Interview With Black Spiders - 17th May 2011
Photo Of Black SpidersJames caught up with the Black Spiders in Wolverhampton to talk about their debut album, current tour, festival plans and much more.

You released your debut album ‘Sons Of The North’ back in February, are you happy with how the album has gone down with your fans and the press?
Yeah I don’t think we could have hoped for anymore because we put it out on our own. All of the reviews seem to be quite amazing; I think one or two were meant to be bad but the actual contents of the review were pretty amazing but then the rating at the end wasn’t that good. What’s really good for us is that we’ve sold a lot of records; we’ve sold a lot more CD’s than the amount of people we’ve played to.

How did you find the whole writing and recording stage of the album and how long did it take you to create?
Well we’ve had a few of these songs for quite a while; we’ve been playing live since December 2008. We did a session for radio one rock show and that’s when our bass player joined because before we had a floating bass player situation but then we’ve known Irwin for a while he’s just been in other bands. It’s not hard; the hardest thing is agreeing when a song is finished or agreeing how a song is going to be structured. We had 2 albums worth of material when we came to record and the ones that got picked were the ones we deemed strongest for our debut album. We had some songs that nearly made it but they went on the second EP instead; there’s still some songs left over but they will be used as bonus tracks and exclusives.

What would you say your favourite tracks from the album are and why?
Hard to say, I quite like “Medusa’s Eyes” because it’s a bit of a different side of the band that we’ve not been able to show before because most of the stuff that we’d done was 30 minute support sets so it never made the set over the more popular songs. I also like “What is Rock Without a Roll?” because we’d had that song for quite a while but not gelled really so we’ve been playing it to see what we can do with it. I really like all of the songs “Blood of the Kings” is a good tune; I’ll stop now because I could go onall day.

Who came up with the artwork for the album?
Ozzy, one of the guitarists did that. He’s really good at art so the band came up with the concept and Ozzy drew it; he also did a lot of our merchandise designs, he drew the skulls for our first EP, he did the goats heads for the “Goats and the Omens” and we wanted to carry on with that because it’s all meant to be representing us. There’s a kind of story going on lyrically between the songs that’s not been fully covered yet so we wanted to get the storyline into the artwork.

You are currently towards the end of your tour with the Japanese Voyeurs, how have the shows been so far?
Shows have been really good, they’ve all been really good but some definitely outstanding shows. We managed to crack Cardiff which was good because we’ve played before and not had a great attendance but this time we did, Exeter was great as well and we’re really looking forward to Wolverhampton because we haven’t played here for around a year.

How did the Japanese Voyeurs end up on the tour with you? And are you fans of their music?
When we announced we were doing dates they got put forward along with a fair few other bands and we had some friends bands we wanted put forward as well so by pure democracy they became the tour support but they haven’t done all the shows. They’re a good band; they’ve got that old kind of Seattle grunge feel about them which I quite like, good new up and coming band, they’re going down quite well and our audience are taking to them nicely.

You are down to play a few festivals this year such as Rock Am Ring, High Voltage, Sonisphere etc, how do you find festival shows compared to playing your normal venues?
Well we’ve played Download and Sonisphere before and bloodstock, we were quite taken back by the amount of people who’d come out to see us. You never know how it’s going to go because you’re competing with somebody so when we played download we weren’t expecting anybody really because when the band before us were on the tent was empty, so we expected the worst but then when we came on the tent was rammed; Similar thing happened at Sonisphere and because our expectations were low when it is a good show it makes it feel that much better. We’re headlining the Jagermeister stage at Sonisphere this year simply because they’ve put a line up together with us in mind of headlining and they’ve been good to us so we want to give a little bit back.

Will you be checking out any bands at these festivals?
Hopefully, I don’t know how long we’re going to be at the festivals yet but I want to see Slash at High Voltage, Rival Sons we want to check out because they’re quite good, Hank from Turbonegro’s new band I want to see and a band called The Treatment as well we want to see.

You have toured with some amazing bands so far and played some huge festivals but has been the best touring experience for you so far?
Touring with Airbourne was probably the best experience; we were in Europe for around 6 weeks at the end of last year which was amazing, there wasn’t 1 bad show then we got carried on to the UK dates with Airbourne which was great too. We’ve had some great 1 off shows too like playing with Ozzy Osbourne at the iTunes festival after winning a MySpace competition and then being handpicked by Ozzy, meeting him and him telling us he was a fan of the band so between Airbourne and that it’s a tossup for the best experience.

If you met someone who had never heard of the Black Spiders what one song would you suggest they listen to to get what the band is all about?
“Stay Down”, basically because it’s got the attitude that the band has carried throughout our stage performance and in the music, it’s what we’re about. You don’t have to conform to what’s expected of you so do what you want pretty much.

What’s your take on the digital revelation killing off the music business?
Well I guess there’s a need for it; it’s a big thing into today’s culture wanting everything instantly so it’s good to have things digitally. We love the physical stuff though it’s why we had vinyl’s printed because that’s how we got into music through older siblings and stuff so we appreciate that side of things too. The music industry is in a bit of a state right now so we’re not really sure what’s going to happen, I think CD’s and vinyl’s will be around for a long time yet because people don’t realise that the bit difference between a digital file and a CD, and between a CD and vinyl the quality is improved even further.

Where do you hope to see The Black Spiders in a year’s time?
Hopefully with another album out, playing bigger venues, we want to have our album out in America by then and we want to release “KISS Tried to Kill Me” as a single and depending on those 2 depends on how the years going to go I suppose. We’ve all got aspirations of getting bigger but we’ve just got to carry on and keep going the way we are.

One last random question that we ask every band, if you could be an animal out of a zebra or Giraffe which one would you be and why?
What a strange question I like it though... Zebra, I prefer stripes to spots.

Thanks for your time is there a message for your fans reading this?
Thanks for the support and we hope to keep putting out more stuff for you, keep your eye out for “KISS Tried to Kill Me” as a single. See you at the festivals and hopefully do more touring before the end of the year!

Interview By James Webb
 Band Members

Pete 'Spider' Spiby
Andy 'Ozzy' Lister
Mark 'The Dark Shark' Thomas
'Tiger' Si Atkinson
Adam 'The Fox' Irwin
 Latest Releases
Black Spiders - Sons Of The North
Release Date - 7th February 2011
1. Stay Down
2. KISS Tried To Kill Me
3. Just Like A Woman
4. Easy Peasy
5. Blood Of The Kings
6. St Peter
7. Mans Ruin
8. Medusas Eyes
9. Si El Diablo
10. What Goods A Rock Without A Roll?
 Band Related Links
Black Spiders Myspace