After being recognised in their local Alternative Music in Falkirk Awards for two years running, The Nickajack Men are releasing their debut EP Wasting Away with the intention of finding a wider audience. We spoke to lead singer Lewis White about their story up to now.
We all finish work and are buzzing to get in and practice or play a show or whatever as long as its something to do with us making music.
First up, tell us bit about yourself - what led you all to forming The Nickajack Men?
We are The Nickajack Men, currently a five piece playing loud music that is somewhere inbetween indie-rock and alt-country-rock. We like to put on a show so if that sounds good to you, defo come check out a live show!
Myself and Jamie had played in a band before years ago when we were younger and we wanted to start something again. It was originally going to be more acoustic Americana stuff but once we got the full band together our sound just kind of grew. Were happy with where were at just now, were always looking to improve as musicians and song writers.
You’re based in Falkirk. What’s the music scene like there?
To be perfectly honest, there isn’t much of a scene, but there are definitely some real good bands! Fairweather & The Elements and Ghost Writer are a couple favorites of ours! We managed to get our last show in Behind The Wall, Falkirk sold out which was pretty cool.
How would you describe your musical style?
This should be an easy one, but it’s probably the hardest. I suppose, as I mentioned earlier, it’s somewhere lost inbetween indie-rock and alt-country-rock. There’s some all out rock ‘n’ roll in there as we are all big fans of the genre. I personally grew up listening to a lot of American country rock and alternative stuff, so doing a lot of the songwriting my influences definitely come through. Bands like The War On Drugs, Old 97’s, Nathaniel Rateliff, Deer Tick, Dawes, Delta Spirit and Alabama Shakes have always been inspirational to me. They all seem to play with such an attitude and pride in the music they make it really resonated with me. Our style/sound is definitely found somewhere in all those influences!
Tell us about your forthcoming EP Wasting Away. When did you write the songs and what are the overriding themes?
It’s a pretty frustrated EP, we are all sick and tired of our usual boring shitty jobs during the week. and this is literally all we want to do. We all finish work and are buzzing to get in and practice or play a show or whatever as long as its something to do with us making music.
The main single ‘Running’ is the most recent track written on the EP and is pretty much all about that. Being stuck here and most the decisions being out our hands. The writing stretches back to some of the first songs I had ever written. ‘Erb’ was the first, although it has changed drastically arrangement-wise, the lyrics have pretty much remained the same. I think by the title you can probably guess what it’s all about, haha.
Which of the songs on the EP was the hardest to write?
I honestly wouldn’t say any were ‘hard’ to write, so to speak, but I suppose ‘Running’ posed the most problems getting it to where it is right now. It’s more the arrangement of the track rather than the writing though. Lyrically I just wrote a song about how I was feeling at that point in my life, so I feel that side of things comes pretty natural!
Which of the songs are you most proud of?
Again ‘Running’ getting a mention here, haha, I think it’s definitely the one I’m most proud of. I think it flows real nice throughout, and it has a pretty different sound about it compared to what you normally hear coming from where we are.
Which of the songs are you looking forward to playing live?
I’m looking forward to playing them all live along with some new material at our Wasting Away release show in King Tuts on Saturday 24th June, but without doubt ‘When The Winter Comes’ receives the best reaction from the crowd. It’s really the one that kicks it all off, haha. People seem to go crazy for it so were buzzing to see Tuts go crazy for it now that it’s actually released!
If an artist or band was to cover one of your the Wasting Away songs, who would you want it to be and which song would you like to hear them cover?
Ohh, that’s a good question, I like this one. Ehhm, I’m probably going to go for The War On Drugs covering ‘Running’, but it would also be beautiful to see Twin Peaks covering ‘When The Winter Comes’!
You’ve played a sold out show at King Tuts as well as landing the awards of ‘Best Newcomers’ 2015, ’Best Single’ and ‘Best Alternative/Indie Band’ 2016 at the Alternative Music in Falkirk Awards. What do those accolades mean to you?
Yeah, it’s always amazing to sell a show out! We sold out two last year and have sold out one so far this year, so we are really happy. It’s an amazing feeling to see a packed venue all buzzing for the songs to be played! The awards are great as well we really appreciate all the people who take the time to listen to our music, and if they enjoy it and want to help spread the word then we are always extreamly grateful!
Where can we see you live in 2017?
Saturday, June 24th - King Tuts, Glasgow // Wasting Away official release show
Friday, June 30th - Falkirk Stadium, Falkirk // Craft Beer Discovery Festival
Saturday, August 26th - McGrory’s Hotel, Culdaff Ireland // Headline show
Sunday, October 22nd - Leith, Edinburgh // Krafty Brews EH6 Festival
Finally, if you could wish for one thing to happen to the band in 2017, what would it be?
Get to the USA to play some kind of show.
Watch the video for ‘Running’ on YouTube below. For news and tour dates go to The Nickajackmen Facebook page.