What was the beginning point for your music career? How did it all start?
I was running a fanzine of local punk/post punk music here in Coventry between 1979-81 and I knew I would eventually move on to making my own music… I started ATTRITION in 1980, influenced by punk, post punk and later industrial electronics… I met the right people at local shows and after some failed experiments it eventually started to come together…at first as a post punk guitar/bass/drums/vocals line up but soon switching to more electronics and synthesizers…
Was there any bumps on the road? What kind of challenges did you have to deal with?
Oh yes I think we all find those bumps from time to time… line-up changes… record deals that never happened… shows or tours that didn’t happen…. It’s all a part of growing up and into learning your craft… and learning that if it doesn’t kill you it makes you stronger… and more able to deal with these things the next time round.
What was the most fulfilling and satisfying moment so far?
After 40 years there have been so many special moments… we’ve released a lot of albums and toured all over the world… 4 continents so far… recently I was thrilled to play a special show… a live performance of our 2012 horror film score – in the mountains of Transylvania in 2018…. My teenage horror obsessed younger self would have smiled J
How would you describe the music that you typically create?
Its been a mix of dark industrial sounds… songs and soundscapes… mixed with male and female vocals, classical instruments and some guitar… I work with a lot of guests so it is always eveolving…
What is your creative process like?
As a producer more than a musician, even now, I experiment with electronic sounds and create soundscapes. Some even stay like that as I have worked on film scores occasionally, the rest take on rhythms and melodies. I collaborate with a wide range of musicians from rock to classical to experimental as well as write the words. Everything progresses together as a whole and songs emerge from that primeval swamp of sound.
If you could change anything about the industry, what would it be?
I know there are sharks out there… and over inflated egos… and we have all been ripped off in deals at some point… but overall the music industry has been my life for so long and I have had so many magical times and seen so many places… and ultimately met some of the most wonderful people… many who have remained my friends for life… so I’m ok with the industry as it is… it too is always evolving… and there are a lot more dangers out there in the world than the music industry…
If you were asked to give a piece of advice to upcoming bands, what would that be?
Believe in yourself… by all means listen to good advice… and don’t worry about the critics or haters…. Put a lot of work into it and you will get back the same… and don’t follow leaders…
What has been the best performance of your career so far?
Again there are so many…. And if I can remember them I probably wasn’t there….
If you didn’t become a musician, what would you be doing now?
I started out as a visual artist, and have occasionally gone back to that… and of course some journalism when I ran my fanzine….i later became a teacher of music technology for a while… but ultimately I have always put my music first…I can’t imagine it any other way…
What is new with the band at the moment? What are you currently working on and would like to share with the world?
Well the new single, The Alibi, the second from the upcoming album, The Black Maria, is out this month… and as a lockdown thing, with no shows since our Tokyo gigs in December 2019, I spent time learning video production and have released my first promo video for this record…
Later in the year we will release the album itself…. And hopefully get back to touring….
As its also our 40th anniversary year we have some special reissues on vinyl – our 1982 horror film score “This Death house” is already out and will be followed by a vinyl collection from our mid period, “A Great Desire” 1986-2004, with songs that will be on vinyl for the first time…
Thank you for the interview!
Martin Bowes, Coventry, England. June 2021