In a new segment we are running at All Music Magazine UK/Europe we will be spotlighting some of the bands and artists that we think are going to get people talking in the next 12 months; bands and artists we think you should check out to stay ahead of the curve.
And I would like to introduce you to a band I find incredibly exciting, and I think they are destined for very big things – THE CLOCKWORKS. As soon as this lockdown is over and gigs are back on, they are one of the first bands I will be looking to check out live.
So, with all that said, we at All Music Magazine decided it was time to have a little chat with them, to see where they came from, what they have been up to and what their plans for the future are.
Firstly, who are The Clockworks?
They are James McGregor, Seán Connelly, Damian Greaney and Tom Freeman they are from Galway, Ireland. They describe themselves as “a unique blend of intense Post Punk music with snarling kitchen-sink observations”
In November 2020 they were signed to Alan McGee’s new record label ‘Creation23’ immediately after their move to London, the quartet have impressed audiences in London and beyond with an impressive array of gigs and live performances including shows at Eurosonic, Electric Picnic, Sefton Park in Liverpool where they opened for Kings of Leon, as well as playing live on Soccer AM on Sky 1.
Along with this, the band have made way onto radio, so far being endorsed by Steve Lamacq on BBC 6, John Kennedy on Radio X, Rodney Bingenheimer on SiriusXM in the states, while at home being played regularly by Dan Hegarty on RTE2, and Ed Smith on Today FM.
“The best rehearsal I have seen since the 90s with Oasis is The Clockworks. What a band…” – Alan McGee
Due to lockdown face to face interviews are a not permitted so email was the medium of choice.
- What is the story behind your name?
We played one of our first gigs supporting The Magic Numbers, under some terrible name that was trying to be too smart for its own good, and we were having a few drinks afterwards and in a very friendly way they pointed out that our name was rubbish. So, we changed it to The Clockworks the next day.
- What first got you into music? or Who inspired you to make music?
For me (James) it was my parents who got me into music. There was always music on in the house. There could be anything from Chic, George Clinton to Radiohead, The Clash, David Bowie, The Cure. And then my parents introduced me to Arctic Monkeys just after their first album was released and that’s when I knew I wanted to start making music.
- How did you all meet?
Me, Sean and Damian went to school together in Loughrea. I was a year ahead of Sean and Damian and we met and bonded over music. We wrote and jammed together always and then formed a band. We had a couple of other bass players who decided music wasn’t for them, and when we moved into Galway City, we met Tom. We all lived together in Galway and started gigging as much as possible.
- How would you describe the music that you typically create?
It’s definitely got an element of punk or post-punk. I think our releases so far have typically been fast, short, sharp, and with lots of machine gun vocals.
- What is your creative process like?
I would generally spend a lot of time in pubs and cafes writing lyrics. I usually write every day. It’s obviously harder now that everything is closed. Musically, sometimes I’ll come up with a sort of general idea that works with the lyrical rhythm and the theme and we’ll take it from there. Other times it starts with us all playing something in the rehearsal room. Or else someone will have a part they like, and we’ll start writing around that. It differs from song to song, but I think that keeps it fresh for us.
- If you could go open a show for any artist who would it be?
There is a long list of artists we’d love to open for. We bonded together over bands like The Strokes and Arctic Monkeys so they would be great to play with.
- What is one message you would give to your fans?
Probably some sort of cryptic crossword clue that leads to our Spotify.
- What is the most useless talent you have?
Damian can do that thing where you hold one foot and then jump through it like a skipping rope. It’s surprisingly impressive. I’m not sure if it’s a talent, but there’s definitely no use for it.
- Do you sing in the shower? What songs?
Absolutely. Personally, I’m partial to a bit of Frank Sinatra.
- What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?
I think it was always going to be music. If we hadn’t found music yet we’d be looking for it.
- Where have you performed? What is your favourite and least favourite venues? Do you have any upcoming shows?
We’ve performed quite a lot in Ireland and London. We’ve also toured a bit of the UK. We were planning quite a lot of touring last year, which was obviously scuppered. The outdoor gigs we’ve played have been some of the best, such as Electric Picnic and Body and Soul in Ireland, and Sefton park with Kings of Leon in Liverpool.
- What is your favourite song to perform?
We used to always start our gigs with The Future Is Not What It Was. It was the most terrifying and exciting part of the set and there was always a sublime feeling about it.
- Which famous musicians do you admire?
Billie Eilish and Finneas are incredible, Radiohead, James Blake. Musicians and artists that can keep moving forward are always admirable.
- What is the most trouble you’ve ever gotten into?
When we were just starting out as a band, we pooled our money to make some posters for a gig in Galway. We spent the day putting the posters up around the city, naively not realising that you needed permission. With our name all over the posters it wasn’t hard to find us, and the council gave us a bad fine for it.
- What is the best advice you’ve been given?
A lot of people say it, and it seems obvious, but one of the best things we’ve been told is to write what you love, and not what you think everyone would love. It’s hard to stop second guessing, even when you think you’re not. But the game is lost as soon as you start trying to predict other people’s reactions.
- What’s next for you?
We’ve got more singles coming out in the next while, as well as some visual projects we’ve been working on. We’ve been busy putting stuff together.
FOLLOW THE CLOCKWORKS
My life is a soundtrack, i track my life through music, photography is my passion, my escape, my expression. Without both i have pieces missing, thankfully i’m blessed and get to combine both.
Born in Manchester, lived in Australia for 22 years where i was heavily involved in the Australian Music Industry, firstly in bands (Singer) and then managing bands (all original), I moved back to the UK, Wales specifically 10 years ago and married my childhood sweetheart and life is good.