Introduce us to your band!
Hi! I’m Ernie, I’m the songwriter, singer and guitarist for Bison Face. We’re a four-piece rock band from St Albans, England. The rest of the band is made up of Alex (Guitar), Jonny (Drums) and Arthur (Bass).
How did you guys start out?
It started as just me, needing to utilise a creative outlet; I’d written a load of songs and ideas and kept them under wraps, just demoing and demoing like a recluse, but after a few months I decided I wanted to put them into a new project.
I wanted to be in my own thing again, after a few stints of session work. I’d been in bands with Alex before, so he got the call when he moved back up from Brighton. We went through 5 or so tracks, which became the first live set and has subsequently become the debut single and the pending EP which will be out in summer!
Describe your band’s sound
It’s a mix of 90’s grunge/college rock and alternative rock with an abundance of other musical influences, I grew up listening to Radiohead, My Bloody Valentine, Elvis Costello and Cocteau Twins as well as the usual suspects Nirvana, Foo Fighters, etc. so there’s a lot of elements combining but the meat is guitars, and they’re pretty loud.
What influences your craft?
Most things! Films, art, music, poetry, literature, nature, personal experiences. I’ve been painting and drawing a lot more recently to unwind, so that’s influenced my thought process and mental state. During this lockdown I’ve been binging David Lynch and Blade Runner type content, so there’s a lot of new demos where that meta, dystopian feeling of confinement has seeped in.
Musically I’ve playing around with some weird guitar effects and plugins to get some out there sounds from a guitar that I haven’t really explored in the past.
What makes your project different?
I think the vastly different musical upbringings we have individually is going to create some completely unique soundscapes. We’ll always be a guitar band, and it’s always going to sound like the Bison Face I’ve got in my head, but there are so many avenues to explore. Saying that, I also think we’re not trying to sound like anything in particular, and that can be a rarity in today’s musical climate.
When introducing people to your music, what song should I show them first? What is your quintessential track?
At the moment we’ve only got the one released, so it’ll have to be Ladybird. It’s one of the first songs I finished writing for what would become this band, and it’s a good combination of a few different sounds. I designed the artwork, our friend Tom Sharp made us an amazing video to go with it and I recorded it down the road at Forgotten Media Studios with Ben, it was a real DIY team effort.
What has been the biggest struggle in your career so far?
Personally, it’s been getting a solid group of people involved with the band, that all share my passion and commitment. Now that’s in place the band feels like a whole new machine, it’s real positive. There’s only so much you can achieve by yourself, however much you throw yourself into something.
What has been the biggest highlight in your career so far?
We’re still babies in longevity terms, but the response to the debut single has completely blown me away, the outpouring of positivity and support really gave me a boost. Gig wise, we opened for the band Fangclub, who we absolutely love, and that was just killer.
How bright is the future of your band – what are the plans?
We’ve just released a video so that’s doing the rounds! I’m writing a load, and sitting on lot of music right now, but once the EP is ready to go we just want to get out there and play shows again. I think all the gigs after the lockdown ends are going to be huge, a lot of pent up energy. Once that catharsis is out the way and we’ve got around a bit, I’ll start thinking about EP 2 or a record.
When all is said and done, how would you like to be remembered?
I always say, if I can write even one song that helps someone the way that music has helped me then that’s worth it. But music is what I’ve always wanted to do, so if I can keep doing it and stay true to myself then I’m pretty sure I will have won.
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