Black Velveteens
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Black Velveteens

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A BAND seeking its big break has managed to get itself featured in influential music magazine NME, a champion of Brit rock as far back as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

The Black Velveteens were interviewed under the banner 'New and Unsigned' for the rock aficionados' mag, which sells around 40,000 copies nationally every week.

The band, which includes two Bankies, a Knightswood bassist and a front-man from Drumchapel, were chosen for the light-hearted feature from among hundreds of hopefuls who pitch for a plug in the publication, which has been influencing the careers of musicians for more than half a century.

Now vocalist Martin Knox, 22, is hoping the exposure in the New Musical Express can propel the four-piece into the limelight like it has for so many bands before them.

Martin told the Post: "We had been trying to get in to the NME but advertising costs are massive so we sort of left it at that.

"Then I noticed a number to call about featuring in a column, so I thought I'd give that a shot."

Despite the high volume of wannabe rock stars writing in, The Black Velveteens were selected to appear with an amusing Q and A along with a picture of the band - Martin, drummer Danny Hyslop, 22, and guitarist James Bruce, 22, both from Clydebank, and bassist Allan Hollinsworth, 18, from Knightswood.

For news on the band visit www.myspace.com/blackvelveteens. - Jamie Borthwick, Clydebank Post


The Scottish quartet – Martin Knox, vocals and lyrics, James Bowie, guitars, Allan Hollinsworth, bass and Danny Hyslop, drums – play Bumper next week, and they’re already raring to go.

I caught up with Martin to find out more about their musical influences.

“When we are concentrating on a single idea we have, finishing it into a song, it's a group effort as well as doing it separately,” he explains.

“It starts with just a jam in the studio or some chords that James or Allan have come up with, and usually I have some lyrics that I'll apply to the music, via whatever melodies I have spouting from me that week.

“That's how it starts, and we establish which is a chorus and which is a verse. After that, it's up to me to build upon the lyrics I have, and I'll use whatever I have in my music collection for inspiration.

“For example, one of our latest recordings, Home Remedies, started with a bassline treated by some funky drums, and I was getting a Motley Crüe vibe for some reason. So I went away and finished my lyrics with Motley Crüe constantly in my CD player, mixed with some Red Hot Chili Peppers' (pictured) Blood Sugar Sex Magik. Every song just set the mood for me, and I have a vast collection of music, all artists that I love, that inspire me.

“Most recently, drummer Danny totally turned me on to Incubus, so I've been trying to get my hands on their albums, and I've been listening to Jay-Z’s new album.

“My all-time favourite bands and artists who influence me are Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz, Motley Crüe, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Lupe Fiasco, Gnarls Barkley and too many more to mention.”

Black Velveteens play Bumper on October 24. For details, see www.myspace.com/blackvelveteens - Jade Wright, Liverpool Echo


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Black Velveteens, named after the track by Lenny Kravitz, have fused elements of their influences into their songs, genres including heavy rock, blues, grunge, hip hop and funk to name a few.

Having recently released their first EP on iTunes and Amazon, 2008’s The Prologue EP, Black Velveteens are always writing new material and have many songs yet to be released. Still unsigned, they have had many memorable moments while trying to change this fact; In 2006, the boys were at Hampden Stadium to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and a copy of their demo found it’s way onto the stage while support act Reverend and the Makers were on. “The Reverend” Jon McClure caught sight of the UFO and read out the details to a near packed Hampden before pocketing the CD. Also, Lenny Kravitz is all too aware that one of his greatest hits has been adopted as their title; In June 2009, Martin got the chance to meet him in Glasgow, and handed him over a few songs. Slash has a CD too!