Jack Rocks Seven with Bang Bang Romeo
Brands and bands sometimes make uneasy bedfellows – but there is one trademark that screams ‘rawk’n’roll’ like no other…and that’s Jack Daniels.
The Jack Rocks Stage has been a regular fixture at festivals for the last few years. And it’s been the place to make a b-line for if you want to crank up the excitement levels a notch or two.
This year the team have hooked up with increasingly legendary live promoters, This Feeling, to take seven hand-picked bands on a tour of their stages at The Great Escape, TRNSMT, The Isle of Wight, and Reading & Leeds.
We were lucky enough to see all seven play a packed industry showcase in the cellar of an East London pub as they launched their Tennessee Whiskey-fuelled UK excursion. And we can vouch for the fact that every act rightly deserves its place on the bill.
So, because you may well have never have heard of many of these acts (which is sort of the point of the exercise) we thought we’d put seven questions to each of them so you kind get an idea of what makes them tick.
Here it’s the turn of Bang Bang Romeo to go under the spotlight…if you want a taster why not check out ‘Johanesburg’…
- Describe the band as a whole and your music in seven words
Theatrical Soulful Dramatic Tarantino Holy Preaching Nectar.
[This pretty much nails it. Ed]
2. Use seven words to describe each member of the band.
Anastasia: Loud, Emotional, Fiery , Feather Adorned Queen Bitch.
Ross: Guitar Playing Song Writing Natural Born Astronaut
Joel: Bleached Blonde Wild eyed Giant Sassy Princess.
Rich: Boring, Sarcastic, Hits Stuff, Artsy Fartsy, Boring.
[So boring they started repeating themselves, Ed]
Left to right: Anastasia, Ross, Rich, Joel
- You have a half-hour festival slot to play. Which seven songs would you choose to perform and in what order…six of your own and one cover version?
We’re currently locked up away in the studio recording our debut album, which we are all really excited about! But that means we aren’t allowed to give too much away regarding our sets this summer. For the cover though it would have to be something grand, theatrical and over the top that we could really put our own spin on, like something by Queen maybe? There’s nothing worse than a cover version that just sounds like a cheap version of the original.
[Absolutely no gags here about ‘Fat Bottom Girls’ – you have been warned. Personally I’d love to hear Anastasia turn her operatic talents to a version of ‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’, but only because that was the first single I ever bought, Ed]
- Which seven bands or artists have been your biggest influences? Of these which is your biggest hero and why?
Radiohead, Fleetwood Mac, Shirley Bassey, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Jefferson Airplane, Jack White, and Quentin Tarantino soundtracks.
I’d have to say the Tarantino soundtracks have probably been the biggest influence on us as that sound has always been the first thing picked out to describe us by the likes of Huw Stephens (BBC R1), NME, and John Kennedy (Radio X). We just love the whole cinematic & theatrical contrasting romantic and violent imagery and the way this provokes an emotional response in a viewer / listener. We always aim to encapsulate this same drama in our live performance and songs. It’s completely come about by chance from us all being massive fans and we often watch his films together in the studio.
[We can’t argue with any of that, Ed]
- What are your seven steps to success as a band?
Work hard, Be on time. Make music YOU love. Have fun doing it. Don’t try and chase a trend. And, finally, support the scene and get in the zone by supporting your fellow bands! You are all in the same boat and in this together! This Feeling / Jacks Rocks is a perfect example of this amazing family spirit and where it can get you.
[New bands take heed – this is good advice, Ed.]
- Can you each share the seventh-to-last photo you have taken on your phone and say a few words about it?
Anastasia: My picture I took from the top of the Notre Dame in Paris a couple of weeks back. I was shocked by how much the gargoyle looked like Joel sat so close to the edge with little to nothing on overlooking the Parisian landscape! Haha…no, seriously though, it’s stunning. The contrast between the horror and beauty in this view gives me goose-bumps. I can still feel the Notre Dame moving from under our feet with the wind. Can’t wait to play Paris one day with my boys. It’s such a beautiful place!
Joel: My seventh photo is of us with Findlay in the photo booth from the Moth Club show the other night… I think this just shows what a narcissist I am haha. No but seriously it was such a cool venue and a wicked show, Findlay were fierce and it was amazing to finally catch up and hang with them a couple years after we first met backstage at the JD Rocks Isle of Wight Stage we were both playing.
Rich: My photo is my working drawing of our new logo which I created after we brainstormed a few ideas involving moths, vultures, butterflies and roses. The idea was to try and combine the romance and elegance of a butterfly with something more carnal and violent, to coincide with the running themes in our music. It took a few days to piece together but after some terrible scribbles and a bit of tidying up we got the image for our new logo.
[You saw it here first J Ed]
Ross: We were on our way to a gig not so long ago, and drove through some woods, which we thought looked a decent setting for a band picture, standard. At the time the sat nav said we were 20mins from the venue. After a couple of photos we immediately regretted the decision because when we got back in the car, the sat nav was saying 2 hours from destination! We’d gone in to some flight of the navigator, Blair Witch, upside down time warp of a nightmare forest!! If you go down to the woods today…don’t get out the car. We only just made the gig by the skin of our teeth.
- Seven is meant to be a lucky number…what do each member of the band use as a lucky charm?
Believe it or not we actually developed a superstition playing The J.D Rocks stage’s at Leeds & Y Not Festival last summer!
We all have a shot of Jack Daniels just before we go on stage. They were probably our two favourite festival shows to date and we were blown away by the size of the crowds and the reaction to our set. It was electric! So the tradition has now stuck and we never go on stage without a shot of Jack to fire us up to perform!
[And no, they weren’t paid to say that…they promise us, Ed.]
You can follow the exploits of Bang Bang Romeo by hanging out on their Facebook page: