Frome Rock City! Interview with Shauny Milton of Landscapes

 

Hailing from the small town of Frome, Somerset, Landscapes are a 5 piece Melodic Hardcore outfit, featuring vocalist Shauny Milton, guitarists Kai Sheldon and Martin Hutton, bassist Nick Wilcox and drummer Jordi Urch.

SFTS caught up with Shauny after their recent show at The Riverside in Sheffield on the 13th April, after they produced a blistering set of emotive, passionate hardcore.

Due to a double booking at the venue, Landscapes’ show was mixed with a vegan benefit night for saving whales. Despite not seeming the most logical combination, Shauny admitted the gig was still a success.

‘’The night was merged with a Vegan Crunk night which was a bit of a worry, but being vegan myself I didn’t see a major issue and all in all I enjoyed seeing the different scenes able to get along with each other and enjoy each other’s music. More shows should be like that!’’

Forming in the summer of 2009 from the ashes of a previous project, Landscapes’ rise through the ranks of the UK hardcore scene has been steady ever since.

‘’I was touring the first European tours with More Than Life at the time, when I returned home, a friends band in the local area called Counting Days mentioned their singer was looking at leaving to pursue another hobby and offered me if I wanted to give it a go. A few months later after writing a couple of new songs in the back of a pub in Frome, Somerset and deciding to change the name we played a show in Brighton supporting Miles Away and never looked back.

With a sound that’s packed with emotion and honesty, whilst remaining as hard hitting as possible, it’s not surprising that the lads from Somerset have gained a devoted fan base throughout the UK and Europe. However, the game changer for Landscapes came in 2010 when they signed to Sheffield based label Broken Night Records. Shauny admits to this being a real turning point for the band.

‘’Andy taking us on at Broken Night Records totally changed a lot of things for us. We wouldn’t be anywhere if it wasn’t for him and Shelley. They worked really hard to help get us distributed to all the right places and hooked us up with the tour last summer with The Carrier & All Teeth. We would have never have done that without them.’’

Although still relatively in their early days as a band, Landscapes is already Shauny’s full time passion.

‘’As it stands, none of the band work. For me, I work full time on the band, working day and night on merch ideas and designs, all the album artwork, tour posters, general flyers, booking shows, postage and packaging of merch…. if I’m not doing that I’m writing. Martin spends most of his time with Kai writing.’’

Shauny mid-show at the Riverside Sheffield

Having never been shy of hitting the road, Landscapes have already covered the UK, Germany, Spain and Italy with the likes of The Carrier, All Teeth, Empty Handed and Have Regrets. Eager to know if all that time on the road had led to any ‘interesting occurrences’, Shauny’s cagey response tells you all you need to know.

‘’What goes on tour stays on tour you know this. Rules are rules; I have to honour that code. That being said, I will advise not to feed Martin too much alcohol. Not unless you want to see him play his pipe. Like the Pied Piper who attracts small children, this particular pipe Martin owns calls in crack addicts, tramps and hookers. Be warned!’’

For the moment though, the focus for the band is their forthcoming debut album and the follow up to 2010’s Reminiscence.  There’s a real air of excitement in Shauny’s voice as he enthusiastically gives us an insight into the next step for Landscapes.

‘’It’s pretty different! The EP Reminiscence had a great deal of stuff said about love and loneliness. The album has stepped more into the open zone of life rather than being caught up on certain specific things. It contains a story throughout that drops in and out of being drunk on dreams and reality, fighting personal demons and letting go of things you counted more as a materialistic value. I’m really happy with it. I hope the people who listen to it do too, but if they don’t then that’s cool, we each wrote our parts in the album for ourselves and aren’t phased if people don’t like our music.’’

With a full length album ready to drop, as well as an upcoming European tour this summer, and dates still to be confirmed for a now thriving scene in Asia, the future is looking bright for the Frome five piece, but how far does Shauny see Landscapes going?

‘’To hell and back if I have to, bottom line is we’re a hardcore band so things can either be hype for you, or you spend the years working hard and not really seeing it go very far. We never have and never will be a hype band. I wouldn’t be happy if I knew I didn’t work my ass off to get where I wanted to be. If we could, I’d love to tour the states. I know full well we’d be on our ass out there but It’s more a case of doing it for the fun of it and meeting some more new people.’’

All photography by Jon Andrews

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