Purple Divide’s stature over the last year has continued to grow , but 2013 promises much more from the precocious talent. With a new EP just being finished, it seemed like a good time to look over the past year and to the future.
Support slots with Fatherson seem to have bookended your year (just about), how do you think you guys have come along during the time?
We have definitely grown as a band. We certainly feel a lot more confident. I think we have more stage presence too. It opened the door to so many more opportunities and more people got to hear us. We made some great friends along the journey this year and of course we are very lucky and grateful to have been given the chance to play with such a great band like Fatherson.
This year has been a busy one for you guys, what are the achievements and gigs that have stood out for you guys?
There has been so many! Belladrum is one for sure. It was only an acoustic set but the turn out and the reception we got was incredible, a lot more than we anticipated. We were just overwhelmed. It was a really fun set too, we had some friends in the crowd singing along and even better, some new faces singing along!
Releasing our first EP is also a highlight. We were lucky enough to have it done with the help of a friend and to finally release our music to people was a great feeling. It even made the shelf of the HMV store in Inverness which was surreal especially when you consider that it had been recorded in the front room of Connor’s house! We could not be more grateful to Dale from Karma Lounge (formerly Nova Bar) for helping us get it there.
Even the Summer Showcase at the Ironworks is a highlight. It was the opening event of the Summer Showcase series and it just so happened that a couple of the original line up pulled out so we headlined that night, it was special. YMI tour was also great. To meet other bands and Radio 1 Dj Ally MacCrae and spend a few days with them was nice. We learnt a lot on that tour.
You have had a couple of acoustic spots and even starting the Summer Showcase with an acoustic song, is that something that you hope to continue to pursue in the future?
I don’t think it will ever be a main focus but it is nice to do some things acoustically now and again. It can be nice to hear songs stripped back. It is how most of our material starts of at the writing stage so it is nice to revisit how they use to be. We did record some acoustic tracks for the new EP so maybe we will do more who knows!
When we first talked to you guys, you described a fantastic eclectic mix of personal influences (from Led Zepplin to Trivium), do you think your influences have further evolved?
I think our tastes have grown up and expanded, not changed by any means. There is a constant stream of new styles coming around these days that sound so great, and I think that these can do nothing but help evolve your style. We have listened a lot more to unsigned artists too. I guess we can relate to these artists and feel like we are on par with them.
Looking back on the release of “Trapped”, in hindsight how do you the view your debut EP and what have you learnt as you start work on the follow up?
I suppose we have learnt that time is on our side, there is no need to rush things. As good as it was to release our music to people, if we could go back we would probably spend more time on “Trapped”. This time round with the new material we are taking things a bit more slowly. We will take time and work on our plans including things like artwork and a title etc. We feel that once the tracks are done we don’t have to release it as quickly as possible. There is still going be a music scene in the next 5 years. Not that we will take that long on it but you catch my drift! Also with spending more time on it, it gives us a chance to make it exactly what we want. We won’t release it until we are completely satisfied with it.
How is the new recording coming along at the moment?
We just finished the recording sessions last Friday. We got the tracks finished and we feel pretty good about them! We put a lot of effort in over the 3 days at the studio and worked away at the tracks until we were happy.
Where is the material coming from for the tracks, is it revisited material or completely new?
Some of the stuff is revisited, but revamped at the same time. For instance, we have brought back some of the first songs we wrote that are seldom played any more, and the style has completely changed so they don’t even sound anywhere close to what they used to, but in a good way!. Some of the other tracks have been written over the past year or so, they’re new-ish. There’s tracks in there people having been crying out to be recorded so hopefully those people will be pleased!
What can you tell us about the content of the forthcoming EP?
With this EP we wanted to make it try stand out. It is easy enough to keep recording some tracks and release EP after EP and so on, so we have gone for what we are calling a “Double EP”. There will be 5 tracks on each side, one side will feature the full on electric stuff we play live and the other side will feature acoustic tracks some of which we played at Belladrum and the Market bar this year. It gives people a chance to hear more of what we are about, what we can do and it shows versatility too. It certainly shows a maturity within the band compared to the last EP and I think we have now established the sound that we are going for on the electric side of things.
What’s the plan for releasing the EP?
We have no dates set for the release of the EP. We haven’t even got a name for it yet! At the moment we are looking at maybe Summer next year for its release, maybe before who knows. It would be nice to do another EP launch maybe at IG:LU again or anywhere else in Inverness. We would like to plan it well and make it special.
Anything else you would like to plug?
If you haven’t already check out out Purple Divide’s Facebook page
Our debut EP “Trapped” is available for FREE download just now.
(Non-credited photos by Frank Finlayson)