Creeper are getting to the point where they need no introduction. After signing to Roadrunner Records, playing a multitude of huge tours and massive festivals, the band have quickly gone from strength to strength after starting last year.
They’re gearing up for the release of their new EP, The Callous Heart, which will be their debut on Roadrunner.
We caught up with them at this year’s Hevy Fest in Kent to chat about the whirlwind year they’re having, what they thought of Hevy, and the DIY punk scene in their hometown of Southampton.
How was Hevy for you guys?
Ian Miles (Guitar): Hevy’s been rad, I don’t like to name “favourite” things, but it’s been one of the best things of the year.
Will Gould (Vocals): Yeah, it’s been great, all our mates are here too so it’s been great to hang out with them as well as playing. The show was great and a lot of friend’s bands have played. A really good vibe.
Who else did you manage to check out?
WG: I saw Grader, Landscapes, Heck. I popped in and saw a bit of Touché Amoré on the main stage, so it’s been great.
So, how did signing to Roadrunner come about?
WG: Just incredible, a match made in heaven. We knew Ian Dickinson who works there from before he worked at Roadrunner, and there was a period where there were a couple of labels who were into us. Ian just said “oh, by the way, I work at Roadrunner.” It was nuts. We wanna invest in a person, and when we first met him we knew we would be friends straight away. He came to one of our first shows, and when it came time for labels to get interested. So, they came up and were interested, and because we had a relationship prior to that it made it really easy. They also put out some of our favourite records over the years, so it was a no-brainer.
How has the experience been so far?
WG: It’s been nuts. We’re from the DIY punk scene, so we’re not used to this sort of shenanigans, but it’s great. The team we’re working with really get our band. They get all the aesthetics, and they get all of that stuff. We were talking to them about what we wanted to do with the next record and they were practically finishing our sentences. It’s been a real journey for us, and a giant learning curve, because we don’t normally do things on this scale. The band is escalating a lot more than we ever thought it would, we thought we’d probably just get a few local support shows for touring bands.
Why do you think it all kinda has blown up so fast?
WG: I don’t know, it’s really hard to say, but what we do is based on a lot of nostalgia. Based on bands like AFI and Alkaline Trio and bands like that. The UK scene has kinda been suffocated with a lot of lad-rock over the past few years, and people tell me they’re happy to see something more flamboyant. But, I don’t know. We just feel very lucky. This doesn’t happy to people like us, so it’s cool.
What’s it been like doing everything so fast?
WG: The year has been so hectic, that we haven’t had much time to sit around and reflect on anything. A lot of our dreams have come true in a short space of time. I guess it’s something we had to get to grips with, but we’re doing okay. We were on tour and then we went to record The Callous Heart in secret so nobody would know about it, and while we were recording we kept getting booked for festivals because nobody knew we were recording, so my voice was tired all the time. When we went back to recording, I had to warm up loads. I’m sure when you’re at home you have those days when you just don’t wanna do anything, and you still have those on tour.
IM: Yeah, you just have to get motivated and get ready for the day.
WG: We feel like our audience deserves our best every day, and if you’re out there and you feel nervous or anxious you have to find a way of dealing with that. You learn a lot of coping mechanisms.
IM: You learn a lot about yourself.
Is it much different playing this big festivals compared to small DIY shows?
WG: Yeah, it’s really different, but we approach it the same way. That’s all we know, and to be our sincere as we can. With our band we’re in character when we play, and that helps us deal with the situation a lot. Going to face the songs as myself without them, I think we’d be a lot more nervous. And yeah, it’s different because there’s a lot more people and people we’ve never played in front of before. A lot of industry people have come to see us recently too, even though we have all our stuff sorted. But yeah, we just try to approach it the same way as if we were playing in Southampton to ten people.
How is the scene in Southampton at the moment?
IM: I think it’s thriving, it’s the best it has been for a while.
WG: We’ve got some great bands. We’ve got Nathan Detroit, and Bury Tomorrow who took us out on one of our first tours and they’re doing great. The Joiners in Southampton is a bit of an institution anyway, and for the first year in a long time it’s made a good profit. Because of all these great shows we’ve got coming through, and all these great bands kids are getting back into music again. Music shouldn’t be exclusive, and we kinda retain the ethics we had when we were a DIY punk band. I hope that people see our band and say “I wanna do our band” and show them that anything is possible, because we feel like anything is possible, and it surely is for better bands than us – and there are a lot of better bands than us.
What else have you got coming up this year?
WG: Moose Blood tour, and a release show, and then we’re doing a show for Banquet Records which is really important to us. Then we’re doing a Halloween show. Loads of stuff, it’s awesome.