SHVPES played an absolutely blinding set in Rescue Rooms’ Red Room to a pretty packed out crowd despite it being a cold Wednesday night. The majority of the setlist was taken from new album ‘Greater Than’, but they made sure to play older fan favourites like “State of Mind” and “Skin and Bones” off their debut ‘Pain.Joy.Ecstasy.Despair’ which received the biggest singalongs on the evening. The absolute highlight however came from album closer “Counterfeit” with its iconic lyric “your mother should’ve swallowed you” and the absolute carnage it sparked in the crowd despite the confines of the venue’s layout. “Rain” was another crowd favourite, which had been one of the high points of the record, partly because of the presence of a feature from Trivium’s Matt Heafy, however he was not missed here as frontman Griffin Dickinson’s energy was contagious and spread throughout the room quickly as soon as he entered through the crowd.
Openers Death Blooms were an unexpected surprise, and their brand of metalcore blew me away and I will be sure to keep an eye on them in the future, I definitely felt they deserved more engagement from the crowd. SHVPES absolutely sounded bigger than Red Room tonight and the success of ‘Greater Than’ should propel them to playing bigger venues on their next tour in Nottingham, keep an eye out for them headlining Bodega or Rock City’s Beta in the very near future. I spoke to frontman Griff Dickinson before their show and he had this to say:
Who are your biggest influences?
I don’t really have any direct influences, you occasionally hear something in a petrol station that sounds cool and inspires you to write something. Also Jason Butler (THE FEVER 33/ex Letlive), Zack De La Rocha (Rage Against The Machine) and Jacoby Shaddix (Papa Roach). I felt like I started to sound like that style and took influence from there.
How did you feel when the Architects album was announced for the same date as ‘Greater Than’?
We announced our release date about three months before them, and I was absolutely fuming when they announced ‘Holy Hell’ for the same day. But to be honest it doesn’t make that much difference because we are but a mere speck on their radar at the moment it’s not like we’re competing at all.
How did the feature with Matt Heafy of Trivium come about?
I’ve known him for quite a while through meeting him on tours, and Trivium took us out on our first European tour and at the end of that he offered to do a feature whenever we wanted it, and once we wrote “Rain” I thought it would be cool to stick him on a hip-hop section rather than the metalcore stuff.
Was the writing of ‘Greater Than’ different to writing ‘Pain.Joy.Ecstasy.Despair?’
The first one was a lot of just all of us sitting in a room and writing a riff that we thought was cool, and stick another riff on top of it and I’d do vocals at the end that worked with the guitars and drums, whereas for this one it was much more chord based and worked around the vocals, and I was far more intense in a leading role in writing it and making sure we thought about what would complement the vocals well. We had much more direction this time around and were much more direct, whereas the first album was just us stoned playing guitar at a computer and was all a bit daft.
What’s been your favourite show to date?
Download 2018 was one of the absolute highlights, when you’re a band of our size you don’t get much of a chance to actually connect with people unless you’re doing headline tours – when you’re the support you get to play to a lot of people but it’s difficult to connect with them because they’re not there for you. At Download however everyone was there for us and it was fucking amazing to see everyone going crazy.
Download definitely isn’t my festival to go to but I love to play it because everyone there just fucking loves heavy music, whereas at festivals like Reading it’s way harder to make your mark on the crowd. Slam Dunk is always fucking great as well.
Dream band to tour with?
It changes all the time, but at the moment I would love to tour with Papa Roach, the new album (‘Who Do You Trust?’) they’ve just brought out would work so well with our style. They’re coming to the UK soon and we’d love to be on that tour.
Favourite releases lately?
Papa Roach’s new album, ‘amo’ by Bring Me The Horizon was really cool, but I’ve been listening to loads of old stuff like Black Sabbath, and ‘Vulgar Display of Power’ by Pantera rather than anything new.
Had any thoughts about what you’re going to do next?
We’re already writing and stuff but it’s still very early conceptual stages, but I definitely think it’s going to be a lot less chuggy metalcore stuff but definitely still heavy.
Best band you’ve personally seen live?
One band that springs to mind was Tenacious D just after Pick of Destiny came out, because they had the best stage show ever, an angry cock came down and shot sperm everywhere and the stage changed so much. Aside from that I saw Architects on the ‘All Our Gods Have Abandoned Us’ tour and I was just fucking blown away. Usually when a band plays for an hour and a half I get bored but they were just so incredible.