In the week that they released their third album The Renegades, Yashin set out on a four-date tour, starting in Glasgow. We sat down with vocalists Harry Radford and Kevin Miles for a chat…
Tell us a bit more about the band…
Harry Radford: We’re called Yashin and our album has just come out. This is the first week and we’re doing a small, intimate tour just to let everyone know that we’re back after being gone for three years.
Having heard something of the new album [The Renegades], it’s a bit of a melting pot genre-wise. How would you describe your own sound?
Kevin Miles: I think that’s a good expression to describe the album. It is a big throw-together of all of our influences, which aren’t the same. We don’t all go and buy the same album, listen to it at the same time and write an album as a result. We all like different things. All of my influences are from early 2000’s/late ‘90s nu-metal kind of tunes. Harry has a pop-punk influence, and Dave is very metal based in his drumming, so when you put all of those influences together, you’re going to get something that’s maybe a wee bit unconventional. I don’t think that’s a bad description of what we set out to achieve.
So what does influence the band?
Kevin: It’s difficult because we don’t set out to write a specific type of song, it just comes. More than half the songs are derived from something that Paul’s put together on the guitar, most often a heavy-based guitar riff. We come into the studio and Dave works on it, we work on it and then add the lyrics and the melody on it after that’s finished. Harry: The lyrics are all based around stuff in my life that’s affected us or the band, or things that I’ve seen that have upset me.
Can you tell us a bit about making The Renegades? What was behind it?
Harry: It took us a very long time! Longer than most albums take. It was made on a shoestring budget when we were doing it ourselves and then Sony came later on and they added a new producer, and we recorded it in York with the Graves brothers. There are two studios that you could track at the same time, and it’s in the middle of nowhere. You could have barbeques, go on bike rides and mess around. You can sleep in the studio, they’ve got beds and things there. It was nice recording it together. It was a long process, but we got there in the end.
What inspired you to push through that difficult time? I would imagine most people would have given up…
Harry: There were many times we wanted to give up. The second song in, I remember writing that song ‘The Beginning Of The End’ and that was just us, I mean, I remember being in the studio being like, this is essentially the beginning of the end like with this album, we promised it to people for so long and maybe we should just call it a day. Then Sony came along… Kevin: I don’t know. I think it’s kind of an unspoken rule in the band that we were going to chuck it when we stopped having fun with it. Despite all the difficulties that the band was having behind the scenes, the music was still there and we still love what we do. We’ve still got a hard-on for the songs that we were writing. Can I not say that?! We just had a belief in ourselves to just carry on. There’s no doubt about it, it was probably one of the most trying times of our lives. There was just a constant need to strive and move forward. We’ve been quiet for such a long period of time the people who stuck by us – friends and family – it was just incredible and it gave us the drive to carry on and come through that rough spell. But the album wouldn’t be what it is if not for that experience. It builds character.
What are you expecting from touring the new album?
Kevin: It’s just an opportunity for us to reawaken the renegades, effectively. We really associated with our fan base when we put this record together. We were chatting about it earlier on that people who come and see this band will talk to you and tell you things that they probably wouldn’t even divulge to their closest friends or their families. We have a connection with them that we wanted to really cement and put it in something that people could hold and say “I’m a part of this.” This is what these shows are all about. We wanted to keep them small just to try and get that feeling of intimacy and get close to the fans. It’s a chance for us to get back and see some of the same faces. This is why we do this, we want to be out on the road all the time. This is our chance to get back out and do some.
Finally, what bands are exciting you right now?
Harry: I like Bring Me The Horizon’s new album. They’ve just done exactly what they wanted. Everyone kept calling them a metal boy band. Fair play to them! I think it’s a really good album. I love Panic At The Disco’s new album, it’s their first number one in America and in the UK which is pretty cool. And Justin Bieber’s new album is awesome as well. Kevin: Mate, I can’t believe you just said that! Harry: It’s a good album! Kevin: No… Harry: Yep… Kevin: He’s shit! Harry: Have you listened to it? Kevin: He’s a wee arsehole! Harry: He is, but don’t be that guy – “he’s Justin Bieber so I have to say that I hate him.” If you listen to it, you might like it! Kevin: It’s not that. I’ve made my own decision that he’s an arsehole! The best albums recently are Atreyu – Long Live and Still Remains – Ceasing to Breathe. A couple of tips in there!
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