be released’ we didn’t think it was appropriate.
PB : Thank you.
Commenting On: Interview - Oceansize
ie London, England
tick box before submitting comment
At a show in Manchester, Aaron Brown speaks to guitarist Geezer from indie guitar group Oceansize about his band's just released third album, 'Frames'
Anna Gudaniec shoots incendiary Manchester based art rockers Oceansize at a show at the London Scala
Top Articles (Current Magazine)
Tom Bridgewater Interview
Dennis Dunaway and Chris Hodenfield Snakes! Guillotines! Electric Chairs! My Adventures in the Alice Cooper Group
Bernard “Pretty” Purdie Let the Drums Speak!: The Life Story of the World’s Most Recorded Drummer
Light Over There Interview
Glenn Gregory Interview
Hattie Briggs Interview
Lorraine Wood Interview
Peter Waterman Interview
Simon Townshend Interview
Gigantic Indie All Dayer Vol. 2 Academy, Manchester, 23/5/2015
Bryan Ferry New Theatre, Oxford, 9/5/2015
Andy Bell Interview
Jon DeRosa Rough Trade, Nottingham, 27/4/2015
Barna Howard interview
Top Articles (Other - This Month)
Billy Childish Interview
Black Moth Interview
Ian Anderson Interview
Don Felder Interview
Frankie Goes to Hollywood Interview with Paul Rutherford
Richard Newman Interview
Rolling Stones United Center, Chicago, 31/5/2013
Anthony Reynolds Interview
Micah P Hinson Broadcast, Glasgow, 27/4/2014
Ian Dury New Boots and Panties
Graham Day and the Gaolers Dirty Water Club, London, 2/11/2007
Dweezil Zappa Chicago Music Exchange, Chicago, 10/10/2013
Top Reviews (Current Magazine)
Cinerama Valentina CD (Scopitones)
Orange Humble Band Depressing Beauty CD (Citadel Records)
Du Blonde Welcome Back to Milk CD (Mute Records)
Gabrielle Papillon The Tempest of Old CD (Gabrielle Papillon)
Pretty Things The Sweet Pretty Things (Are in Bed Now, Of Course…) CD (Repertoire)
Baby Chaos Skulls, Skulls, Skulls, Show Me the Glory CD (Three Hands Glory)
It Hugs Back Slow Wave CD (Safe and Sound Records)
Baked A La Ska Gas Mark 3 (The Slow Burner) CD (Limefield Records)
Padna Alku Toinen CD (Aagoo Records/Rev Laboratories)
Derek Piotr Bahar CD (Bit Phalanx)
Top Reviews (Other - This Month)
Chris Strofollino Griffith Park CD (Broken Horse)
Songs Ohia The Lioness CD (Secretly Canadian)
Michelle Lewis The Parts of Us That Still Remain CD (Michelle Lewis Music)
Marc Almond Burning Bright/The Dancing Marquis 7" (Cherry Red)
Asaf Avidan and the Mojos The Reckoning CD (Columbia)
Bruce Foxton Back in the Room CD (Absolute)
Pocket Gods Weird Shit CD (Nub Country Records)
Quicksilver Messenger Service Live at the Summer of Love CD (Floating World)
Pretty Things Bouquets from a Cloudy Sky CD Box (Snapper)
John McCullagh and The Escorts New Born Cry CD (359 Music/Cherry Red)