‘By law, all Manchester bands are class in my opinion. I don’t know what it is?’ Ste Woods, bass player in (surprisingly enough) Manchester band, Daystar tells me, he continues ‘maybe the pants weather means we spend longer in our bedrooms writing about stuff, like pants weather. But as Manc bands go, I can’t think of a bad one. I think Manchester definitely has its own “sound”, as does Liverpool. I love the sixties Manc bands, The Hollies, Herman’s Hermits, and of course the “Madchester” scene of the late 80’s, early 90’s just needs no further need for highlighting how magnificent that was.
“I’m inspired by the thought that one of our songs could be listened to by someone who is going through some stuff in their life and find comfort, connection, hope & even joy through the lyrics and music.”
Modern day, I love Puressence, I’m starting to get the Courteeners now, wasn’t sure at first, but Liam Fray is undeniably a top songwriter. Also, keep an eye out for some local unsigned bands like No Tokyo, and The Peyote Cult, both of whom have some epic tunes, along the lines of Exit Calm. I also like the more obvious stuff like Oasis, but one of the best bands from Manchester, for me, is “Doves”. Absolute class’. Frontman Simon Monaghan simply adds ‘I like Elbow, Delphic, Courteeners & Peyote Cult at the moment but my favorite all time Manc bands are The Smiths, The Buzzcocks, The Charlatans & Joy Division’.
So begins the conversation with Daystar. The five-piece band, were brought to my attention through the social media site, Twitter. I admit to being a bit of a Twitter whore it has to be said but it makes me smile when I find something worth listening/talking/writing about. It only seems natural that I drag Ste and Si for a chat and found out a bit more about this up and coming band.
According to Si, Daystar were formed around 14 months ago. Previous to that he was kicking ideas around with two producer friends, Phil Cuthbert and Dave Cooper. ‘At the time it was a hobby and I didn’t have the confidence to think it would get anywhere cos we were just messing about but it got to the point where I wanted to start playing live and obviously we needed a live band to do that. I was mates with Ste through work and poached him from another band then he enlisted Ryan his cousin who was a very talented guitarist who had a lot of enthusiasm for what we were doing.
He in turn had a mate Tom who was a top young drummer/musician and he wanted to get involved. We had 3 other guitarists who didn’t work out and we ended up meeting Jack our rhythm guitarist through tom. After this the songs really started to take shape and that takes us where we are now’.
Now, has just seen the launch of their first single Slip and Dive. The single, I’m told by Si, is ‘a bit of a paranoid song really probably born of hanging around the Manchester club scene and the drugs involved and the fake emotions/people in it.
It sounds a little like a mod ‘call to arms’ in our eyes’. With respect to song writing influences, Si continues ‘I know it’s a cliché, but I am inspired by the thought that one of our songs could be listened to by someone who is going through some stuff in their life and they could find comfort, connection, hope & even joy through the lyrics and music we provide.
Also what inspires me is cos we never had nothing growing up, the thought of amounting to nothing and not leaving a big mark on the world scares me silly. Plenty of sob stories and success stories like this I know but this is my sob/success story!’ Ste, on the other hand declares his love of ‘grooving bass-line. Something that is the sturdy drive underneath all the clever sounds that ride over the top. Whether that is vocals or mad guitar/keyboard sounds. That’s what I listen for in tunes, and I aim to replicate in what we offer’.
Offer away they intend too, with an album recently recorded and available through all the usual channels, the next step is surely the promotion of Daystar. Ste informs me that they ‘have a top management and production team, Dave Cooper and Phil Cuthbert.
There’s Liam Walsh as well from AskMePR and they all graft unbelievably hard on our behalf to spread the word – we truly are lucky to have them. It’s more than fair to say without them we’d be nowhere. Si, our singer, as well, won’t blow his own trumpet I know, so I will, and I’ll say that he probably spends more hours on Facebook and Twitter than the first two users of them! He is relentless, and absolutely awesome and getting us what we want and when we want it. He is quality’.
Si’s reply to this is simply ‘I’m welling up I am!’ but he then goes on to explain ‘yeah the twitter / Facebook following is getting there now we have sacked myspace off cos its crap. Like Ste said you could spend your life on there. (Bout 30% in my case) but Ste does need to realize that something that may seem like a pain in the bum can be for the greater good in all honesty. We have set up a blog now as well which me n Ste both update regularly which is on daystarband.wordpress.com so come check it out and subscribe if you like what we are saying!’
I have to say it is an informative blog it’s not just about the music but the band itself. It’s not all we’re great but it provides an insight into the life and times of a new band.
Gigging is, of course, what it’s all about. I asked the boys about their best/worst gigs. Ste kicks us off on this ‘aall good gigs should offer something you’re proud of and have perfected, and something you should learn from. As far as the band goes, we’ve been out gigging our stuff for about 12 months, and I’d say our songs have evolved slightly, as a result of the live performances of them but also we’ve learnt just how good they are at the same time’. He continues ‘the only nightmare gig was up in Oldham, where a combination of bad weather, it being festival time and the particular club having a down-turn in regular trade led to about 5 people showing up to see us.
Still even then, we learnt a lot about ourselves that night and changed our line-up as a result to give us what we have now, which is infinitely better. The best gig was the other week supporting Detroit Social Club at Moho in Manchester. The place was rammed, and we had a great turnout within that and they were great lads. We stormed it. Still get tingles now’. Si simply follows by stating ‘I agree with Ste and can’t follow it. He is good at this answering lark. If answers were porn I’d have to take a five-minute break right now!’
So moving swiftly on and finally, I ask the boys for one piece of advice they could give to the world.
‘My one piece of advice for the world would be try spinning the other way for a bit, see what happens, yer never know!’ recommends Ste, followed by Si ‘I would say that we need to find a way to have a world without money. Money is the only reason there are governments/greed/power. A systematical distribution of work and luxury…favouring or discriminating no-one. Everybody is equal and helps one another to live this life to the full. With this work/luxury divide we could focus all our efforts on evolving as a people. Improving technology to make life easier. Finding alternative energy sources and not putting our world in such danger. We are primitive. We are messing things up. Bit deep but you asked.’
Ask I did. I should have known better.