A band that MIMR has followed very closely over the last few years and despite the obvious changes which have been forced on us all this year they have a released a record up there as one of the most thrilling listens that MIMR has had the pleasure to be engrossed in.
We spoke to Gareth from London punk act USA Nails about ‘Character Stop’, 2021 plans and missing greggs at service stations
MIMR: Hey there, fantastic to have you on the blog, amongst all the negative crap that’s happened this year, how has your year been and has it changed anything about being a band?
Gareth: We were lucky enough to have Character Stop recorded at the back end of last year (i.e. pre lockdowns) so we’ve been able to focus on sorting the release for that, all the admin and videos and artwork and logisitics and stuff, so we’ve had plenty to get on with. In some ways it’s been quite useful as we’ve had more time to sort all that bollocks instead of playing gigs and all that boring stuff (some sarcasm for you there you’re welcome).
MIMR: Here at MIMR we can’t stop listening to the new record, tell us all about it’s production and was the release in anyway affected by the pandemic?
Gareth: We we had to cancel a US tour in April, and all gigs in general, so haven’t been able to launch it in the way we would have normally, but the stuff behind the scenes has all worked ok. The labels and dsitributors and such have been getting on with it. There was a bit of a delay at the European pressing plant but it was only a couple of weeks late, so could have been a lot worse. All the recording/mixing/mastering was sorted pre-lockdown so we didn’t have to worry to much about it in that respect.
MIMR: Now the omission of live music has been the obvious big change to everyday life for everyone in the music industry and the fans too. What’s the one thing you miss about playing live?
Gareth: We’ve chatted extensively as a band about this, the answer is – everything. The socialising, the travelling, the greggs at service stations, even sleeping on shit floors. Gigs are the essence of band life, they are a big positive that balance out all the hard work in between. Without them there’s a lot less to look forward to, and a lot less to enjoy about being in a band. Not to mention the fact that it reduces our income.
MIMR: With a vaccine on the horizon, fingers crossed 2021 will return to some sort of normality, do you guys have an idea of what the band will be up to next year?
Gareth: We have some shows tentatively booked for Spring next year, I’m guessing they’ll be allowed to go ahead but with limited attendance. I think I read something about indoor venues operating at 50% capacity? Most of the gigs we play are only half full anyway HAR HAR.
MIMR: During the lockdown period how have you passed the time away from any music business?
Gareth: I’ve been trying to teach myself a bit more about guitars, so I built a couple, and that’ll be useful for doing my own maintenance on the road in future. Steven and his wife had their first kid last Autumn so he’s been enjoying getting to spend more time being a dad, Tom got furloughed and is currently focussing on helping a local take away business in Haggerston stay afloat (The Duke Of Wellington), Dan worked in events so has been hit hard, but thankfully has found other bits of work along the way.
MIMR: What’s the one thing you wish for this xmas and do you have any new year resolutions?
Gareth: I wish for everyone to be healthy and happy this Christmas. My new year resolution is to stop saying “yes” to everything because I always have more on my to do list than I can cope with.
MIMR: Thanks for chatting to us at MIMR, loving the new record and all the best in 2021.
Gareth: Thanks for having us/me and for the kind words.
Check out recent single ‘I Don’t Own Anything’ taken from ‘Character Stop’ record here. Also follow link to their bandcamp too to purchase it, it’s one of the top records of 2020