the faces of sarah
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the faces of sarah

Liverpool, England, United Kingdom | Established. Jan 01, 1999 | SELF

Liverpool, England, United Kingdom | SELF
Established on Jan, 1999
Band Rock Alternative

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"Stargazer Music magazing gig review"

The Digital Stage
The Faces Of Sarah
Positive Revenge

If you could bottle the electric atmosphere a band creates live and direct straight from the footlights, it would truly be worth its weight in gold, enabling you to take a sip every once in a while taking you back to that moment in time that had a huge effect on your life.
This is something that I inadvertently achieved on one such occasion on my tour of duty in London for the magazine, and to be honest has had a profound effect on me.
The trip took in a great many sights of London within the music industry, taking me through Camden Town on my way to meet a band I had previously written for. After a warm welcome from the venue owners and the band themselves, I was quickly introduced to the lead singer from The Faces of Sarah, Nick Schultz, who were headlining the evening.
After a quick chat, I decided to stay for a couple of songs to get a general feel as the buzz was building throughout the venue as more and more people piled in. Following two great sets from the support acts, the moment I had been waiting for arrived as The Faces of Sarah took to the stage. So there I sat at a bar to the rear of the venue, with a perfect view through to what was going on, typing up my notes, when a sense of electricity struck the air so strong you could have cut it with a knife. Thinking this was only a backing track I proceeded to continue what I was doing ready to wander over to the stage when the time was right. But soon it was evident that this was no backing track, but the band themselves, stirring the pot ready to cast their spell on us all which left me dropping what I was doing to join the stampede to the stage.
What unfolded from there on in words cannot express and only a trip to see them live can cure.

Formed in 1999 and based in the North West of England, The Faces Of Sarah perform at venues across the UK and in Europe, and since my attendance at their performance in London, found themselves embarking in a sell-out show in Oberhausen, Germany, where they have a good following and perform there on a fairly regular basis along with The Freakshow in Essen, Germany, The Camden Underworld and Koko being a personal favorites, also in Camden Town, London, formally known as The Camden Palace.
But, the touring takes its toll, as it does on a great many bands, and in their 20 year career founder member and lead vocalist Nick Schultz has gone through a few line-up changes from the origins of the band all those years ago.
But now with a brand new band of brothers behind him chomping at the bit, Nick and the band are set for the next 20 years.


Nick Schultz – Founder member / Lead Vocals, has been inspired by a great many artists over the years, but the ones that stand out for him would be Queen, Roger Waters, Bruce Springsteen, The Ravonettes, and Sisters of Mercy as they are the ones solely responsible for the sheer quality and style set in his performance and vocals today. Nick started singing at the tender age of 15 at school, but it wasn’t until performing at a school assembly that he truly got infected by the music industry bug and the passion for performing.
Nick has a very 80’s tone to his voice through a multitude of genres, but it’s that tone that draws you in instantly, as I soon discovered in London. His creative flow as a songwriter is superb, capturing a moment out of thin air before wrapping it with music for our endless pleasure. Seeing Nick perform is a pleasure in itself and holds a very dominant stance once in the spotlight, taking care of business right from the get go.


But, behind every great man there is a great woman.
Emma Newby, Vocals / Guitar, draws her inspiration from All About Eve, Stone Sour, Ghost, Anathema and Pink Floyd which has truly crafted her performance over the years and is not only reflected live and in the studio but through her song writing style also.
Emma started playing in 1994 and went on to play full time for a band in Spain for eleven years. But it was only since her return to song writing that she met Nick via a mutual friend he used to work with, and joined the band 2 years ago as their manager and vocalist, but soon took on guitar duties when the line-up relocated.
The vocal harmonies between Emma and partner Nick work beautifully, helping you drift further into a song and a more thoughtful frame of mind.
Now a song writing duo, Emma is truly the wind beneath his wings.
The Faces Of Sarah
Positive Revenge

If you could bottle the electric atmosphere a band creates live and direct straight from the footlights, it would truly be worth its weight in gold, enabling you to take a sip every once in a while taking you back to that moment in time that had a huge effect on your life.
This is something that I inadvertently achieved on one such occasion on my tour of duty in London for the magazine, and to be honest has had a profound effect on me.
The trip took in a great many sights of London within the music industry, taking me through Camden Town on my way to meet a band I had previously written for. After a warm welcome from the venue owners and the band themselves, I was quickly introduced to the lead singer from The Faces of Sarah, Nick Schultz, who were headlining the evening.
After a quick chat, I decided to stay for a couple of songs to get a general feel as the buzz was building throughout the venue as more and more people piled in. Following two great sets from the support acts, the moment I had been waiting for arrived as The Faces of Sarah took to the stage. So there I sat at a bar to the rear of the venue, with a perfect view through to what was going on, typing up my notes, when a sense of electricity struck the air so strong you could have cut it with a knife. Thinking this was only a backing track I proceeded to continue what I was doing ready to wander over to the stage when the time was right. But soon it was evident that this was no backing track, but the band themselves, stirring the pot ready to cast their spell on us all which left me dropping what I was doing to join the stampede to the stage.
What unfolded from there on in words cannot express and only a trip to see them live can cure.

Formed in 1999 and based in the North West of England, The Faces Of Sarah perform at venues across the UK and in Europe, and since my attendance at their performance in London, found themselves embarking in a sell-out show in Oberhausen, Germany, where they have a good following and perform there on a fairly regular basis along with The Freakshow in Essen, Germany, The Camden Underworld and Koko being a personal favorites, also in Camden Town, London, formally known as The Camden Palace.
But, the touring takes its toll, as it does on a great many bands, and in their 20 year career founder member and lead vocalist Nick Schultz has gone through a few line-up changes from the origins of the band all those years ago.
But now with a brand new band of brothers behind him chomping at the bit, Nick and the band are set for the next 20 years.


Nick Schultz – Founder member / Lead Vocals, has been inspired by a great many artists over the years, but the ones that stand out for him would be Queen, Roger Waters, Bruce Springsteen, The Ravonettes, and Sisters of Mercy as they are the ones solely responsible for the sheer quality and style set in his performance and vocals today. Nick started singing at the tender age of 15 at school, but it wasn’t until performing at a school assembly that he truly got infected by the music industry bug and the passion for performing.
Nick has a very 80’s tone to his voice through a multitude of genres, but it’s that tone that draws you in instantly, as I soon discovered in London. His creative flow as a songwriter is superb, capturing a moment out of thin air before wrapping it with music for our endless pleasure. Seeing Nick perform is a pleasure in itself and holds a very dominant stance once in the spotlight, taking care of business right from the get go.


But, behind every great man there is a great woman.
Emma Newby, Vocals / Guitar, draws her inspiration from All About Eve, Stone Sour, Ghost, Anathema and Pink Floyd which has truly crafted her performance over the years and is not only reflected live and in the studio but through her song writing style also.
Emma started playing in 1994 and went on to play full time for a band in Spain for eleven years. But it was only since her return to song writing that she met Nick via a mutual friend he used to work with, and joined the band 2 years ago as their manager and vocalist, but soon took on guitar duties when the line-up relocated.
The vocal harmonies between Emma and partner Nick work beautifully, helping you drift further into a song and a more thoughtful frame of mind.
Now a song writing duo, Emma is truly the wind beneath his wings.


Simon Lind – Lead Guitar, cut his teeth listening to Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Joe Satriani, Jeff Healey and AC/DC. Originally a drummer, Simon struck an interest with the guitar at fifteen, by seventeen Simon’s intrigue with guitar grew stronger and by eighteen made the transition from drums to guitar and went on to perfect his newly found craft, taking him far and wide touring America with Prog Rock Band Captain Beyond, which set him up nicely with the experience needed to further his career. Once in the spotlight with his ever faithful axe in his hand, Simon steps into his own offering a masterclass of guitarmanship within his genre, giving every track the cutting edge needed before setting the stage ablaze with intricate precision.

Dave Corcoran - Bass/ Backing Vocals draws his inspiration from The Beatles, The Who, David Bowie, and Jeff Lynne with the double bass fueling his interest at the tender age of twelve at school performances. By fourteen the bug had really set in whereupon Dave bought his first bass and by the age of sixteen had formed his first band with schoolmates.
Now, a fair few years later, Dave has perfected his craft offering a solid fat bass-line as he walks through his fret board with ease. Working well with his partner in crime Al in the rhythm section, Dave revs the engine hitting his audience in the solar plexus right from the footlights.

Al Johansson– Drums, takes his style from Muse, John Bonham, Dave Grohl and Neil Peart over the years and cut his teeth at the age of twelve on a Yamaha digital drum bank.
Now, once in the saddle, Al takes care of business with wing man Dave tempting any sea of heads that stand before him to punch the air for more whilst emitting enough power to blow even the most hardened rock fan through the back wall of any arena right from the riser.


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As a band, the influences are just as multifaceted, leaning on their individual strengths incorporating many different styles, only with a twist. But without losing sight of the FOS sound and back catalogue of tracks, they embrace what fans expect live with a compendium of tracks, and try to balance each other’s own unique abilities with what has been tried and tested over 20 years. This has worked really well in the past two decades found evident on the Positive Revenge EP which has been really well received. But the glue that holds them all together is a collective love of vocal harmony, something that is evident when you see the band live. The possibilities that come with guitar based rock and some powerful back line is immense, as its proudly stamped with the FOS trademark on everything they create.

In a recent interview, I asked Nick what the meaning was behind the name and how the choice came about, he replied;

“I came across the name whilst reading a book on demonic possession.One of the chapters was entitled ‘The 48 Faces of Sarah’ which was about a lady with multiple personality disorder (MPD) leaving her with 48 different personalities.I found this really interesting and a suitable name for a band with five very different personalities”.

I went on to ask Nick what they all like to do socially as a band in with this busy lifestyle of gigging, touring and recording, he went on to add;

“Most of our socializing comes from within band activities right now as we’ve had a busy few months.A heavy night out in Liverpool is on the cards very soon though”.


But with all that said, going from gig to gig, studio to studio and even touring country to country, monotony must set in, and although a romantic feeling for the avid fan seeing their favourite band out on the road visiting some wonderful countries of the world, I asked Nick what keeps them driven as a band, he replied;

“The love of creating and playing music,simple as that.Always trying to write that perfect song,that perfect album has been a constant source of motivation”.

I went on to pose the same question to Emma who added;

“Although I’ve only been in the band for a short time compared to its 20 year history,I’m driven by the potential the group has to move to the next level,it’s exciting and inspiring to have a line up now that all share that vision and I think that definitely shines through in our live performance”.

But just to show how versatile this band is to not only giving the audience what they want, but exactly how it should sound, enjoy this incredible cover below of a well known classic.


Twenty years is a long time for a band to be together, or at least the case for founder member Nick, and to still have the continued success they have had, equating in their longevity in the industry. Band members come and go due to life commitments and personal reasons, but here with The Faces of Sarah, the main nucleus remains the same, with the same passion and commitment that was born all those years ago.
With that said I asked Nick where he sees the band in the next 5 years, he went on to tell me;

“I see ourselves with that perfect song and album recorded”.

Agreeing with Nick wholeheartedly, Emma went on to add;

“It’s a cliché I know,but the journey is definitely more important than the destination.
We’d like to be able to look back and know we gave it our all and shared some great experiences through this music”


So with a busy schedule touring, gigging and recording and a great amount of time spent on the road, I asked the band what they have learned about themselves during their time in the music industry, both individually and collectively as a band, they went on to tell me;

Nick – “I’ve personally discovered that although the most important element of being in a band is the absolute love of the music that is created it’s also vital to have a very firm grip on the business side of things.I’m not a business minded person at all which has certainly cost me in the past,but luckily now that side of things have been taken care of and the difference is quite amazing"

Emma - “To have confidence and self-belief as well as the importance of being in a team.I learnt from being in a band full time to my work career and vice versa, and especially in terms of the business side there are a lot management skills that are transferable to the band and I have been able to bring some structure to the creativity(chaos)The most important thing I’ve learnt is that you can never give up on your dreams as you never know what’s round the corner.Two years ago when I picked up song writing again at home as an avenue to divert some stress,I never believed the songs would even be heard by anyone else,let alone that I’d have this opportunity to be part of an incredible band with such a history”.

Al - “The most important thing I’ve learnt as a drummer is playing what the music is telling you to do,if the song is about a storm then make it sound like a storm if the words say float away then make it float.It’s always about what works best for the song.Sometimes less is more. Play from the heart”.

Simon – “I’d personally be inclined to say that despite how tough it is to make an impact in the industry today,that as an artist or group it’s still impossible to surprise that urge to write songs from the heart and soul and the addiction of playing live to a responsive audience is very much what drives us to continue with our art”.


Earlier, we spoke of their twenty year journey within the industry and the sizable back catalogue of tracks that have evolved in that time. I went on to ask Nick, Emma and Simon what their take was on their song writing process, they went on to tell me;

Nick – “For me the process starts with a vocal melody hurriedly recorded into the phone.I’ll then write a song around it,demo it and send over to the band. Lyrically, it must come from the heart.Can’t sing with any kind of feel or passion if I don’t believe in what I’m singing about”.

Emma – “My song writing is very much in two halves.I used to do a lot of travelling with work and always make time to find some inspiration in each place to write some lyric ideas in a notebook.Then,when I have my guitar at home,I like to come up with chord sequences and melody ideas,from there I’ll look at my book of lyrics and find something to match”.

Simon – “For me sometimes the beginnings of a song originate from a vocal melody or a guitar riff idea recorded into the phone.Such ideas can then evolve through a building and layering process either privately or with the band”.


With adoring fans far and wide, I asked the band if there was anything they would like their existing fans and potential new fans to know, their rely was a positive one to say the least, and said;

Nick – “I’d really love for us to reach out far and wide to add to our audience.
We are an honest band writing and playing songs played very much from the heart with feeling and passion.A lot shows have a real ‘event’ feel about them and our interaction with the crowd is something very special and important to us”.

Emma – “It’s an exciting new era forFOS,we have big plans and are all really motivated to work together and seize every opportunity to reach larger audiences in more countries,but most importantly to keep writing music to make ourselves and,hopefully, others inspired”.

Al – “Absolutely certain there will be a major label involved somewhere down the line”.

Simon – “We’re continually pushing new boundaries and always reaching out.We would love for that feeling to resonate as far and wide as possible.There’s a heartfelt honesty within our music and nothing beats making that connection with people at gigs”.


I asked Emma if there was a country they felt most at home in, she replied;

“Germany is one of the bands favourite homes and we always look forward to seeing our friends and fans over there,some of whom even travel to the UK to catch our gigs.
We have such a great time after our shows there,including the venue's age old tradition of sharing a few shots together.We are honoured to now be part of the secret Gdanska Club of the 'Polish Flag' for putting on a great show.Thanks to our promoter Dirk and all the team at the Gdanska venue, not forgetting, of course, our amazing German fans who never let us down.

I followed this up by asking Emma if there was anything NEW in the pipeline, she went on to add;

"With the October show only a few months ago we wanted to try a few new tracks and honour a few requests,so we were thrilled that these were met with great reception including a haunting and powerful version of 'Past Life', a more mellow version of 'If I could, I would' and very experimental cover of Comfortably numb mixed in with classic Sisters of Mercy 'Some Kind of Stranger' and will now be a core part of our set".
To buy the ep, click the ep cover below.

And that brings me nicely to the ep in question here, Positive Revenge.

From start to finish, this ep ticks all the boxes within their genre laced with the perfect recipe for success. Throughout, the attention to detail is flawless capturing every nuance in music, lyrics and vocals. The blend of harmonies between Nick and Emma is set at a very high standard, almost creating their very own vocal instrumental wrapped in the most beautiful ambient textures of their own making. Each track with its deep and powerful meaning, give food for thought as you are led deeper and deeper onto the storyboard with them, as each song doesn't leave the studio unless its heart is truly beating.
I have had the pleasure of hearing The Faces Of Sarah LIVE when I met them in London, and the sound created LIVE is exactly the same as any of their albums, a credit to a great band and a great sound engineer.
So do yourselves a favour and put The Faces Of Sarah on your wish list for 2020.
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They always say that things happen for a reason, with journeys traveled, paths crossed and friendships made. On the 19th October 2019 I made the journey to London to meet and feature bands I had previously written for, whereupon I was luck enough to have a chance meeting with the lead singer of The Faces of Sarah who were hosting the evening, celebrating their 20 year journey and career in the industry. I felt the need to stay for at least 2 tracks, but walked out with my jaw on the floor at the end of the evening. Keep your eyes peeled as Stargazer Music Magazine aims to make this 20 year anniversary a new starting block to bring them the recognition they greatly deserve, and launch them even further into the public view. Well done guys, you make me so proud to be in the industry that we all greatly love, and its moments like these that make it all worthwhile – long may it continue.

Star Rating …… 10/10
Star Suggestion ……

If ever there were two tracks to tempt the listener into buying this ep, they would be…..
"Positive Revenge" and "The Storm" - Ian Davis


Discography

https://www.discogs.com/artist/396967-The-Faces-Of-Sarah

Photos

Bio

The Faces of Sarah are an alternative rock band now based near Liverpool UK. They formed in 1999 and released their debut album '24' on Spiky Black Cat Records, followed by the 'Misery Turns' EP, both to positive reviews and club play as far afield as Chile, Japan, USA, Australia & Germany.
This in turn led to touring with such bands as The Mission, NFD, Theatres des Vampires and Killing Miranda.
2005 saw the band return with a brand new line up and their self financed 'Impurity' E.P produced by Andy Reilly (Paradise Lost, Bruce Dickinson, Cradle of Filth, Moonspell, Quireboys, Pigface, Asia) which impressed Malicious Damage Records (The Orb,Killing Joke). They included a track from the Impurity E.P. on the compilation 'The Clock Machine Turns You On', and the band signed for a new album.
The album 'Lament' was released on Oct 30th 2006 on Malicious damage Records and was distributed worldwide through Cargo Records. It features Paul Miles (ex Nephilim) on lead guitar and production. Founder and singer Nick Schultz went on to release numerous solo projects in the years that followed, before bringing the band back together to release the seminal 'Memorium' album in February 2019...from the momentum gathered by this and touring Europe, the band relocated and the 'Positive Revenge' EP was released later the same year with a re-energised FoS looking forward to a huge year in 2020....though the live dates have all rescheduled, the events of this year haven't slowed down the pace and ambition of the band, releasing 3 singles and contributing to the charity compilation 'Unity' through the summer of 2020 and more new music available for general release on October 23rd 2020. The EP 'Whispers from the room' is the output of the strange times we have all lived through this year and represents hope in uncertain times. We wanted to maintain a sense of positivity throughout the lockdown period and deliver new music to our fans which is all self produced in house for the first time.e ever .

Band Members