Cambridgeshire band The Routine recently released their best work to date - their single 'Tell Me Is This Something (You Want To Do?).' We chatted with Ben Nunn from the band.
OSM: Where and when did The Routine form? Who is in the band and what do they play?
The Routine formed at the tail end of 2019 after the breakup of some of the members previous bands. Ben, Ben & Mark put out a call for a singer/songwriter to join their ranks and build a new band that was focused more around the rockier side of the indie spectrum. Liam answered the advert which was posted on Join My Band, and after a few rehearsals, the decision was made to officially move forward together as a band. Since then, the band have endured a pandemic but kept active by building a strong catalogue of original, upbeat and hard-hitting material with an aim to get venues moving across the UK. Since the re-opening of society, the band have giggled nationally and have played alongside the likes of Scouting For Girls and Sophie Ellis-Bexter.
The Band consists of:
Liam Palmer: Lead Vocals & Rhythm Guitar
Ben Taylor: Lead Guitar & Backing Vocals
Ben Nunn: Bass Guitar & Backing Vocals
Mark Thomson: Drums & Samples
OSM: Your new single, ‘Tell Me Is This Something (You Want To Do?)’ is out now. What was the general songwriting process and are there any interesting stories around the recording?
The new single has been in existence for a little while now but the idea initially stemmed from Liam playing the opening riff in aa rehearsal session. From there the song actually formed pretty organically and built itself more or less. The general feel of the song was pretty good but the addition of Ben Taylor’s lead lick really helped the song move up to the next level in terms of overall sound and feel. The recording process for the song was fairly easy especially with the guidance of John Metcalfe at Crooks Hall Studio. He really locked the song in and made it show that all the key elements were front and centre in terms of the recording.
OSM: From your point of view, what is the song about, what is its message?
I don’t really think the song has a particularly deep and meaningful message myself. I just think it is a bit of a feel good, get up and dance, type song. Also, at the risk of sounding pretentious, I always believe that it doesn’t really matter what the song is about to us. It’s all about what the listener read it as and what it means to them. I guess the question back to you would be what do you think the song is about?
OSM: I think it is about a relationship in turmoil. A wanting for something that is out of reach.
What challenges have you faced since launching the band?
The big one is obviously the pandemic. Aside from not being able to play and work in the way that we normally would the situation presented other issues in feeling isolated and sometimes like we would never actually be able to get out there and showcase ourselves. I think it’s fair to say that we, like a lot of other people, struggled a bit in terms of our mental states, and this caused friction and tension. I think that if we had a few months, gigs under our belts before the pandemic hit, we might have had a different approach but that’s something we will never know. Fortunately, all those issues are resolved and we have been able to get out there and do what we love for our fans.
OSM: What are your plans for the year ahead?
Ideally we want to continue to build momentum through performing as many shows as we can. We are in the process of working on new recordings and continue to look to push ourselves out of our comfort zones in that aspect. There may be some other irons in the fire in terms of music videos and some other cool things but that needs to stay under wraps for now!
OSM: If you could change anything about the industry what would it be?
The main thing I would change is how opportunities come around for new bands and performers. Overall, it is quite difficult for new bands starting out to be given opportunities which puts them in a position to get maximum exposure from potential new fans. For example, the days seem to be gone whereby a touring band would have a local support open for them which I think is a shame. There is a lot of fantastic and unreal talent out there that deserves the opportunities and chances but will not get the due to the cliquey nature of the industry and labels in particular.
OSM: If you could share the stage with another band or performer who would it be?
For me it would have to be Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park. I think the guy is a musical genius and the band has been pretty much my biggest inspiration for getting into music and performing in the way I have. I think that being able to share a stage with Mike or the band would be unreal and would offer the opportunity for us to learn so, so much.
OSM: Who are some of the main influences of your music?
As a band, we have a pretty eclectic set of influences and styles. These range from Foo Fighters to Pendulum, Led Zeppelin to Taylor Swift, and pretty much anything and everything in between as long as it is good.
OSM: What do you enjoy most about being in a band?
I personally enjoy the camaraderie and the ability to create something unique and personal to us as a group. I also really like the fact that we can share our art with people and that it can mean something individually to them which is completely different from what it means to us.
OSM: What songs are on your playlist right now, which songs are you into at the moment?
Personally, I have been listening to a lot of You Me At Six, Deftones and the odd bit of Elgar as well as a lot of Miami Vice era tunes.