I was invited along to an EP launch party hosted by a band called Radiosaurus, I had landed from a foreign holiday earlier in the day but wanted to remain true to my word so off I trotted to the Apple & Parrot pub in downtown Torquay where the stage was set for 3 bands to rock the socks off the audience.
After the first two acts, I was quite literally falling asleep, not because I was bored, just incredibly tired. I had to leave otherwise there was a risk that I may end up curled up in the corner, sleeping next to an inflatable T-Rex. I felt bad that I had missed the lead band at their own EP launch party, as a way of trying to make it up to them, I asked them if they'd be interested in doing an interview on the website, they said yes, we spoke to Jaz (J), Alex (A) & Karl (K), here's how we got on....
So, we know you’re called Radiosaurus and that you’re an alt rock band from Plymouth, tell us something about the band that not many people know…..
(J) none of us are actually from Plymouth
(A) We played live for the first time the same day I (Alex) and Karl actually even met. We worked out a basic song “Black Bandanas” drank some beers and played a jam night in Totnes. Other than that, there’s not much you don’t all know, we’re stupidly transparent on social media and that.
(K) We were thinking of calling the band ‘I Scream Her’. We love the original Pokemon Trading Card Game and are partial to a game or two using Jaz’s collection.
You recently hosted your EP launch party at The Apple & Parrot in Torquay, what is it about The Quincies and Dead.Ground that made you choose them as support acts? Both are exceptional local talents that complement our sound as well as just being awesome people to be around
(A) We’ve played with both bands a few times before. The Quincies are Torbay’s home town heroes and are the most fun people you’ll meet, no show is going to be dull if the Quincies are present. And Dead Ground are this crazily talented trio from Exeter who we keep inviting to play shows, standing back, watching and thinking “shit, they’re too good, we need to stop inviting them to play before us”. What they both do really well though is play original music, which is what we wanted the night to be about.
(K) The Quincies have been around Torbay for donkeys, play similar styles of outlandish and fun live music, and they’re good friends of ours, so really it was a no-brainer. We also supported them the month before at their EP launch, again hosted at the Parrot. Dead Ground are an amazing live act that genuinely don’t know just how good they are. We cover all core Devon areas between us including Plymouth, Torbay and Exeter.
You name Music, gaming, skateboarding & films as personal interests, let’s go a little deeper and ask you to name your favourite from each category, fave album, game, skateboarder etc…
(J) QOTSA – Like Clockwork
Ocarina of Time
Donni Darko, I honestly can’t tell you why I like this film so much, partly the sound track I think.
(A) Etta James or Billie Holiday for music, Rock and Pop saturate my life in being in a band and my day job, so it’s nice to listen to something beautiful.
Mario Kart, all joking aside no-one will beat me at Mario Kart, you can issue that as a challenge to any reader.
I suck at skating, but I enjoy it all the same. Probably someone like Rodney Mullen would be my favourite skater, you have to have some admiration for anyone that is literally so good at the thing they do that it almost destroys them, yet defined the entire sport.
Jurassic Park. Favourite film, hands down. That movie is a sort of manifesto for how I live my life.
(K) Fave game is Final Fantasy 7, fave film is Goldeneye, fave album would be Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not (Arctic Monkeys)
Would you rather live with a gorilla who can do sign language or a dog who sings lullabies?
(J) Would have to be the Gorilla, but only because I wouldn’t be able to have a conversation with the dog without feeling sleepy.
(A) Imagine how irritating that dog would be, just for a minute stop and think about just how tuneless, loud and needy that dog would be. Gorilla with sign language, hands down… pun intended.
(K) I love dogs so definitely that. Although a Gorilla would make for an intense bodyguard.
I was at the EP launch party in Torquay the other night but having landed in the UK from a break in Spain that afternoon, I threw in the towel after The Quincies’ set as I was proper pooped and needed my bed. Please can you summarise the evening from that point onward?
(A) You came to the Radiosaurus launch event and watched all but Radiosaurus? Did you stick around for the bit where we had a free money party and Harrison Ford made a guest appearance and the animatronic fire breathing dinosaur? That was the best bit… It was an incredible night, everyone had a few fizzy pops, we played for a good hour and a half, all originals, the venue stayed busy, there was dancing, our old drummer joined us for a track. It was just a good night really!
I did see a large inflatable dinosaur who was wearing one of your T-Shirts, is he a regular at your shows? He was falling over a lot, too many ‘dino-beers’?
(J) That was his first outing with us, we told him to take it easy on the beers …did not listen! Made especially hard, as his arms aren’t long enough to reach his mouth. If you ask me he’s a bit of a liability.
(A) He’s a new addition and to be honest I don’t know if he came back with us at the end of the night. When we heard from him he said he was feeling a bit deflated the next day, so I guess too many dino-beers might have been had.
(K) Greetings from Randy the Radiosaurus Rex. He randomly appeared at the show, and left shortly after our set. Who knows, he may appear from out of the mist again sometime like his friend Magic Puff.
You’re off on holiday for a year on a desert island, you can only take 3 albums with you, which ones are they gonna be and why?
(J) Thievery Corporation - The Cosmic Game. The perfect holiday chill out album
David Bowie – The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars. Who wouldn’t want David Bowie singing to them on a desert island?
..and anything by Ennio Morricone, just an amazing composer!
(A) Imagine how sick you’d be of those three albums though? This question is basically; which three albums would you ruin forever for yourself?
I reckon actually that I could listen to Sergeant Peppers over and over enough and still love it. I’ve got a weird record of 60’s Hawaiian “Honolulu strings” which would be pretty apt for the location, then let’s say… The best of power ballads. After a few desert island punches I’d be well into the idea of singing along to that.
(K) I’d rather not bother, would drive me insane! Instead I’ll make bongos out of coconut shells and stuff and create my own music.
‘This Poisonous Town’ is a track on the new EP, is this about a particular town?
(A) It’s about the way you feel about your home town whoever you are. There’s always a feeling that pulls you back to where you came from, a bittersweet comfort that would be so easy to be enveloped by. But when you’re there, nothing changes and nothing grows from it. If you ever found yourself looking at the same street, the same people, the same everything and wondering what the rest of the world could be like with you in it, that’s what the song is about.
I stumbled upon a cover of ‘Ghostbusters’ that you performed live on Soundart Radio a year ago, how did that come about and did you have to seek the approval from Ray Parker Jr prior to performing it?
(J) I believe it was around Halloween time and we had been asked to play on Soundart radio, so we thought it would be rather fitting. Learnt 20 mins before the show outside the pub in the dark over a glass of Red, Ray Parker Jr was busy that night so declined the offer to join us ..so yes we definitely, maybe didn’t ask him?
(A) It was Halloween and we’d had a few glasses of wine in the pub next to the radio station with our acoustic guitars with us and just decided it’d be fun.
We came to the decision a little while ago that we were just going to stop playing cover songs altogether, we felt it started to de-value our original music and ended up being what people remembered us for.
What’s with the wolf masks on the cover of the CD?
(J) Wolf masks?
(A) The EP is the first chapter in an overlying story for a concept album we’re gradually building. The wolves feature prominently in that story as a metaphor for greed and tyranny in our society. If you look closely at one of the wolf’s t-shirt and the second track of the EP, you’ll see the tie-in.
What are your views on these so called ‘Talent shows’ like X-Factor and Britains Got Talent? A hopeless waste of time or prime time entertainment?
(J) Not really my game, I feel it promotes the wrong things for music, the music seems to take the back seat as theatrics, ego and profit take over. The best musicians play music for the love of music and nothing more.
(A) I know people complain about those shows setting up a new idealised standard for kids hoping to become musicians by means of a talent show rather than hard work, but I think that’s unappreciated “musicians” spouting off self-righteous nonsense. The future is going to be a neon televised hell whether we like it or not. There’ll be a social media-centric world where the way we get any job is by means of reality TV. Everything will be filmed and public, CVs will be voted on in facebook, then everyone will tune in as Channel 4 show a desperate unemployed nation, clamouring and clawing their way over each other, degrading themselves for our entertainment all for the prize of being employed as McDonalds next fry cook for minimum wage credits. They’ll be pleased as punch when they win too as they’ll finally be able to afford a contract on a brand new iPhone and a subscription to TV-Flix so they can watch others undergo the same hell they endured. Meanwhile the losers scrabble at the blood streaked, steel walls that border us in to the UK, crying and praying to a God that’s long since been out-lawed that they hadn’t fucking voted to leave the EU like fucking morons.
(K) Not really my bag, would prefer to watch a documentary of some kind. Reality TV is dreadful.
What was the last book you read? What was it about?
(J) 1984, nice little dystopian novel for my Holiday in Portugal
(A) I’m currently reading Stephen King’s “IT”, which I have to keep hiding because it’s too terrifying. I love Stephen King’s books though. The song “Haunted House” is about The Shining actually. “IT” though is like a beautiful yet traumatic life-event I’ve been working up to for years and now, putting off reading and now am finally undergoing.
(K) 1984 by George Orwell. Absolute classic.
What, in your opinion is THE best album of 2015 so far?
(J) Probably Eagles of Death Metal – Zipper Down but to be honest there’s been nothing this year that’s blown me away, very disappointed with the Tame Impala release.
(A) It’s been a tough year for new music in 2015. I think because 2014 was so insanely good. Most of the albums I was really excited about ended up being a bit lacklustre. Florence and the Machine’s new album was only ok, Dre (which I was so excited about) just wasn’t as cool as his first. I heard Lana Del Rays new album last week finally and really liked that, but still found myself preferring to listen to the previous album. My Morning Jacket brought out “Waterfall” which is an outstanding album from start to finish. It’s beautiful and engrossing, there are sounds in that album that I don’t know how they’ve created.
(K) 2014 was better
What has been the MOST rock n’ roll thing you have ever done (I’m looking for TV’s out of windows, copious amounts of drugs, hookers etc…)
(J) We slightly agitated a seagull on a roof and stole some brie once.
(A) I don’t know that we’re actually that rock and roll yet, we’ve not had much of a chance to be as we’ve not done a tour. We’ve played a few hammered gigs, stolen some things from some places and been terrible role-models. But we’ll make sure to tick everything off that list as soon as we get a chance. I’d hate to disappoint.
(K) I attended the Bovey Tracey Mansion Party (look it up). That shit was insane. I was there the whole night and saw some crazy antics like people throwing furniture out of the house, pillaging anything they could find and swinging from numerous chandeliers.
If you could have any band in the universe support you at a gig, who would it be and why?
(J) The Doors would be insane, maybe too insane? You said nothing about them being alive.
(A) There are SO many bands I’d love to play with. Imagine getting to hang out backstage with Motley Crue or Alice Cooper or something? That’d be the most fun.
(K) Black Sabbath, they’re crazy guys and I have recently fallen back in love with their music. I want to see Ozzy on stage biting the head off a dinosaur toasting Radiosaurus.
You’re based in Plymouth, do you tend to stay down that neck of the woods or are you travelling about a bit more to reach a wider audience?
(A) We actually play surprisingly little in Plymouth. We’re still outsiders to the Plymouth music crowd. They don’t tend to like outsiders that much. We’ve actually found Torbay to be the most welcoming place that’s encouraging original music at the moment. We’re keen to get out of the South West and play the rest of the UK soon though!
(K) Mostly Devon but we’re looking at organising a mini UK tour next year if we can.
Please suggest 3 acts that the readers of musicmuso can go and check out….
(A) Allusondrugs, from Leeds. I’ve got a friend who plays bass for them, he’s nearly as good at Mario Kart as me… not quite. They play awesome grungy rock and are doing really well for themselves. Obviously The Quincies and Dead Ground… but I’ve already said how much I love those guys. If you like the whole alt-rock vibe, listen to DZ Deathrays who provide me with more or less constant inspiration.
(K) Dead Ground, The Quincies, Lola and the Showgirl
What plans have you got for festivals during 2016?
(A) First I’m going to crack open a field-warm tinny and struggle to put my tent up. I’ll probably wonder about a bit listening to day-time bands and grab a burger. I’ll buy one overpriced beer and enjoy how ice-cold it is for 20 minutes or so before topping up the increasingly scuffed paper/plastic cup it came in with warm lager I’ve smuggled in in my leather jackets oversized pockets. I’ll inevitably sing along to something I normally say I hate and then I’ll wake up too early the next day in a stuffy tent gasping for air at the zip and regretting not buying better beers while my head thumps like the bass-drum I can just about hear being sound-checked in the distance.
(K) We’re working on that.
We thought it was only fair that we put the three guys through our round of quickfire questions to see how they managed under extreme pressure....
Earl Grey or Darjeeling?
(J) The one that tastes the most like coffee
(K) Earl Grey
Lager or Bitter?
Recording Studio or Live show?
(J) Recording Studio for me
(A) Live Show every time!
(K) Live Show
Mac or PC?
(K) Mac, but sadly I don’t own one
X-Factor or Strictly?
(J) Ice factor come strictly talent X stars!
(K) No thanks
The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones?
(K) Game Of Thrones
Bad Santa or Miracle on 34th Street?
(J) Die Hard
(A) Miracle on …
(K) Elf is better, got to love Will Ferrell
Christmas Eve or New Years Eve?
(J) Christmas Eve
(A) Awww… Christmas! J New Years always ends up with intense regret.
(K) NYE ‘cos everyone’s in a good mood
CD or Vinyl?
(J) CD, vinyl doesn’t fit in my car too good
(A) Vinyl… but I’m learning to hate it fast.
Wolves or Dinosaurs?
(A) Dinosaurs? As if that’s a question?
Car or Motorbike?
(A) Train, Cars make me sick and Motorbikes make people dead.
(K) The Bang Bus
Tattoos or Piercings?
(J) Tattoos of piercings
Shower or Bath?
God or Google?
(J) Google, God is less responsive to questioning.
(A) One and the same
(K) Google knows more than any God ever could
We'd like to thank Jaz, Alex and Karl for taking the time to answer our questions, we wish them every success for the remainder of 2015 and look forward to staying awake and maybe catching them at another show in the near future.
Please spend a few minutes checking out their social media pages, they're all listed below, all you need do is point and click....
Interview by Steve Muscutt