Scottish Rockers Twin Atlantic Interview

Scottish Rockers Twin Atlantic – Interview

On a recent trip to their hometown of Glasgow, rockers Sam and Craig from Twin Atlantic took DYRT backstage.

For people who have never heard of Twin Atlantic – tell us a bit about your story so far?

Sam: “In a nutshell, Twin Atlantic are a band from Glasgow  who met at school, liked the same bands and music, so started going to gigs together and became hooked by what we seen.  From there Ross learnt how to play guitar, which made me jealous, so of course I had to learn. Along with Craig and Barry, we started to play together in the Glasgow underground music scene, worked really hard, toured with lots of random bands and then a couple years ago we got record deal and recorded Vivarium.”

What have been your biggest highlights so far?

Sam: “Loading into this venue was totally bizarre…It could actually be my highlight so far.  Mostly because I used to come here as a kid with my dad to gigs, to watch people I idolised at the time.

“Touring with Blink 182, and Playing at T in the Park – also playing in and being appreciated in America is great.”

Following the release of your first album, Vivarium, you toured with Blink 182 & My Chemical Romance… During this time you have said you felt you ‘lost’ yourself in a way – which you talk about in the single ‘Edit Me’ – How would you say you’ve changed now, reformed as a group?

Following the release of your first album, Vivarium, you toured with Blink 182 & My Chemical Romance… During this time you have said you felt you ‘lost’ yourself in a way – which you talk about in the single ‘Edit Me’ – How would you say you’ve changed now, reformed as a group?

Sam: “In all honesty I think what really happened is we became a little too self aware.  We had a lot of people trying to give us advice, usually for good reason but we got caught up in it and it began creeping into simple things from getting our photo taken to what to wear.

“Essentially we now try not to care.  Don’t get me wrong we care about the fans and the music but what we do now is try not to please everyone and hope that like minded people will appreciate that.

Ross: “It not that our management or anyone forced anything on us, we just got wrapped up in all the madness but there came a point were you could say we had an epiphany and realised we had lost our way a bit.  Thankfully were back on the straight and narrow now.”

How would you say ‘Free’ differs from your first album, Vivarium?  Tell us a bit about the tracks on this album…what’s your favourite track?

Sam: “I’d say its more straight forward, a bit popier.  I know most folk hate when bands do that, but I think we’ve achieved it in a way that makes our songs more impactful, grungier even.

The music comes from all our own experiences.  I was only 18 when we started band and to stand at side of stage, listening to our hero’s play, soaking that up.  We’ve channelled that into our sound and the way we want our future to be and that’s what we’ve tried to do with this album.”

Sam:  I’d say ‘Free’ or ‘The Joy of Eddie’ is my favourite.

Considering his impressive back catalogue, how was it working with such an esteemed producer as Gil Norton?

Sam: “It was weird when it was confirmed – I kept on thinking, ‘Will we live up to what he’s done before?’ – But all our nerves disappeared within about a minute of meeting him! He’s just a really normal, down to earth guy from Liverpool.

Gil has been recording for 20 years so really knows his stuff so was ale to pass on bits n pieces from his experience, for instance, we’d be playing a  straight beat and he’d say ‘well if you added like a rolling groove here it would flow better’

Once or twice he asked are your sure you want to say that – is that actually what you mean – pointing out things we maybe hadn’t noticed or thought about past that particular line.  It was great to have his opinion and influence because when you’re writing sometimes you’re too close.”

You guys are playing at T in the Park and have just played at the Glasgow Barrowlands…Being that you’re Scottish, do you feel an added pressure when you perform for your home audience?

Ross: “Glasgow is a much bigger audience and being that it’s our home town it does make it a little scarier, especially with family + friends here.  You have that fear of not messing up.”

Sam: “I used to hate it, when I’d see the Glasgow/Scottish dates on the tour sheet I’d get really stressed.

It’s something I never thought I’d get used to but loading in tonight I felt really comfortable – maybe because I’ve been striving to play here for years since I was a wee guy.”

What’s the plan for you guys over the next few months?

We’ve got a European tour lined up, where we’ll be playing loads of new places, then we’ll have some time off before hitting the Festival circuit. After that we’ll write some new songs, before maybe heading across to America.

How is America?  It’s always the place bands strive to make it…how have you found it?

Sam: I think America is great; I love playing to new people and doing lots of tours, and because of the size of the USA, there is always plenty of both!

Obviously a lot of bands that influenced us are American – my personal favourites being the late Kurt Cobain and Bruce Springsteen.  Their stuff is real gritty and honest, there’s just something they do is really believable.  Every time I hear them it lights a fire underneath me to go write my own stuff.”

Finally, what do you hope to achieve from these next 12 months?

Sam: “I hope to keep progressing, both as a songwriter and a guitarist. I also want to make new friends and keep on riding the rock and roll rollercoaster!”

“It’d be brilliant to be able to translate our success in Scotland to the rest of the UK, but we’ll keep doing it in little steps. I’m a music lover, so just to keep on doing what we’re doing really.

“We do it coz its great fun and if people respond to it in a positive way that’s amazing.”