Henry Tremain Pennines formed in 2006 at the end of a very dark period for me. One of my closest and dearest friends, David Thrope, had passed away early that year after a motorcycle accident. Dave was the bass player in my previous band saleontomorrow. Music was at the centre of mine and Dave’s relationship. At the time he was the only person I knew who shared the same taste in music. He was, in my eyes, an exceptional talent. His writing would compliment perfectly all other elements in the song – he had the intuition to do exactly the right thing, yet somehow the unexpected thing. I guess I assumed we’d be working on music together until we were old dudes. After his death I was unable to pick up a guitar, the thought of making music in his absence just made me too sad.
The start of Pennines, for me, really represents the beginning of the end of that period, and the start of me trying to get back on my feet…
Mike Wightman After saleontomorrow ended, Henry looked crushed every time I saw him (understandably) and I recall he’d turned down offers to join other bands. Tristan & I were airing our musical frustrations one day on the phone together and we both confessed to a wish to start a band with Henry, so we set about putting this together… As Hank [Henry] already mentioned, this was a definite attempt to get him playing again as he was a talented little man and playing with some new people might assist with his funk.
“Saleontomorrow had been reasonably earnest, so it was great to do something pretty casual. I’m not sure whether this was a genuine motivation, but I felt that part of their reasoning behind starting [Pennines] was to see me doing something creative again, to help me out of my funk. It was the perfect therapy either way.” – Henry Tremain
Tristan Holden I don’t recall us ever discussing influences but we were pretty keen on doing something clean sounding and melody driven. The original setup was actually guitar, keys, bass and drums but I shifted to playing guitar about 6 months into us playing together.
Henry Tremain I took some guitar lessons when I was very young, but that didn’t last long as I was too hyperactive and lacking in patience to handle learning to sight-read, or deal with the boring music we were supposed to be learning to play (I think I was asked not to come back).
A little later I got some piano lessons with this awesome old painter named Diane Mark. She was not too forceful about learning in one particular way and encouraged me playing around on the instrument. She introduced me to the music of Dave Brubeck after I was playing around with a pattern in 5/4 (which at the time meant nothing to me), she pointed out that I was playing in 5, explained what a time signature was and how to count it, and then played me ‘Take 5‘. Dave Brubeck remains one of my biggest influences.
At about 12 or 13 me and my friends from the neighbourhood decided to form a band. I got stuck on bass, as the other guys already knew how to play guitar and drums. Everything I know about playing guitar I learned through learning to play the bass.
“The first few practices were really great, we all gelled together straight away and I think we wrote some of my favourite stuff back when we first started out.” – Tristan Holden
Mike Wightman Jem, Tristan & I all played in another band (Fun!Yeah!) who ended up on a few bills with saleontomorrow, I had also put them on some shows I was promoting as their guitar player, Alan, would often ask for his bands to play. I knew the other guys in that band but don’t ever recall meeting Henry until that point. I later bumped into him one afternoon in Norwich when he was handing out flyers for a show he was putting on with Mock Orange and liked him instantly (although I didn’t go to the show – I don’t recall if it was cancelled or if I’m just too lazy, but I definitely haven’t seen Mock Orange).
Henry Tremain Saleontomorrow had been reasonably earnest, so it was great to do something pretty casual. It wasn’t going to be anything too serious as they already had Fun! Yeah! going on, and I’m not sure whether this was a genuine motivation, but I felt that part of their reasoning behind starting the project was to see me doing something creative again, to help me out of my funk. It was the perfect therapy either way.
Mike Wightman We practised for a year before we played any shows. I recall feeling ridiculously out of my depth during those first practices as I had no idea of what I was doing (in fact, this continued throughout Pennines’ entire existence).
Tristan Holden The first few practices were really great, we all gelled together straight away and I think we wrote some of my favourite stuff back when we first started out.
We’d always rehearse on a Saturday night and do 6 hours so we’d have as much time to remember what we’d come up with as possible (we’d end up recording practices later as we’d usually forget bits anyway).
Jem Eaves I feel so fortunate to have grown up in Norwich during that time (probably 2000 – 2008-ish). It was so wonderful. Mike was a big shot concert promoter for much of that period, at a venue called The Ferryboat mostly. Mike just absolutely knows/knew how to do a good gig. There were several other great Norwich promoters too…
Between them they treated us to loads of really really good bands, and a few less good, obvs. Between us, we made a lot of friends. By the time Pennines began though, Norwich had quietened. People had moved on and moved away. My goodness though, my heart fills with joy when I think back to some of the nights at the Ferryboat. Koufax.
“I definitely see things like EQ, reverb, distortion and other audio effects often as ornamentation, and in the words of Adolf Loos; “ornament is crime”. Or at least, ornament is whimsical, and with it often an expression of the current fashion or trend, and so – to avoid ornament is often to avoid having your work date stamped with the fashion of that time.” – Henry Tremain
Tristan Holden Norwich had a pretty awesome scene at one point, Mike was putting on shows under the name ‘Fair Do’s Gigs’ and we had bands like Koufax, The Dismemberment Plan and Million Dead play at the Ferryboat (which has been closed for some time now), plus we had some great local bands like Long Live, Blue is the New Black…
Henry Tremain The music scene in Norwich was, at one time, a real hot bed of awesome music. Mike was at the very heart of it, as he booked all the underground (emo/indie/hardcore) touring bands, bands that wouldn’t ordinarily have any reason to come to Norwich. Saleontomorrow played our first show for Mike when he booked the Dugong and Kelly 8 tour at The Ferryboat Inn (home to the Norwich DIY scene).
By the time Pennines started gigging, the Norwich scene had kind of cooled. When Mike stopped Fair Do’s things slowed, and when The Ferryboat finally closed, the energy and vibrancy of the scene had sort of died. The only bands I can think of still kicking around at that point would be Maths and Hair Traffic Control (later to become Olympians). Prior to that point Norwich was an amazing place to be in a band – so many great bands – so many great shows!! The Count [Tristan] had been in an awesome band called Grand Prix ’86. Jerry had been in my all time favourite Norwich band: Blue Is The New Black. Other great norwich bands include: Open Letters, Days Ago, Our last Hero, Kneehigh, Long Live, When Ghost’s Use Knives, We Close Our Eyes, Mock Heroic…….
“I feel so fortunate to have grown up in Norwich during that time (probably 2000 – 2008-ish). It was so wonderful. Mike was a big shot concert promoter for much of that period, at a venue called The Ferryboat mostly. Mike just absolutely knows/knew how to do a good gig.”
– Jem Eaves
Mike Wightman There was also a great little scene building around the Queen Charlotte after a dull couple of years… I had started to put on one or two shows again – although not with the same frequency or enthusiasm as I’d had in the past – and a few others were making sure there was always something to look forward to.
Tristan Holden When we started I think it was around 2006 and a lot of people seemed to move away to London so things felt a bit different. We didn’t play live for around a year after we started practicing so we were fairly rehearsed, the early shows seemed to go down pretty well.
Mike Wightman The early shows were a lot of fun. I don’t recall if Tristan was still playing Rhodes at the time or if he’d fully given it up for guitars, but our first show was one I put on with Frank Turner at the Queen Charlotte in Norwich which was on the same day Call of Duty 4 came out, or thereabouts, as I spent most of my day playing it.
Despite having practised for a year we were an instrumental outfit at that point, I can’t remember if we even rehearsed with vocals before we played our first London show… We did it again so it couldn’t have been that horrific.
Jem Eaves One of our first concerts was in Oxford, I think. I think we were late. We usually were/are. Hi-Tec Silver Shadows. I set the drums up on a rug on the stage but I neglected to put the drum stool on the rug too. 30 seconds into the first song, the rug and the drums were somewhere else. A Whole New World. That incident really set the tone for me as a drummer.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? Lima Oscar LimaSelf released5:20
Open Closed OpenSelf released4:26
PART TWO (subtitles)
“Yeah, we would spend a lot of time in the van, which is always the best time. Whether you’re laughing your stupid face off, or fearing for your life because no one has had any sleep and the sun is coming up whilst there’s heavy snow coming down but the windows are wide open because you need to stay awake and cars are sliding off the road, it’s always the best.”
– Mike Wightman
Mike Wightman Hank moved to London but we chose to continue practicing in Norwich, and so he pretty much took that on himself. The only time his world ever really crept into ours was on the first few days on tour with Hot Club de Paris (have you listened to ‘Hey Housebrick‘ recently? Holy cow it’s still an amazing song. Such great dudes) where he would have to travel back after each show to work each day. As someone who likes to sleep and have a reasonable amount of sense in my world, I have simply NO IDEA of how he did this without going crazy. Daft, daft sod. This carried on until we hit London, where I referred to a sound check as a “sound test”, which I have yet to live down, and things got normal again.
Henry Tremain Yeah, my life was a royal shitting mess (mainly self-inflicted) – so when my old buddy Mischa called me to say he had a spare room going in his flat in London, I jumped at the opportunity to get out of Norwich. I moved down not long after we had started Pennines – I was enjoying the band so much that I still managed to get the train up most weekends, for 6 hours of mainly drinking tea in a rehearsal studio (best times). Though the commuting did end up costing a fortune in the long run (I worked a second job on Saturdays which mainly covered the cost). As for getting about to gig’s, the boys would drive down in a couple of cars with the gear and I’d get the train from London and meet them there. The Count was driving this Honda CRX sports car for a time – it was pretty funny seeing him pull amps and guitars out of that tiny back seat. We did rent a van for our tour with Hot Club De Paris – though I couldn’t get the time off work for the first week, so ended up traveling to and from London on the train day after day.
Tristan Holden Personally, travelling to shows with the other dudes was always my favourite bit about being in the band, and it’s what I miss the most. Was always awesome to put some good stuff on the stereo and hit the road.
Mike Wightman Yeah, we would spend a lot of time in the van, which is always the best time. Whether you’re laughing your stupid face off, or fearing for your life because no one has had any sleep and the sun is coming up whilst there’s heavy snow coming down but the windows are wide open because you need to stay awake and cars are sliding off the road, it’s always the best.
Tristan Holden I had the nicest guitar setup in Pennines (Fender Lead III and 1968 Fender Dual Showman) and I was always loathed to put anything between the guitar and the amp other than the lead. I’m not an audiophile by any means and I’m not that clued up on electronics, but I just figured it was traditionally intended to be as simple as that. In terms of what we were trying to achieve, I don’t think we consciously set out to do anything other than make interesting music that we enjoyed playing and would listen to ourselves. We recorded everything ourselves which just seemed to make the most sense, and we gave away everything we ever recorded.
“I don’t think we consciously set out to do anything other than make interesting music that we enjoyed playing and would listen to ourselves. We recorded everything ourselves which just seemed to make the most sense, and we gave away everything we ever recorded.” – Tristan Holden
Henry Tremain Yeah man, one of the things I loved about Pennines was the absolute lack of bullshit – we just plugged into our amps and that was it. The songs were simply about the harmonies and the rhythms that we played, and any change in dynamics were a result of the way we played. For me there was a real integrity and honesty to playing straight up like that, not relying on effects or distortion. I definitely see things like EQ, reverb, distortion and other audio effects often as ornamentation, and in the words of Adolf Loos; “ornament is crime”. Or at least, ornament is whimsical, and with it often an expression of the current fashion or trend, and so – to avoid ornament is often to avoid having your work date stamped with the fashion of that time. Not that that was really much of a concern with Pennines. Pennines was about writing some riffs, finding those riffs a home in a song, and more importantly, hanging out with some mates and drinking tea.
Jem Eaves I am not a drummer. If I’m anything I’m a guitar player. I’m left handed but right footed, which is annoying. Playing drums in Pennines sounded like a ton o’ fun because of the glorious dudes involved. I also remember being conscious that I moved very little in my everyday life, so getting some exercise seemed like a good idea. At this stage I had forgotten how much exercise you get when you play the drums.
Mike Wightman I played bass. Not Geddy Lee bass, Pete Wentz bass.
PART THREE (subtitles)
Tristan Holden The guys in Fago.Sepia are some of the nicest people I’ve ever met and I genuinely shed a few tears when that tour was over. We met them when we played together in London and instantly clicked, and after we’d both played we ended up having a few drinks together. The idea of a tour came up and a few months later we got an email from them asking if we’d like to join them on a few dates in France and the UK. The tour was easily one of the best experiences I’ve had in a band, the folks in France were so accommodating and despite only knowing the most basic French we had some amazing shows and met some lovely people.
Henry Tremain That tour was max fun!
Our good buddy Bob D’Mello from the band Super Tennis filled in on drums for the French dates, as Jerry couldn’t get the time off work. We did one rehearsal with two drum kits set up, and Bob and Jerry played Jerry’s beats together in synchronous. It was so much fun to watch them together – it was like watching two dudes doing some sort of elaborate dance routine – one of my favourite practises ever! Bob learnt the songs straight away like the genius he is, and did the tour after only having the one practise. Bob now plays with me and The Count in our other band
“We may have had two practices, or it may just have been that the one we had felt really long, I can’t remember, but we were soon off over to France to play. From the ferry over to St Malo I can remember chinning tons of Guinness, Tristan running around in an empty swimming pool, loads of French kids having a disco, going to bed at about 5am and then the ship docking about an hour later. Horrendous.”
– Bob D’Mello
Bob D’Mello I was sat in my flat in London one night early in 2009, no doubt doing something really highbrow and interesting, when I got a call from Mike. I can’t recall if I’d met Mike before but I’d seen pennines play, met Henry a few times and was totally into them. I remember watching them with my friend Tom and before they played Open Closed Open he nudged me and said ‘watch the drummer in this song’. I couldn’t get over how Jerry could both write and play those drums…they’re bonkers, so good.
Anyway, mike called to see if I would be able to play with pennines on a tour to France as Jem couldn’t get the time off work. My first instinct was to say no. I didn’t know the guys, the music struck me as being difficult to learn in a short space of time and being a natural pessimist I thought it would be a disaster. After speaking with Mike for a couple of minutes I naturally said yes.
Henry sent me the recordings they had, I listened to them nonstop for a week and then had a practice up in Norwich. Jem had the patience of a saint as we went through the songs for a few hours. There were a couple of things I noticed most about the session; how good they all were on their instruments and how much tea they all drank. They’d stop every twenty minutes for a cup, a sit down and a flick through Metal Hammer.
We may have had two practices, or it may just have been that the one we had felt really long, I can’t remember, but we were soon off over to France to play. From the ferry over to St Malo I can remember chinning tons of Guinness, Tristan running around in an empty swimming pool, loads of French kids having a disco, going to bed at about 5am and then the ship docking about an hour later. Horrendous.
“For some reason we all started talking in fake geordie accents, which we held for the rest of the tour – I think we thought it would be funny as the French dude’s wouldn’t know we were speaking any differently.” – Henry Tremain
Meeting the fago.sepia guys was great, they’re such total sweethearts, very warm and inviting, hospitable and amazing musicians too. They picked us up, made us crepes and cider and put us up in their amazing farmhouse with their amazing dogs. When we got there we were so tired and exhausted, almost hysterical…I remember mike breaking out his brand new sleeping bag, leaving the room and when he came back one of the dogs, woofy, had gone to sleep in it, perfectly curled up. Tristan, Henry and I were crying with laughter, genuinely one of the funniest things…just thinking about it now is cracking me up.
The tour was amazing; we met some totally rad people, played some lovely places in lovely towns, people were so kind. We didn’t totally suck at most of the shows, the warehouse show in Nantes was incredible, the bar owner in Rouen was hilarious, the listening to Knut at full volume on a late night drive to keep us awake, the Paris gig…ah the gig in Paris. That show was and still is my absolute favourite of all time that I’ve played at. I messed up tons (and it’s all recorded for posterity) but the crowd were so pumped, we felt really good, the sound was great…it was that rare gig you play when everything falls into place.
Coming back from that gig, I felt totally bummed out. I didn’t want it to end. And when I got back to my flat, I turned on my work phone and had a voicemail from my boss telling me I’d been made redundant whilst I was away. I think I was more bothered by the tour being over, to be honest.
“That Laughing Cow sticker I saw on a toilet lid in Nantes with ‘Je mange ton caca’ in a speech bubble was pretty amazing”
– Tristan Holden
Tristan Holden One memory from the tour which always makes me laugh is when we disembarked the ferry in St. Malo (still a bit drunk from the overnight journey) we had all of the gear with us and were standing around on the dockside with some 200 people that had also made the journey. A French lady from the ferry company came and asked us if we were in a group, and naturally we said ‘uhhh, yes’. We were then led, just the four of us, to a huge empty bus (one of the Euro ones that bend in the middle) and driven to the terminal in front of 200 other ferry travellers gawping at us from the dockside. We joked at the time that it must have looked like we were U2 or something, and we couldn’t stop laughing at how weird the whole thing was.
Henry Tremain Things got pretty silly on the way over to France on the ferry, we were pretty riled up on the excitement of going on tour and had 8 hours to stir on a boat with a bar and our own hotel room. Bob and The Count took some fucking amazing promo shots of our new Pennines shirts, posing in a small toilet wearing only their pants. Unfortunately The Count grabbed the camera and deleted the evidence. For some reason we all started talking in fake geordie accents, which we held for the rest of the tour – I think we thought it would be funny as the French dude’s wouldn’t know we were speaking any differently. We taught Ghislain of Fago to say ‘Turbo D’ in a geordie accent (as he was driving a Renault 21 Turbo D) – his pronunciation was impeccable.
“Sometimes when Tristan laughs too hard he cries, it’s an amazing thing to see, and he cried pretty hard that night.”
– Mike Wightman
One of the main highlights was getting to see Fago every night – absolutely astounding! I think their best show was Leeds – I remember Jérôme getting so into one song that he fell off his drum stool (it was intense). Those guys are some of the nicest humans ever built!!
Mike Wightman Best dudes in the world. Such an incredible band and the most welcoming group of guys I’ve had the pleasure to spend time with. We first played with them the night Boris Johnson was elected mayor of London and they were just the sweetest guys. I have no idea who the promoter was that night, or why we ended up on the same bill, but I’m glad we did. We stayed in contact and the “Hey! We should tour together!” conversation that every band has all too frequently actually came to fruition as fago have far more drive than we ever did.
The tour made me realise what unrelenting morons we all are, and I sort of pity anyone who has to be around us for any length of time. I’ll give a couple of examples;
“For me I guess I took away that the best way to approach music is to just enjoy it, don’t take things seriously and do it with friends. If other people dig what you do then that’s a massive bonus.” – Tristan Holden
We were in Nantes, the venue was an architect’s unit next to a river and Talibam were also on the bill. There was one toilet in the whole place and I had already walked in on a girl peeing at a point early in the evening who informed me that the lock wasn’t all that great. You’d think I’d remember this, right? No. Later in the evening, when the place was busy I took myself off for a wee and locked the door behind me. All good, but went to leave and the lock just failed in my hands. I started to turn the handle which looked metal, but was in fact the crappiest plastic I’ve ever encountered and the whole thing started to bend with every ounce (or nM) of pressure. I had to call Tristan to come and kick the door down from the other side. Sometimes when Tristan laughs too hard he cries, it’s an amazing thing to see, and he cried pretty hard that night.
Tristan Holden That Laughing Cow sticker I saw on a toilet lid in Nantes with ‘Je mange ton caca’ in a speech bubble was pretty amazing too.
Mike Wightman Another night in Rouen, the promoter, Damien, had given us his flat to sleep in after the show. Giving up your flat to four potential dickheads is a remarkably nice thing to do – he’d left his computer on for us to use and everything. Nice man. His computer made a fair amount of noise so we turned it off and slept like kings. In the morning we turned that ruddy computer back on so we could internet our little faces off (or see how many myspace plays we’d had or something) but we were met with the blue screen of death. Damien is a wonderful artist and we were pretty certain we’d basically just destroyed his livelihood, or at least caused him a great deal of inconvenience. We informed him as soon as we met him for breakfast and he told us it was OK, but his eyes suggested we’d greatly disappointed him. We felt bad.
Collapsing New BuildingsFair Dos [tour release]3:11
Does Not WantFair Dos [tour release]2:03
PART FOUR (subtitles)
Tristan Holden Not sure if this is common knowledge or not but our 3 track EP wasn’t actually intended to be called Fair Do’s, but was intended to be the name of our own label (after Mike’s gigs he used to put on). People just started calling it that and we never bothered to correct them. We also usually named songs after in-jokes and stuff we found funny, like Billie Jeans (Billie Jean but not quite) and Style 97, which was an unbeatable card in a pack of Disney’s High School Musical Top Drumpfs we bought on the ferry on the way to France.
“I guess I’ve learnt how much of a beautiful meritocracy independent music has become post the interwebs. We really couldn’t have done less as a band, yet our music, through word of mouth, has found an audience. A modest audience, but one that has a genuine fondness and appreciation for the songs. Pretty awesome really!” – Henry Tremain
Henry Tremain A band practice recording of Style 97 was uploaded by The Count as Ignore The Glitches (due to the jumps in the recording), before we had a title for it. People have since assumed the title of the track was Ignore The Glitches, but the track was eventually named, in France, in honour of the unbeatable style of Troy from Highschool Musical 3.
We didn’t tend to take ourselves too seriously. I remember we had finished tracking our first two track demo the week before we had a show in Dalston with This Town Needs Guns, Colour and Tubelord. I decided I’d try and record some vocals and have it mixed before that night, so we could hand them out. The boys turned up at my gaf (which was only up the road from the venue), I played them the mix, everyone was happy so I burnt 20 or so. As the CDs were coming out, I handed them to Mike and asked if he could write the tracks and band name on them. He asked me what the first track was called, and I said “I don’t know?” so he just wrote ‘whisky tango foxtrot?’ I remember laughing pretty hard, and then he finished it ‘lima oscar lima!’. We plopped them in some sleeves I had printed at work and off we went to the show.
Before we left I emailed the tracks to a friend we had met at a show in Oxford, who had been asking for demos as she was scouting for Huw Stephens. After getting home that night there was a message from her saying to turn on the radio. I pulled my old tuner out of a cardboard box, plugged it all into my hi-fi, turned it on and there was Whisky Tango Foxtrot being played on BBC Radio 1!! Seemed pretty crazy that I had been finishing the vocals and the mixing of that track earlier that day and now it was being played on the radio, and Huw Stephens was trying to read out the ridiculous title Mike had just made up hours before.
Jerry and his brother Lol setting up Jerry’s old Fostex A8 open-deck reel-to-reel 8-track tape machine – just before the recording of the drums for Whisky Tango Foxtrot and Open Closed Open.
Mike Wightman This band always felt really casual and almost everything we did was one big in-joke, sometimes the absolute garbage that kept us awake on the drive home would spill over into something visible. I remember reading a review (could have just been a comment, thinking about it) online once, and the guy was linking the use of the phonetic alphabet in ‘Whiskey Tango….’ to the “militaristic drums” in the song, but it was just us being silly again. It was cool that he’d thought about it that much though.
I’m pretty certain that the song “Bows and Arrows Against the Lightening” was named after an attempt to write a Rush song.
“I once saw Kiss in ’96 at Donington Monsters of Rock festival and they were the first band I’d ever walked out on – they were absolutely pitiful. I was later told that in order to get the original line up back together for the money-spinner, Gene & Paul had to essentially employ two heroin addicts. This is kind of how I view a Pennines reformation, without the heroin.” – Mike Wightman
What would the album have sounded like?
Tristan Holden I guess things just naturally came to a close, towards the end practices usually consisted of us playing for 20 minutes and then spending the auother 2 hours drinking tea and watching DVDs. We had always intended to do an album at some point and had started to write new stuff, but it just wasn’t to be. It became a bit of a drag trying to organise everyone getting together and we just weren’t all that interested in playing anymore. I guess I would have been stoked if it’d sounded as nice as a Stapleton or Promise Ring record that was done by J. Robbins. Musically you can get an idea of what it would have sounded like from our last few recordings (What is Your Best Riff? and > a Feeling).
Henry Tremain We never really broke up, we just haven’t played music together in a while, and we’re not likely to anytime soon. I quit my job, started working part time at a cinema and couldn’t afford the commute to practise, and there wasn’t any demand for me to come up to practise. No one seemed too bothered about it. Mike and Jerry still had ‘Fun! Yeah!’ going on (later renamed ‘Men’ and now Big Success). I think by that time Jerry really wasn’t into playing drums. Drums are not Jerry’s first instrument, and we were only really doing the band for fun, but when it comes to playing live there’s a pressure for drummers to hold everything together and be ‘tight’ – which isn’t too fun when you’re only a casual player.
Anyways, we were working towards a full release, and had written some newer song with that intent. Good old Keith of Count Your Lucky Stars was going to release it up yank, and he still talks about putting out a Pennines release whenever I see him. Now Tak from Stiff Slack is wanting to do a Pennines release in Japan – why, I have no idea? Me and The Count have talked about it and don’t really want to put out a release that is just those 6 demos without adding anything to them. I think the chance of us persuading Mike and Jerry into a practise isn’t too likely – and enough practises to be ready to record those other songs, very unlikely. Especially as Mike and Michelle are proud owners of 2 awesome little humans and Michelle is halfway through constructing their 3rd human (congrates dudes!). Plus any time and effort put towards a Pennines recording is time and effort that could be put towards Ballgame. Once we’ve got the Ballgame record done, then maybe we could look at doing something with those old Pennines songs and putting a release together?
Mike Wightman I would echo Hank’s sentiment that we never really broke up, we just haven’t all been in a room together for a while. We considered getting back in a room again recently but I was working a million hours a week and barely spending any time with my family and so opted out. This led directly to Ballgame starting up again, and I think anyone who liked what we did will get an awful lot more out of that than us getting back together.
I once saw Kiss in ’96 at Donington Monsters of Rock festival and they were the first band I’d ever walked out on – they were absolutely pitiful. I was later told that in order to get the original line up back together for the money-spinner, Gene & Paul had to essentially employ two heroin addicts. This is kind of how I view a Pennines reformation, without the heroin.
What did you take from the whole experience?
Bob D’Mello I’m lucky enough to play with Tristan and Henry in a band called Ballgame, now. We’ve just restarted it after a couple of years being lazy / unable to do it / busy doing ‘life things’…hopefully we’ll keep it going, do a release, play some shows. If we could do anything near as good as Pennines I’ll be immensely pleased. I’m just pleased I had a chance to get to know the guys and have a chance to be part of their story.
Tristan Holden For me I guess I took away that the best way to approach music is to just enjoy it, don’t take things seriously and do it with friends. If other people dig what you do then that’s a massive bonus.
Henry Tremain I guess I’ve learnt how much of a beautiful meritocracy independent music has become post the interwebs. We really couldn’t have done less as a band, yet our music, through word of mouth, has found an audience. A modest audience, but one that has a genuine fondness and appreciation for the songs. Pretty awesome really!
Mike Wightman For me, if you surround yourself with talented people and keep quiet, you can hoss along for the ride without anyone really noticing that you’re the weak link. Like Pete Wentz.
Oh, also your band can spend about five minutes between each song tuning guitars and people will still stand there and wait for you to play the next one. Then clap. What was wrong with you guys?