Transition, Baby! are not your typical Manchester band, if there is such a thing, looking out across the pond to the US rock scene for their sound and influence, it’s all good though and there is still a bit of the old Manchester swagger about these guys!!
The band have been around for 3 years now regularly playing the Manchester circuit with gigs at the The Roadhouse, Dry Bar and Moho as well as further afield. Early in their career they took part in a ‘battle of the bands style’ competition at the O2 in London making it through to the last 16 from over 12,000 other acts.
The first thing that struck me about the band was the American influenced sound, instantly referencing one of my favourite bands from the last few years – We Are Scientists with the energy from the rhythm section, catchy guitar work and great vocals. After a few more listens you can peel back the layers and realise there’s more too this band than Uncle Sam, you’ve got a bit of ska, disco, some heavier rock interludes along with the straight up indie rock sounds. All in all some great tunes well put together and delivered with a real energy that I’m sure will make for a cracking live experience.
Have a listen to a few of the tracks they’ve posted on SoundCloud whilst you read the short Q & A I had with the band about influences, music and football!
Tell us how the band came about and how would you describe your sound?
Three of us – James Cotterill, Dan Arrowsmith and Andy Forshaw started a band in college after studying music together before friend of the band Joe Dobie joined the line-up in 2009 and we began ‘Transition, Baby!’ We pride ourselves on our sound’s originality and versatility; combining the best of British indie from the last 30 to 40 years with a blend of US rock influences.
Speaking of the US I can definitely hear that in your sound, along with American bands what others bands make up your influences?
We believe music is more global than ever and we definitely have an appreciation for music coming out of the US. We are massive fans of The Strokes, Queens Of The Stone Age, Modest Mouse, Interpol, The Killers, We Are Scientists, The Black Keys. We’d bracket our style as being influenced by these bands but we also like to think we remain just as British in our sound. We really rate Arctic Monkeys, Bloc Party, The Libertines, The Smiths, The Sunshine Underground, Alt-J and bear these in mind when we write tunes.
When your writing tunes where else do you draw inspiration from?
We’re influenced by everyday life, personal experiences and observations. There are loads of real incidents that make it into our lyric writing, mostly ambiguous references to situations we’ve found ourselves in. We don’t really like giving away the meanings of our songs, we’d prefer people make their own ideas up about what we’re saying and apply it to their own experiences, that’s the good thing about music.
Music in general seems to be in a state of transition (sorry!?!) at the moment, with no real direction, sound or scene, how do you feel about this and what do predict for the future?
We don’t think anybody knows where music is heading, there’s so much going on in the industry today. We guess we’ve purposefully embraced a heavier sound than most contemporary indie/alternative bands in a bid to reintroduce a bit of bite in the scene. There’s that many different scenes it’s impossible to predict what is going to stay and be remembered in the next few decades. We’re optimistic we can put our spin on the music industry.
Manchester always seems to have a host of bands in the category of next big thing, do you enjoy the competition and who else should we be looking out for?
We love that Manchester is a famously renowned city for producing the biggest and best bands. The scene today is as strong as ever and there’s plenty of healthy competition between bands because the quality is so high. There are literally dozens of class venues across Manchester we’ve had the privilege to play so it’s hard not to enjoy a night out discovering new talent. We had great fun playing a couple of shows with //MIDNIGHT// earlier this year and tip them for big things. Another great band we’re looking to play with in 2013 is As Elephants Are, a top set of lads from Aylesbury worth checking out.
What’s been your favorite gig then?
Our favourite gig was at Moho Live in the Northern Quarter on their Indigo night, organized by Stuart Avery. We were showcasing a fair few new tunes, the venue was packed, and our set was really tight and went down a storm. The entire crowd was buzzing and it was just one of those atmospheres you revel in. The line-up was brilliant and the night out after was superb.
So what are the plans for 2013?
We’re going to be releasing our debut EP in February then getting straight back into recording with our follow-up EP at Blueprint Studios, being produced by David Woodhead. We’re currently booking a host of shows around Manchester in the spring, and then looking forward to our first 2-week tour across England this summer. You can keep track of our upcoming gigs on Twitter: @transitionbaby
And finally speaking to a band from Manchester I’m going to have to ask about football, where do the bands allegiancies lie?
We all support Manchester United; I don’t think we could tolerate any Blues in the band! We were recording our EP when City won the league last year and it put a massive downer on the day but we’re all confident we’ll be sitting top of the league next time we record with our 20th title!
Thanks for taking the time to talk and look forward to that EP and catching you live in the future!
Here’s a clip of Transition, Baby in action from The Online Festival Goes Live at Dry Bar, Manchester back in November last year.