Interview With Sheffield’s Rising Stars “Shadow Smile”

Greetings from Metalheads Forever Magazine, I’m Keith Clement, How are you today?

Connor McGovern – Vocals: I’m doing great thank you Keith! Thank you for chatting with me. 

Your Single “Signed In Blood” from your upcoming album to be out on 13th January, Would you like to tell me about the song and making of the video?

CM: This song was actually the last song we wrote for the album because we felt we had some great songs but not one that we felt would open up a show perfectly. So we intentionally wrote this with opening up a show in mind. It pulls from all our influences from extreme metal to pop and hip hop so it feels very eclectic.

Making the video was a harrowing day! We filmed in an abandoned factory and had to load the gear over a mile through woodland in heavy rain which wasn’t fun! But the video came out great.

The album “Signed In Blood” to be out in April this year, Would you like to tell me about the songwriting and production behind the album?

CM: We worked with Daniel Jeffery at Treehouse Studios (BMTH, Bullet for my Valentine) which is mind-blowing. We’ve really tried to hone in on the technical aspects of songwriting, making sure the songs hold up instead of just being a collection of riffs with screaming on top. I feel like these songs could be played on piano and work just as well. 

Was there any particular concept behind the album?

CM: Yes! We wanted to write about the Seven Deadly Sins and, instead of how they apply in the Biblical sense, how they can be seen as modern day parables and warnings of where we might be going wrong as a society. 

Do you have release day plans for the album?

CM: There’s a lot in the works but it’s not quite set in stone just yet! We’ll keep you posted.

Are there more videos in plans before the release of the album?

CM: Another 2 before the album. Possibly more after. I find videos a really useful way to expand on the imagery and lyrical themes of the songs. We like to get theatrical. 

Would you like to introduce Shadow Smile to the readers and how it all started as a band?

CM: We actually began as a guitarist and singer writing a couple of songs with no real ambition for them but once we shared them online there was a clear appetite for what we were doing. So we recruited the rest of the band and engaged with our audience as much as possible, now we have this amazing, dedicated community, 8 singles and an upcoming crowd-funded album. It’s been a whirlwind. Our lyrics and imagery are pretty dark and theatrical and I’d say we’re for fans of Ghost, Avenged Sevenfold and While She Sleeps.

How are touring plans coming up in 2023?

CM: We’re touring the UK in full for the first time this year. We formed as the lockdowns happened so we released most of the music we’ve put out in a time when we couldn’t tour. That could be why we’ve relied on video so much. But we’re extremely excited to bring our show to more people as we’ve only played Sheffield, Nottingham and Derby so far!

What would be some of the upcoming plans for the band?

CM: Releasing the album, touring as much as possible and seeing as many members of our community as possible before starting to write the next record.

Any plans to take the band overseas?

CM: There’s definitely a bunch of people in a fair few countries who want to see us. We just need to keep growing to make it viable but 100% we will be over seas before long. And we can’t wait to spread our unholy gospel like a plague.

What would be some of the highlight moments for the band?

CM: Our first show was opening for Skid Row which was a great moment and our last show in Sheffield was really cool as it was the first time we’d drawn a real crowd without having to pester friends and family. It was a bit of a reaffirming moment that we’re doing something right.

What would be the biggest dream?

CM: Just to be as big as possible and reach as many people as we can. We’d love to play the big festivals like Download and Hellfest. I suppose the biggest dream is to headline them.

Finally what would be the message for the fans?

CM: Thank you! We are eternally grateful for everyone who gives us their time and attention. Be yourself and be awesome.

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