Narrow Plains, in their supersonic current persona, formed in London back in early 2012. Having met back when they were awkward indie kids, and having sauntered through decade of life, the boys re-banded and set about writing and self-recording their debut EP ‘Somewhere In Between’.
As all musicians ought, the NPs paid their dues by shamelessly whoring themselves about, gigging wherever noise was needed. The band have since performed at O2 Academy Islington, Cavern Club and one of London’s most iconic and notorious of stages at 100 Club.
The band, Charlie Ferriday, Roger Connick, Stuart Connick and Edd Simpson, have something, that thing that you can’t quite pin down and it has earned them rave reviews and, most tellingly for a new set of kids on the block, the respect of their peers and the hardened (and occasionally fickle) music industry insiders.
These days, having been hopping around the world, the boys should be resting on their laurels and polishing the swag of awards that they have gathered over the last couple of years, but since their latest single ‘I Should Have Known’ was released they have been riding the radio waves and running with their newly released, self-titled debut album under the Smart Indie label. Five songs from the album have already been handpicked to feature on BBC Introducing Track of the Day while the influential BBC Indie programme, Rapal, named the album its Album of the Week.
Without further ado.
When and why did you start playing?
We all started when we were pretty young, maybe 11 or 12. All four of us went to the same school in Caterham, Surrey. Our inspiration for playing music really began there, particularly because there used to be an annual rock show at the school. It was the biggest event of the year for the rock fans, and everyone wanted to form groups to be a part of it.
What instruments do you play?
Charlie; Guitar, lead vocals, harmonica, Roger; Bass, backing vocals, harmonica, Edd; Guitar, keys, harmonica, Stuart; Drums, backing vocals, harmonica.
What was the first tune(s) you learned?
As a band, we pitched straight into playing, rearranging and self-recording the 5 original songs that became our first EP. Individually, Charlie and Stu used to play covers of tunes like Blowing In The Wind, Field of Gold and Save Tonight. None of us can really remember our very first tunes but we all fancied ourselves as rockers when we were pre-teens, so they were probably Metallica, Jimmy Eat World or Bon Jovi covers.
Charlie and Stuart gifted our first track for our new hotspot, CLIC's LIVE NOISE. Raw and pretty damn sweet.
Vinyl, tape, CD, or digital?
We are all massive vinyl fans and really hope that, one day, our debut album will sell enough to make it worthwhile putting out on vinyl.
How do you handle a fuck up on stage?
We’ve had quite a few! Probably, our worst gig was a May Ball in Cambridge where Charlie lost his voice entirely after just one song in so we asked the audience to sing along instead but they didn’t really know the lyrics to any of our songs. We eventually switched to playing some unrehearsed covers that sounded even worse! At another gig, Stuart had his bass drum pedal fall apart on stage so Charlie just talked to the crowd for ages while Stuart was trying to fix the pedal.
Who or what is your ultimate influence?
We all have different influences but we are all fans of folk/rock acts like Mumford & Sons, Ben Howard, Noah and the Whale, and Bon Iver, as well as modern American rock like Foo Fighters, Goo Goo Dolls and Jimmy Eat World. Charlie’s playing style was definitely inspired by going to watch Newton Faulkner.
Where and when do you wish you’d been around to play at?
One era that would definitely have been great to play music in would have been the sixties. Not sure about wearing flowers in our hair but we would definitely have loved to play at Woodstock and listened to great artists like Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix.
If I gave you an elephant where would you hide it?
Ashamed to say that a nameless member of our band suggested that you would just get the elephant to wear a pair of sunglasses – so nobody would recognise it.
What is your favourite colour of socks to wear?
We were going to say that we prefer to go without socks but then we got cold feet.
If you were a biscuit, which would you be?
We have actually done some research on this and discovered that Digestive biscuit lovers are fun-loving, fruit shortcake are charming and Hobnob fans think they are funny. So, we’ll just go for Digestives.
If you could have anyone locked in a room so that you could torment them for a day, whom would you choose and how would you torment them?
Our drummer Stuart torments us in a small room every time we have a band practice- he refuses to play quietly! So maybe we’d turn the tables and lock him in a room with the other three of us all with our own drum kits…
Narrow Plains have been nominated as Best Country/Folk act in the upcoming 2016 Unsigned Music Awards (UMAs). Out of almost 3,000 applications for the Unsigned Music Awards 2016, the band has made it through to the final 5 nominees in the Best Country / Folk category. The televised Awards show, presented by MTV’s Laura Whitmore and Radio 1’s Chris Stark, show is to be held at the Troxy Theatre, London on Thursday, 27th October, where the winner will be announced.
Saturday October 29th, Proud Camden