The Black Vines are all veterans of the Barnsley music scene. Although the band are just about to launch their second full length album. Individually, they have written, released and performed much more through various other outfits. Stuburt & Moon, Grande Casino, Blofeld, Mr Moon, Breakhorse, Wild Turkey, Cold Feet… just a few of the bands they have featured in. With such varied musical backgrounds, I wanted to see what influences each member of Black Vines brings to the table. Here’s what they had to say…

The mangled road trips of ‘Desert Sessions’ was a rough template for the band. Four seperate characters writing and jamming to form albums that are more like mixtapes than just one artist. Due to my age… the golden era of 91/92 seattle still rings true; Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains. But also vocally I’ve been into Motown and Stax sound since a kid. Marvin Gaye and Curtis Mayfield. Stevie Wonder too. Groove based heavy soul.

Black Sabbath’s Paranoid. Even though we’re all pretty fond of the Seattle scene and most of us love late QOTSA and Foos etc, but I think the Sabs influence is in the rest of the band’s stuff too to an extent.
As is…Sex Pistol’s Never Mind the Bollocks. Love the simplicity of Steve Jones’ guitar and the poppy riffs that are given an edge with Lydon’s lyrical sneer.
Lastly though I’d have to be obvious as fook and mention The Beatles; from their raw appreciation for riffs and harmonies to the experimental twiddlings, they pretty much took the journey in eight years that the rest of us have wanted to travel since.

Right, albums that made a big impression on me? I’ll have Never Mind The Bollocks, Live Through This and Kill ’em All. I would say that as an influence on the way I play bass though that big ones are Billy Gould on early Faith No More, Joey DeMaio from Manowar who if you get past his cheesy lyrics and ridiculous posturing has an immense sound and of course the mighty Cliff Burton. Also gotta have Lemmy and Entwistle in there too. Plus a splash of many early punk/new wave bands and also Motown stuff. Bizarrely one of my all time favourite bands would be Sleater Kinney who don’t even have a bass player. Go figure that one out!

My 1st love is grunge. I love everything it stands for. Don’t get me wrong, I love a bit of Thrash and Alternative Metal, but all that macho bullshit gets a bit boring and I’m not really one for ‘look how fast I can play’, and I’m just not that angry. Anything Dave Grohl drumming wise (although do love Foos too obviously), so Nirvana/QOTSA. Love to hit hard, get sweaty and play to the song not just to show boat (although some of Grohls playing on Like Clockwork album is amazing, he’s defo bin practicing!).
Also love that rough and ready sound, not too over produced and pleanty of analogue warmth. I listen to plenty other genres too. Some of my influences are from Hip Hop (I’m in it for the breaks and turntablism, rapping has to be modest and meaningful for it to do anything for me), breakbeat, drum n bass etc. I hear beats and fills sampled from anywhere and everywhere which has gotta be a good thing.

The second Black Vines album The Return of the Splendid Bastards is released in March. They play a special album launch show at The Cedar Rooms on 21st March.

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