Sanguine - 14/01/2016

Sanguine are a female fronted alternative metal/rock band with very big ideas.... Relentlessly gigging their local circuit and crafting a fiercely loyal fan base along the way, their first release was hugely anticipated and came in the form of 2009’s debut EP ‘Live, Consume, Drive’. 2012 followed with their self- titled debut album, produced with the help of Mikee Goodman (Sikth).

 

In 2013 Sanguine were introduced to Jesper Strömblad (ex-In Flames guitarist) and Daniel Flores to work on their next album, Black Sheep, their first professional studio album. The next year Sanguine spent recording and writing the album ‘Black Sheep’. The track "Empty" was co-written with Jesper Strömblad and the track "Breathe Out" features Jesper Strömblad on solo guitar.

 

It’s been 3 years since Sanguine’s last release, but they’re resurrected and armed with a powerful sophomore record. Produced by Daniel Flores (Crucified Barbara, Seventh Wonder)

 

In order to find out all there is to know about Sanguine’s latest album we tracked down frontwoman Tarin Kerrey, so here you can read what she had to say to the readers of Metal-Experience.com.

 

 

First of all, how are you doing? And congratulations on your new album ‘Black Sheep’, which will be released soon. Of course we’d like to ask you a couple of questions about it.

 

Tarin: Sure thing! Greetings from the UK and thanks for the interest! We are all doing well, it’s getting real busy with the up and coming album launch.… ‘Black Sheep’ is getting such great support from all over Europe…I’m glad we have time to talk!

 

Could you start this interview off with a short introduction of band, the origin of its name and how you guys got together?

 

Tarin: We chose Sanguine because it is a word of multiple meanings. It’s a word rarely used nowadays but it means the colour of blood but can also mean to be optimistic, confident or cheerful. We chose Sanguine because we felt this best represents us, we’re a fairly humorous bunch of people but we like the dark heavy music…the blood represent our love of metal/rock music and the cheerfulness represents our humour.

 

I formed Sanguine back in university, put out some adverts for some musicians, that’s how I found Matt Feld (drums). I then kept looking for extra guitarists but no-one fitted the role so I asked Nick Magee (guitars), who I knew from back in college to join the band, then Ross Andrew joined a few years later… Originally we started out as a prog-rock band, but it didn’t end up sounding like prog-rock…we were too heavy! One day the boys asked if I could scream over the music…I’d never tried before so I asked Nick (the guitarist) to show me how to scream. He showed me then I screamed…it was that simple…it felt like second nature to me to scream as well as sing so we went with it. I think that’s why Sanguine is so diverse in sound…we’ve never confined ourselves to sounding like anyone we just do what we feel is best for the song, but we’ve taken on board a shed load of influences.

 

What were the goals you had in mind when you started this band?

 

Tarin: In Sanguine there were no set goals but instead milestones that we wanted to hit as musicians and looking back on our career to date we’ve actually succeeded quite a few of them! For example, Goal 1 – play at an internationally recognised rock festival… we played Download back in 2012 which was a mind-blowing experience. Goal 2 – play with our heroes….I managed to sing backing vocals for Adrian Smith (Iron Maiden) and Mikee Goodman (SikTh) on the Primal Rock Rebellion project…then Sanguine went on to work with Jesper Strőmblad (ex-In Flames guitarist) on the Black Sheep album. Goal 3 – travel the world for free whilst playing music! – we’ve travelled to Sweden, Germany, Spain, Los Angeles and Vegas in order to create this record…it’s been an amazing experience…I suppose we will keep adding milestones, it’s all part of the Sanguine journey!

 

 

How did you launch into writing material for your album ‘Black Sheep’, could you tell something about the process?

 

Tarin: After the first album we set about writing again, no restraints…just wrote whatever naturally flowed. So we built up a lot of songs. Then we got a call from our managers saying that Jesper Strőmblad wanted to work with us. We couldn’t believe it, but we got the call to go to Sweden and write some stuff with Jesper!

 

When we got to Gothenburg we met with Jesper and Daniel Flores (Producer) and exchanged ideas, we showed him what ideas we had for the album already and Jesper played us a catalogue of ideas he had. We exchanged ideas…he gave us the riff for “Empty” and we gave him a verse and chorus for “Breathe Out”. We went away buzzing!

 

The next day Jesper booked us into the In Flames Studios. We worked on the songs and laid down the demos…it was such an easy process…Jesper’s guitars…Daniel’s production…it worked, so we knew we were on to something.

 

After Sweden we came back to the UK and sorted out the songs for the rest of the album…sifting through our back catalogue and writing more new songs to fit the album. We then returned to Sweden this time working with Daniel in Stockholm recording the album…it really was an adventure making this album.

 

What approach did you take to write those songs?

 

Tarin: Because “Empty” and “Breathe Out” were already demoed, during our writing session with Jesper/Daniel, these songs outlined what the next album breadth would be. “Empty” being the heavier side of the album and “Breathe Out” being the lighter side. We already had a lot of the songs written and waiting to be recorded. We then short-listed the songs that fitted alongside “Empty” and “Breathe Out”… like any artistic process we then realised there were gaps or we became inspired as we were putting the album together and we just kept writing….Sanguine never stops writing…I think at the current moment in time we already have another album’s worth of songs waiting to be demoed.

 

Could you please describe the implications of the title ‘Black Sheep’, what does it stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?

 

Tarin: In the early days we always felt like the black sheep of the music industry, the odd one out.., we didn’t sound like any of the other bands and we played with so many different acts. One day we’d be invited to play alongside black metal bands at Bloodstock, the next time we would be playing with William Control! Because we are heavy but also melodic and we write a mixture of styles (metal, punk and rock) and I sing and scream, we fitted everywhere but nowhere…so we felt like the black sheep of the industry. It’s not a depressing thing everyone likes black sheep…black sheep are more interesting, to be the only black sheep in a flock of white sheep is to be unique! With this record we plan to create a black sheep army…for anyone who has ever felt like the odd one out…this record is dedicated to the underdog.

 

Could you please describe the implications of some of the titles of the songs, where do they stand for and is there a special meaning behind them?

 

Tarin: Social Decay – this song is about the histrionic nature of the world, governments repeat a narrative that you should be fearful, stay inside, do as you are told. We used a 1930s film Reefer Madness for the video to illustrate the fear propaganda governments sell to their people…the film features people losing their minds on marijuana, eventually it surmounts to an act of murder…the film is ridiculous but it didn’t seem ridiculous back in the 1930s. In the UK marijuana is still treated by our government as an evil drug that will make you mad…we’ll just ignore the growing evidence for cancer and pain treatment shall we?

 

Whole world – this song is about wanting to see the world…it’s a mission statement for the band. We all want to travel and play music and this song reminds us of that yearning, that craving to see and do more! That insufferable curse of being human…I want more I want the whole world.

 

Pretty Girl – this song is about misogyny…how it’s hard to be seen as feminine as well as strong. I have to play both roles and sometimes men find that hard to handle. This song is about being a girl from my perspective…it’s a bit tongue in cheek about how I see things.

 

Breathe Out – is a personal song about trying to reconnect with my best friend, when I thought I was losing him. It’s a pretty emotional song and still brings a tear to my eye if I’m alone in the room.

 

What is the utmost important ingredient for a Sanguine song according to you?

 

Tarin: We never reject an idea that someone is passionate about…this doesn’t mean that any old crap gets through. It’s more about giving everyone the platform to be heard if they are passionate about a song idea. We work on the idea, give it air but if it doesn’t set us all on fire we add it to the bone-yard pile. Sanguine has always had a very artistic approach to what it does, we are all really artistic or passionate about what we do…I think that’s what comes across and why we don’t have 10 songs on the album that sound exactly the same.

 

 

How would you describe this album to someone that has never listened to the band before?

 

Tarin: Eclectic, heavy, dark, female fronted, guitar music. It’s not all screaming, and it’s not all singing. We vary our style of song according to what we are trying to say. I would ask that you listen to the whole album… ”Social Decay” is straight-up mental.., “The Blue” will chill you out… there are extremes on this album but it’s always Sanguine taking you on the journey. We wrote these songs from our hearts, in a variety of moods and we hope that you fall in love with at least one of them!

 

Can you tell us a little about yourself and the kinds of things that motivate you in your writing, your poetry, and your lyrics?

 

Tarin: It can be anything really… it all comes from a personal level. It’s always based on a social commentary or a certain personal situation. Lyrics just come to me… sometimes I’ll be writing a song and I have no idea what the words mean… then I realise it’s normally about something that has been playing on the back of my mind. It’s like my sub-consciousness speaks to me through lyrics sometimes!

 

What are you personally into?

 

Tarin: Art – anything art based. There’s nothing I do that isn’t based around creating something from nothing. I’m into making short films and music videos. I normally do the art direction or editing for projects. I paint, I draw… I do most of the artwork for Sanguine. If there is something I can make with my hands… I will try and make it! I’ve always been that way… I was the kid who would collect all the toilet rolls in the house and try and make a rocket ship!

 

Art is my passion…I love talking to people who have a passion… it doesn’t matter what you are into as long as you are passionate about it… if you are into running or cycling, good on you!… I couldn’t do it, but I respect anyone who has a passion in life.

 

What is your opinion on the metal scene these days?

 

Tarin: What scene? Haha! Only joking… I think it’s different everywhere but in the UK the metal scene has been hit hard by the closure of smaller live venues. 100s of venues have closed, due a mixture of reasons but recession, inner city development and the request for more housing has forced the smaller venues to close. There is also no where for under 18s to go out and see bands. I remember going to my first gig when I was 14 and it was in my local town’s social club… the smaller venues are important to introducing young people to real music.

 

The metal scene now seems to focus on festivals… nothing wrong with that as this is the only chance young people get to see their favourite bands. But you have to remember that seeing a band at a festival is not the same as being face to face with a guitarist sweating his tits off!

 

What do you think of the overload of bands and releases at the moment and is there anything missing in the scene?

 

Tarin: I hadn’t noticed! I don’t really follow the scene… typical Sanguine to be honest. We are not hipsters, if we like something we listen to it… that’s why we are so eclectic in our song writing. I suppose I’d like to see more female fronted bands breaking through… hint hint!

 

Could you respond to the following terms in just one word or sentence?

 

Metal: my life

Underground: rabbits..I love rabbits!

Internet: my work…my communication

Religion: agnostic

Politics: greed, power, control

The Netherlands: free thinking people

UK: a home I wish I could drag into the sun… it’s bloody cold and rainy here most of the time!

 

Which goals did you have when started out as a musician and how do these goals stand now?

 

Tarin: It’s funny to look back on it now but we always set out with the intention to do music for a living. Myself and Nick especially have always wanted to become professional song writers. To write music or produce art of some kind for a living has always been my personal goal. I’m happiest when I’m creating so I’ll never stop creating music.

 

What makes Sanguine different from the other metal bands out there?

 

Tarin: People have always said it’s my voice that makes them recognise a Sanguine track… the juxtaposition between my screaming and singing. I suppose whatever style I’m singing in I’m never trying to sound like anyone else, I’m just trying to be the best I can be. We’re female fronted but we also have Nick’s vocals, which adds a unique dynamic, which I think is also important when listening to Sanguine. Mine and Nick’s voices are fairly distinctive and they go together in a unique way. Top that with some awesome riffs and you have Sanguine.

 

What can we expect from Sanguine in the near future, do you have any touring plans?

 

Tarin: Yep – we are booking tours now. The album is due out in the UK, Europe and Japan so we are planning on hitting those territories. So watch this space!

 

Anything you want to say to our readers, here is your chance?

 

Tarin: Stay sanguine!

 

Thanks for your time,

Eugene Straver

 

 

Line-up:

Tarin Kerrey – Vocals

Nick Magee – Guitar/vocals

Ross Andrew – Bass

Matt Feld – Drums

 

Albums:

2009 - Live, Consume, Drive (EP)

2012 – Sanguine

2016 – Black Sheep