With the follow up to their well received 2013 E.P Creepy, forthcoming Reasons Not To Sleep sees Southampton’s Miss Vincent switching it from creepy to gloomy. Playing their self-styled ‘moody punk rock’, paying homage to the likes of Alkaline Trio and AFI, RNTS see them take their craft to the next level. “The songs we wrote for this record have a much darker, aggressive, and unhinged feel to them,” says Alex Marshall, lead vocalist and guitarist. Set for release on 11th May via Engineer Records, you can get a taste of what to expect via their track by track guide now…
“Reasons Not To Sleep is a dark record. It wasn’t a completely conscious decision to start with. The songs naturally took a gloomier direction, and we just went with it full tilt. All the newer material was much much faster, angrier, and more unhinged, and it felt more like “our” sound.
Production wise we really wanted to capture the frenetic energy of playing the songs live as well as the more ethereal, layered elements. Recording with Neil Kennedy at the Ranch in Southampton was a great fit, he really helped us layer the songs perfectly and created the depth and atmosphere we were looking for.
DNR: We toured a lot of these songs for almost a year before recording them, and the gang vocals in this one seemed to get people singing along almost immediately. Theme wise it’s just a panicked expression of hopelessness - it’s questioning whether everyone should just give up on you, but at the same time there’s a sense of hope that if you stick together you can rid yourself of that feeling.
Gradients of Grey: The roots of this song lie before Miss Vincent was even formed. It started as a little conversation with myself about perseverance, because at the time I didn’t have a band or anyone to form one with, just a burning desire to play. There’s a counterpoint between the relatively minimal verses and the big call and response chorus. We’re big Misfits fans too so any excuse for some good old “whoa”s really!
Disparate, Desperate: This wasn’t always a slow song. It was originally double the speed but didn’t sound quite right; Lawrie suggested slowing it down and the feel just clicked. It’s a lot of fun to play live because it’s sort of sinister and introverted in the verses, and the chorus lets out all that pent up aggression. And there's a rad guitar solo. The spooky riff at the start trails on perfectly from the weird segue from the song before. If you listen hard you can hear a little bit of eBow action underneath all the atmospherics that had Lawrie and Neil on their knees twiddling knobs on pedals for hours.
The lyrics in this are pretty broad. It’s that feeling of seeing people tread a known path in the hope of success and not wanting to follow, but having a horrible internal struggle that comes with it. When I wrote this I was questioning everything I was doing, wondering why this shitty feeling got worse as I got older. I was giving advice to someone very close to me, and I sort of stopped midway through a sentence because I realised that I could do with taking that same advice. In that sense there’s some positivity blended in. At the same time I was dealing with some health issues as well, that’s where the line about hospitals comes from.
Shogun Queen: Two and a half minutes of rage. It’s a pissed off song about how badly people can act towards each other, how they repeatedly take advantage of one another. We aimed to do as few vocal takes as possible to try and capture that raw, aggressive feel, and it worked out great.
How Much Further?: This was the first song from the EP that we played live. Even though no one had heard it it’s always gone down really well at shows and people seem to remember it, so for those reasons we chose it as the lead single. It was only once we got in the studio that we realised how fast we play it live, so it was probably the toughest track to record. The lyrics are essentially reflecting on the fact that life sometimes seems to wait until things are looking up to tear you down again. As though everything you aspire to is nothing more than a shadow that you’re chasing.
Reasons Not To Sleep is out via Engineer Records on the 11/05/15! Check out the lead single 'How Much Further' here:
Miss Vincent's Facebook | Twitter | Bandcamp