Band Crush: St. Buryan

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Photo by Jay Dawson

I’ve been out of the loop with bands in the North East lately, mainly since I stopped organising my own gigs back in December, but I’ve been making an effort to listen to new music again and I’m glad I have or I wouldn’t have found St. Buryan!


Based in Newcastle and Sunderland, St. Buryan are an indie-pop quintet currently taking the North East by storm and preparing for the release of their new single, ‘Forget To Love’.

The band is made up of Ben Mackett: lead vocals, Callum Palmer: lead guitar, Daniel Jordan: bass guitar, Nathan Gooch: guitar and backing vocals and Rhys Melhuish: drums. I decided to have a chat with the lads and find out more about them…and their new single!

Now 2017 has been a busy and exciting year for you so far. You’ve been gigging a lot, releasing tunes, and building up a really great fan base – what have been the highlights?

Ben – The highlights have been plentiful. The best of the best would have to be supporting Picnic at O2 Academy- the atmosphere that night was incredible.

Dan – The highlight for me has been how the band have come together after the time away. We’ve had a tough couple of years with university commitments, and we’ll probably have a few more when we start looking for jobs. But we’ve stuck at it, and though we don’t record or rehearse as much as we’d like to, when we do, it’s a feeling like nothing else.

Rhys – To come back after a while of not doing anything to see that people are still interested in us and our music, that’s been amazing for us. Personally, supporting Flyte at the Surf Cafe in Tynemouth has been the highlight. I’m a HUGE fan of Flyte, and to support them at one of the North East’s best venues was incredible.

When you’re not gigging yourselves, I notice you’re always heading to gigs and it’s really nice to see you support other local bands. As you guys are my current band crush, I want to know who you are loving and listening to at the minute, and who we should we be checking out?

Callum – The Old Pink House are a sensational band who I can’t wait to see again live. Sam Fender is another I’ve only recently discovered, but I’m very glad I did. He’s a fantastic songwriter.

Dan – For me, I’m a big fan of Far Pacific. Not just to listen to, but as people too. They’ve popped over to see us before some of our shows just to catch up, I’ve got a lot of time for them!

Nathan – You should definitely check out Peace Frog (Nathan also plays in them FYI!). We’ve got an EP coming out this month and a launch show in Sunderland on October 27th. Elsewhere, I’m a big fan of both Picnic and Cohesion.

You initially formed back in 2013, but took a bit of a break back in 2015. How does it feel now being right back into the swing of it all? Was the break helpful for you?

Callum – It’s a great feeling being back. The break did help out because I feel we’ve all grown and matured in the time away, both musically and in a ‘professional’ way of how we want to get things done now.

Rhys – It’s been great doing stuff with the band again, but we’re not quite there yet. We’ve got that last year of university to come, and then Dan is off to Italy for a bit. Hopefully in a year or so we can all come back and properly, properly give this a go.

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Artwork by Sarah Legender (Rat Stamp Musician Artwork)

You’re getting ready to release your new single ‘Forget To Love’, which is GREAT! Tell us a bit about the song, and how you guys work during your writing process.

Ben –
It’s a straight-up pop song that we wanted to fill with hooks and sing-along sensibility. As for the writing process it’s a mish-mash of whoever is there at the time we sit down together, and we’ll bounce around some ideas.

Dan – Not to blow our own trumpet, but I absolutely love the new song. It’s a bit bizarre for me as we changed a lot of the bass on the day, and wrote the new riff while recording. It’s bizarre to listen to it and think ‘wow, that’s the first time I’d ever played that’, but it sounds great!

Rhys – It’s an upbeat, feel-good, toe-tapper. It’s got a great riff, plus Ben and Nathan’s harmonies during the bridge section are absolutely epic. A few fans have hinted they’ve wanted us to release this as a single soon, so here we are!

The single is self-produced, but am I right in thinking it was mixed by ‪Darwin Deez frontman Darwin Smith? How did that come about??

Ben – That’s all down to Rhys. It was a ‘shy bairns get nowt’ situation on Twitter. Darwin took a chance on us and we can’t thank him enough for it!

Rhys – He’d posted on Twitter that he was looking for new songs to mix, and if anyone was interested to get in touch. We spoke back and forth for a while about what we were after, he asked for a rough mix and if he liked it, he’d mix it. He liked it, so he mixed it! It’s still surreal to say that Darwin Deez worked with us on the track, and we absolutely love the mix. Cheers, Darwin!

Who would you say your influences are musically?

Callum – My biggest influence has always been Carlos Santana. The way he plays, it’s so fluent. Each riff, each solo speaks to you as if he’s telling you a story.

Dan – I’ve got a really varied music taste. The Black Eyed Peas, The Coral, Green Day, stuff like that. I think that combination of different sounds and influences has given me a lot of ideas to play around with.

Finally, what can we expect next from St. Buryan?

Ben – You can expect us to keep a few singles coming, with something a little bigger in the works behind the scenes!

Dan – We’ll be recording a bit of stuff here and there, when we can. I’ve got myself a job in Milan for six months from January, so there’ll sadly be another break. But we’re expecting good things, and we hope you are too!

‘Forget To Love’ will be released on 27th October 2017!

If you want to catch St. Buryan live you can see them…

– 27th October (acoustic set) @ Independent, Sunderland (Event here)
– 31st October @ Jumpin’ Jacks Halloween Ball, Newcastle (Event here)

You can also follow them, give them a like, and give them a listen, too!

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Photo by Jay Dawson

** ALSO if you liked the artwork for the single, and would like to find out more about Sarah Legender (Rat Stamp Musician Artwork)…check out her Facebook page here!

 

 

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