Black Moth Interview @ Damnation Fest 2014

Interview by Kate Prothero
Photography by Graham Hilling

After a triumphant performance at this years Damnation Festival, we caught up with guitarist  Jim Swainston and drummer Dom McCready of doom/stoner merchants Black Moth to chat the roller coaster year they have had.

Black Moth
Black Moth

Really enjoyed your set guys, I haven’t seen you since back in the early days of the band, what the hell have you been up to? it certainly looks like you’ve been working really hard!?

I think its the touring, we’ve done a lot this year, played a lot of festivals! We were at Temples, we played Desert Fest in Belgium which was amazing, Truck Festival, and we were at Live at Leeds as well, which was really nice, we’re quite heavy in comparison to most of that line up and people seemed to really like it. It’s been busy, but great!

Black Moth
Black Moth

You seem to get booked on a wide variety of line ups, from today with Bolt Thrower to playing on the same line up as indie bands, is that something that makes you happy? Is its a conscious thing?

Yeah, it does seem to be that way, we like that people don’t feel they need to pigeon hole us.

You’ve been around for about 4 years now, how are things now in comparison to when you first started? Are things easier now, or does your success come with a different set of problems?

There is always a constant tension between being in a band and your regular life, more recently that tension has got more intense. We’ve done about 50 plus shows this year, so about a show a week. It gets harder and harder to maintain your day job at this level, Harriet had to give up a job so we could do the Uncle Acid tour a while back. The struggles change, back in the beginning it was a struggle to get people to notice, now it’s just different – awesome, but different.

Black Moth
Black Moth

The new album ‘Condemned To Hope’ has been out for a few months now, its had some pretty spectacular reviews and seems to have you pinned as a band to watch, that must feel amazing!

We’re all really happy with it! The album got into the top 40 UK Rock chart which was weird, but nice. It does give you a feeling of accomplishment. People that got into us early on really liked it too, which was really important to us.

So, whats up next for you guys? After a pretty busy year are you going to take some time out?

Nope! We’re on tour in Europe with a band called ‘Antlered Man’, who are on our label ‘New Heavy Sounds’. We were lucky enough to get some funding from the government, the BPI, to go and tour abroad.

That must be great! You don’t often hear about music being supported by the government, that must be a big pressure to be out there flying the flag for British metal?

Well, it was weird, the other bands that got the funding are a lot bigger than we are, so we were really surprised.

Black Moth
Black Moth

That’s interesting that you say a lot of the bands that got the funding were bigger than you, I suppose it must be really hard to gauge how big you are?

It is difficult when you’re on the inside to tell how well you’re doing. There are the usual things like Facebook and twitter ‘likes’, but they don’t really tell you that much. I think it’s all about how many people you have at your shows, and at big events when you’re playing with huge and legendary bands, and  there are still loads of people that come and see you play, an entire room full of people that have come to watch a bunch of idiots from Leeds.

With more tours and an ever growing fan base, the future is bright for Black Moth. They have a really healthy attitude and an enviable work ethic that a lot of bands could learn from, I’m a massive fan and can’t wait to see what they get up to in 2015!