Thursday 25th May 2017
May is turning out to be a great month for new releases so far this year, and my latest discovery are Northern alt-rockers The Firelight Opera and their latest single ‘Alive’, which is taken from their forthcoming album ‘Communication Breakdown’. What initially piqued my interest was that the band contains not one, but four vocalists. Sounds like a bunch of very talented guys don’t you think? Me too, and I’m already excited for the album release to hear more. I caught a moment with the band to find out about The Firelight Opera and how they’re feeling about the release of their album. Oh, and make sure you give ‘Alive’ a listen (link below), I promise you won’t be disappointed…
Hello! Please could you tell me a bit more about yourselves and how The Firelight Opera formed?
We are Chris Pettitt, Dan Foster, Lee Hardy, Ben Craigs and Kyle Martin. We’re an alternative/rock band from Sunderland which formed in the summer of 2012. We hit it off with songwriting and vocal harmonies instantly!
How did you come up with the name for the band and were there any other contenders?
The Firelight Opera came from a night of jamming and singing round a campfire. Also, like an opera we tell stories through our music. The lyrics are always deep and meaningful.
When did you all start playing music and have you been in bands previously?
We’ve all been playing music since school. We all performed in bands before The Firelight Opera was born. Chris, Lee and Kyle were gigging together since school but under a different name. Dan performed in another band and also did solo stuff and Ben also performed in bands.
What is your writing process as a band? How do you come together to create the final track and where do you take your inspiration from?
Generally, Lee and Dan write most of the lyrics and melodies then the whole band gets together and everyone puts their input in to bring the song to life. It works well.
Your album ‘Communication Breakdown’ is released on the 29th May. How are you feeling about the release and what can we expect from it?
We’re really excited for people to hear it! It’s got a bit of everything on it from huge rock anthems to stripped back acoustic tracks. All of the tracks have infectious melodies and catchy guitar riffs and there are plenty of vocal harmonies on there!
Are there tracks in particular that you’re most excited about getting out there?
At the moment we can’t pick a favourite. We were really excited to get ‘Alive’ out but we’re going to struggle to choose the second single. It’s a good problem to be faced with though so we’re not complaining!
With there being four vocalists in the band, how do you decide on who sings each part of a song and do you all get to take the lead on different tracks?
Having four vocals to play with makes songwriting really interesting! Chris and Dan have the biggest voices so they take most of the main vocals but Lee and Ben chip in here and there.
Who did you work with on the video for your single ‘Alive’ and who came up with the idea behind the story?
We worked with a local company in South Shields called Unified Media. Lee wrote the story/concept for the video and worked closely with the guys at Unified Media to bring it to its fullest potential. They were dedicated and worked relentlessly to make it work. We’d like to thank them along with Harry and Martin for their incredible performances.
What’s next for the band and will you be taking the album on tour?
This is something we’re currently looking into and hope to do soon. We’re excited to take our music further afield.
Finally, if you were invited to perform on the BBC Live Lounge, which song would you cover and why?
It would have to be House of the Rising Sun by The Animals. Chris has a huge voice and sings it better than the original (in our opinion, of course!).