Fireworks Magazine Online 66 - Interview with I Am Giant

I Am Giant

Interview by Dave Bott

I Am Giant may be an unfamiliar name to many readers of Fireworks & Rocktopia (they certainly had me trawling the internet for more info) but the quality of the sophomore 'Science And Survival' release led me to pinning down bass player Paul Matthews for a brief chat. He gave me some background about the band and brought me up to date about the creation of the new album.

We formed around six years ago. Shelton (Woolright, drums) and I moved to the UK from New Zealand where we had been in well-established bands. We moved to the UK to be in a bigger musical environment and we spent about a year looking for a vocalist before we found Ed Martin. Our first album 'The Horrifying Truth' came out in 2011, and we have toured all over the globe in support of it including opening for Slash in Australia, playing some huge festivals including some DC Shoes and Quiksilver sponsored events as they have been supporting I Am Giant since before our first record. The better part of 2013 was spent working on and recording our follow up 'Science And Survival' which is out this year and due for a late October release in the UK.

My review of the album (very positive I must say) references several artists as comparisons but what are the influences of everyone in the band and do you think these influences are reflected in the songs on the new album?

I think influences always shine through. We're lovers of music so there's been a lot of influence. On ‘Science And Survival’ I was wanting to make something that was like a Pink Floyd record and create a musical journey. Shelton was really vibing on 90s grunge and alternative, so quite Soundgarden, from him. Ed was coming from more of a Radiohead vibe. There’s always a little Deftones and Faith No More in there too.

As the bio mentions, at times the music is hard-hitting but there are many reflective passages that include some great melodies. It's a style that is quite difficult to categorize but do you see that as a good thing?

Well as long as we're writing stuff that we think is exciting and other people hear it and think it’s exciting and make a connection with what we're writing about, we don't mind not being pigeon holed. If not being easily sorted into a genre were to stop us from being played on any radio stations... which no doubt it has done in some countries... then so be it. We have to be who we are, for better or worse and write what’s coming naturally as a unit.

With that in mind, closing track 'Bought With Ignorance, Sold With Arrogance' is something of an epic, clocking in at thirteen minutes, and at times borders on Progressive due to the changes in tempo. Did you go into the writing process with a song of that complexity in mind or did it just come naturally as the writing progressed?

No we planned it from the start. I think the call was to have a really epic last track to close the record and to have something that summarises the moods, themes and attitude of the rest of the songs. We spent a long time on it and worked to make sure that it was a journey worth taking. We had people saying no one would listen to a twelve minute song but we beg to differ. There are people who have the attention span and attention to detail who are hanging out for something that isn't just a three minute hook fest.

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The first two singles, 'Razor Wire Reality' and 'Death Of You', have a great commercial edge so how well have they been received so far, or is it too soon to tell? 

Too early to tell I think but we have noticed people singing them at shows so that’s a good sign.

Do you think the album is a natural progression from 'The Horrifying Truth'? If so, how do you think the band's sound has evolved?

I think it is a natural evolution for sure. It's a heavier, more progressive album than the first. We've settled into our sound a lot more and we were happy pushing it a lot more on this one.

How does the writing process usually take shape?

I usually start out with a load of musical ideas, riffs and so on and then Shelton and I will work on the ones we're both feeling, record the music and send it to Ed who will put some vocal lines to it. I'll then write the lyrics, we'll arrange and keep refining the ideas till it’s all working together and then we'll record and mix a demo of the track.

I'm guessing you'll be including as much of the new material in the live set as possible, with it being so strong?

Absolutely and also it’s awesome playing some new tunes live to say the least. We've played the old ones a lot.

So what does the rest of 2014 and 2015 have in store for I Am Giant? Is it just touring and promoting 'Science and Survival'?

That’s it - in a load of places. Europe, New Zealand and Australia and 2015 I believe we'll be hitting the US and Japan. We'll keep working on ideas for album number three as well.
We’re on tour at the end of October in the UK (Oct 30 Manchester, Kraak; Oct 31 Birmingham Oobleck; Nov 1 Nightmare Festival, London; Nov 5 Face Bar, Reading; Nov 6 Nottingham, Rock City; Nov 7 Cardiff, Moon Club) ticket links on our website!

Come say hi on if you haven't heard the tunes, Spotify us or head to our website

I Am Giant Interview


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