I caught up with the lead singer of White Eskimo, Will Sweeny, to have a chat about all things to do with his band, and here’s how that went;
So how do you feel about the release of your EP?
“We feel really good about it! The band’s been going for a while now and there’s been a few changes, but we’ve been working really hard on writing loads of stuff. It’s actually a really weird feeling because you’re constantly writing and when it comes to the actual release day its quite scary! The way spotify do it, they release everything the night before at midnight, so we were all waiting on the 22nd of March at 12am and finally having to, let go in a way, of all the stuff we’d been working on! There’s been huge support behind the release and it’s been a really big boost for us; but it is really strange having to conquer the realism of having the stuff you’ve been working so hard on available all over the world!”
How did the EP Launch show go? It looked amazing!
“It was actually a really fun show, it was in The Old Blue in Shoreditch in London and it was a really good gig. We’d been rehearsing for that one show for about 5 months and we’d been counting down so much for it and working ourselves up for it for so long. It was a really, not emotional, but kind of proud moment because of that build up, and it really was a fantastic gig.”
Tell us a story about how you all met?
“Well, Alex and I were at the same college, but we didn’t really chat to each other a lot, even though we were doing the same course and stuff. We met Brad at the studio for the band we had, even though we had no drummer at the time! We got asked to do some stuff for Rock FM, but we still didn’t have a drummer and I just went up to Alex, ‘cause I knew him from the course and stuff that he played drums, and asked if he would fill in for a few weeks, and he actually never left! None of us have actually said to him “Do you want to stay?” or he hasn’t said “I’m staying now,”, he just has stayed…it’s kind of cute! But once he filled in we all knew it was meant to be, I actually think he is one of the best drummers in the world.”
What’s your favourite song off the EP and why?
“Oh, that’s a really hard one. When you’re releasing an EP, you write so many songs that don’t make it, and it’s hard to come to an agreement from everyone for what songs are actually going to make it onto the record, ‘cause some people like x, y, z, but there’s so many other songs that you’ve written that you want to put out there. I mean, some of my favourite songs haven’t even been released yet, so that’s really exciting, and you’re still hoping that people like the stuff you’ve chosen to put on the EP. I really like Make a Move from the EP though, but again, there’s so many more songs to come that I absolutely love.”
Is there a story behind the name of the EP?
“There isn’t really, I wish there was! The lead single was actually originally called “Never Coming Back”, because it’s the hook line of the chorus, but we were told not to debut with a song called “Never Coming Back”…you can’t open with that! The lyrics are “100 times then a thousand more”, but we thought we’d be funky and hipster and put it on the EP cover as “100x”, like the symbol, because we really are all huge hipsters(!). It actually turned out quite well for the cover of the EP I think, it looks good!
Who are you listening to a lot of lately?
“I listen to everything…like Lamb of God and Slipknot, and actually, at the minute I really like that new song from Skrillex and Diplo, featuring Justin Bieber! I wouldn’t say ashamed or disappointed that I actually enjoy it because Justin Bieber’s in it…but we just have to embrace the Bieber! So, I listen to a lot of stuff, and I think that’s a really good kinda dance song. But yeah, I really like Lower Than Atlantis’s new album, they have a couple of really good songs like “English Kids in America” and their newer releases that I really like; they have a really cool sound.”
What band would you say are your biggest influence?
“I started playing drums when I was like 17, so I would listen out for really good drummers, so I’d say my biggest influence in that sense would definitely be, the one man I would turn homosexual for, Travis Barker. I saw a blink song on Kerrang! TV and I just thought, “that’s what I want to do”, so he is a huge influence on my music. I actually started off on drums in White Eskimo, and everything got changed around a bit and I ended up on vocals, which was really weird. I mean, I don’t think I would be a musician without Travis Barker, and also, you can’t overlook Dave Ghrol. blink-182 and Foo Fighters are my main influences anyway!”
Who would you like to tour with the most in the entire world?
“See, the question really is, would I rather play with 2/3rds of blink-182, now that Tom’s left, or the whole of Foo Fighters? Ahh, it’s so hard!! What I would ideally do is just have Travis on drums and Dave on guitar, cause I really can’t pick! It’s just between blink-182 and Foo Fighters, but it’s so hard to choose!”
How was it filming your music video?
“We’ve filmed a few in the past, but with this one, there was a lot more production and stuff because we filmed it in Granda TV’s old studio and it is so huge. It was so exciting for us because it gave us that feeling that everything was moving along; because we were in such a massive studio and we had to film the video with one of those camera drones, which was really fun. I can’t wait to record more! I think music videos need to fun and as stupid as possible, and I think we try to show off the fun side of rock, especially with the “100x” video. The video really shows off what we’re like because us four hardly ever have a serious conversation, we’re always joking and making fun of each other, so I was actually quite privileged to get the chance to show that off in such a cool way.”
What have you got in store for the rest of this year?
“Aw, we’ve got so much planned, we have a strategy and everything! We’re just working on loads more releases; new music, new videos, singles, EPs and an album, in whatever order happens! We’re doing a lot of shows in places like London, Manchester, Leeds…most of the big cities and it’s so exciting. We just want to play as many gigs as possible and build from the release of the EP and just keep pumping out content”
If you all had to swap instruments, who would play what?
“This isn’t meant to sound big headed or anything, but we can all play pretty much everything! I think I’d go for myself on drums, Brad on guitar Alex on bass and Roy singing; he’s got a fantastic voice. I’m so better on drums than Alex so that would work. You know what, we’re rehearsing tonight, we should totally do that to warm up, it would be interesting!”
Last question….If your house was on fire and you could only lift one album on the way out, what one would you pick and why?
“Oh jesus, that’s a really great question. Christ, okay, either….Enema of the State by blink-182 or Greatest Hits by Guns ‘N’ Roses. Ah, there’s so many genres I listen to, I can’t even think of all the albums I love! Oh, but actually, Greatest Hits by Elvis is a good one too. Elvis is such a big inspiration to me, vocally. I used to walk my dog like every night with my headphones in, singing at the top of my lungs when I was walking them and then my mum told me about a year later that people could actually hear me…I totally forgot everyone else could hear me singing when my headphones were in! It was a total stomach drop like “oh…my…god….” moment. I grew up listening to all the classics like Ray Charles and Elvis, and I could actually sing the songs! You know what, I’m just going to go for Elvis’ Greatest Hits.”
White Eskimo’s EP “100X” is now available for your listening pleasure on Spotify or on the band’s bandcamp, or you can buy the EP on iTunes. The video for the single “100X” is also on youtube so you can see these guys doing what they do best!
“100X” is a really great, refreshing release from Manchester based rock outfit White Eskimo. They effortlessly blend rock with pop punk melodies and breakdowns, and you can tell how much time and effort has been put into this release. If you aren’t already compelled to listen to it, here’s a little synopsis of each song, to convince you even more to check out this amazingly talented band.
100x – This is the lead single from the EP of the same name, and it’s really easy to tell why. If you’re looking for a catchy pop punk song with a hard hitting chorus, look no further. This song in particular is a real throwback, taking me back as far as The Buzzcocks – with heavily distorted guitars, captivating bass and pacy drums. This song is accompanied by an equally fast video, and it’s a release this Mancunian band should be very proud of.
Wake Up – This one is my personal favourite from the EP. The riffs and breakdowns remind me instantly of The Story so Far and even blink-182, who the band cite as one of their influences, particularly in the post chorus/bridge breakdown. The vocals are hard hitting and the bass is emphasised so wonderfully. This track sounds like it could be a single in its own right, demanding to be played loud, just as “100x” demands. The lyrics are also a highlight of this song for me; the band have made it easy to relate to and very very easy to sing along to.
Tell Me Your Name – This track has more pop appeal than the two previous songs, with hints of early 2000s pop rock like Busted coming through. It has that anthemic vibe that the early 2000s captured so well, especially in the chorus. White Eskimo have done an amazing job in maintaining the musical vibe in all of the tracks on this EP, making it very easy to listen to, simply because all the tracks flow so well.
Make A Move – Now this one is definitely a pop punk track! With an intro that grabs your attention immediately, it’s hard to imagine that the rest of the song will maintain the listener’s interest, but it doesn’t disappoint. In fact, it only impresses more. This song fits in perfectly with the “new wave” of pop-punk that is taking over the world at the minute, and in my opinion with this track, White Eskimo stand alongside other newcomers like Seaway, Handguns and ROAM.
All in all, this EP is a really exciting release, not only for the band themselves, but for this genre of music at the minute. White Eskimo show a lot of potential, and I am patiently waiting to see what these four will do next! Meanwhile, here is the soundcloud link to their single “100x”.