Interview - Afterbliss

Formed in 2019, Afterbliss’ blend of melodic rock, hard riffs and indie synth-pop have firmly cemented them as one of Dublin's most interesting and exciting acts to emerge in recent years.
- Hi guys and welcome to this interview. Tell us about your latest release Unknown Machine.
Unknown Machine is our fourth release. To date we have released three singles, all of which are included on this EP along with two new tracks. We tried to represent an array of song styles on this EP. We wanted this collection of songs to lay down a marker of what we are all about and the range of our music. We have brighter indie pop songs, darker, broodier numbers, uptempo, slower tempo, a little of everything.

- How would you describe your sound?
We describe our sound as melodic rock. We try to place melody at the centre of everything we do. We mix and match elements of indie rock, indie pop, indie pop, synth rock, dance even a touch of heavy metal! Our sound has been compared to The Killers, Interpol, Muse, Manic Street Preachers and Inhaler.

- What do you write about?
We write about a range of topics, mostly personal experiences. The majority of the lyrics are written by lead singer Evan Cassidy and drummer Ally Pender. They express their thoughts and feelings on life events and experiences through melodic/ poetic songs.

- What do you listen to when you are home?
We listen to similar bands to the ones we mentioned above; other indie rock bands. The five of us listen to quite a range of styles outside of that; classic rock/ metal/ disco/ bluegrass/ traditional, anything really. We like to try and listen to other new Irish bands too. It’s important to stay in touch with the local scene and support each other. We like bands such as Somebody’s Child, Pillow Queens, Keeley, N.O.A.H. Kynsy and All Tvvins.

- Your favourite live performance so far?
Well, we have only played one gig so far, so probably that one! It’s a strange situation to be in, having released three singles and an EP before playing our first gig. We followed up the EP release with a headline show in Whelan’s in Dublin, which we sold out! We had a great night and are very thankful to all of our fans who came to support us. We are looking forward to booking more gigs in the new year!

- Tell us a funny story that happened in studio or on stage
Well at our debut gig, our lead guitarist Alex had an unfortunate incident…. We like to keep our performances pretty high tempo and full of energy, with lots of dancing and jumping around on stage. The energy and intensity was too much for the strap lock pins on Alex’s guitar and one of them snapped, about three songs in. The strap didn’t break, the metal pins holding it on did! He spent the rest of the gig alternating between sitting on the floor, sitting on his amp or awkwardly holding his guitar without a strap!

- Your favourite albums?
Personally (Shane, Bass Player), my favourite albums are; Dark Side Of The Moon by Pink Floyd, Doolittle by The Pixies, Ride The Lightning by Metallica, Photo Finish by Rory Gallagher, Moving Pictures by Rush, This Is The Sea by The Waterboys, Discovery by Daft Punk. That’s just off the top of my head, I’m sure I’m missing more!

- A musician you would like to meet for a beer?
Again, personally speaking, I would like to meet Neil Young for a beer. If I was allowed to choose anyone from rock history though it would be Rory Gallagher. He was one of the driving forces that got me interested in playing music.

- What would you ask for backstage if you were the most important band on earth?
Nothing fancy is coming to mind just yet, probably just pizza and beers! I’m sure if we managed to work our way up to being the most important band in the world we would develop serious notions about ourselves and probably demand quail and caviar washed down with champagne! I’d imagine that’s what Bono asks for….

- What are your plans for the next future?
We have loads planned for the future, we have one or two more surprises for our fans this year, all will be revealed.

Next year we have lots more music to release. We will be planning more gigs, hopefully in more cities than just Dublin. We are in talk with people about getting on the festival circuit as well next summer. Lot’s to be excited about!

If people want to be kept in the loop about all of these things, they can find us on social media - Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, TikTok and YouTube. Don’t be a stranger!

Giovanni Gagliano

Passionate about music I wrote my first article for "Given To Rock" in 2012, reaching now 30K global followers. I am also a musician, gigging around London.

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