Alternative Friday

helping to spread the word about impressive new & under the radar musicians

Photos by Cameron Craggs

Newcastle Upon Tyne 3-piece Motel Carnation are a new band, with just one track released to date. Dig deeper though, and you find it’s collective of some of the finest CV’s from the local music scene as, from left to right (above), we have Austin Tweddle (vox, guitar, & Scalesia), Conor McBride (drums, Deep.Sleep, & Casual Threats), and Alexander Soper (vox, guitar, & Coquin Migale). That teaser track, Saul, hints at both a moody-psychedelic and indie-dance sound for the band, so read on as we chat to Alex about the formation of the trio, their first release, Ozzy Osbourne’s driving potential, and chicken wings!

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~ It’s good to know you’re back with a new band, so what brought you, Austin, & Conor together to form Motel Carnation?
Hi Jim, thanks for having me. I guess sharing a desire to create music we simply enjoy plays a big part. We were all aware of each other’s bands too. Myself and Conor have been very good friends for years and have been meaning to make music together for a long time. Always pestering me he was.

~ What brought the end of Coquin Migale, and what have you been up to between then and the start of Motel Carnation?
Talking about Coquin Migale is a tough one for me. I of course don’t mind the question, Jim. Things just became rather stagnant. Life gets busy and the lads had all their own things going on. I don’t blame them but things just weren’t working out. It’s no-ones fault. We achieved a hell of a lot in our time and I’m proud to have done the things we did together. Since then I’ve been doing a lot of writing, working, and watching tv dramas.

~ Tell us more about the debut track Saul? You’ve said that it’s a love song, but from a one-sided and unreciprocated relationship?
That’s right. Elements of the track have been taken from first hand experience, yes. I’ve been on both ends, played both roles. I took in a lot of inspiration from other peoples relationships, friends, and friends of friends etc.



~ What, if any, influence does living in Newcastle have on your music?
Newcastle is a very proud city. That’s something I love about it and the people in it. The bands here strive for success which I find inspiring. Everyone’s trying to break through! I still feel like an outsider, despite living here for 8 years now! I’m hoping on my tenth year, Shearer, Gazza, PJ & Duncan will hold some sort of ceremony, a blessing perhaps, for me to become a fully fledged Geordie?

~ Are there any other new bands or musicians local to you that you recommend we check out?
There are indeed, yes. There are so many great local bands and the north east is an absolute powerhouse. The Pale White, FEVA, The Old Pink House, PLAZA, Twist Helix, Callum Pitt and of course Sir Sam Fender are personal favourites of ours.

~ If you could borrow a musician from another band for a day who would it be?
Good question. We could do with a live keys player / electronical wizard, so I think maybe Edwin Congreave from Foals. That would be the more sensible option right now.



~ Aside from music, do you have any other creative skills? (or obscure talents!)
Not really, Jim to be honest with you, however I can eat a kilo of wings incredibly fast!

~ Who would you love to get to drive the Motel Carnation tour bus?
Heck, there are so many to choose from. However, I think Ozzy Osbourne would be an absolutely crease.

~ Who are your musical Guilty Pleasures? Don’t panic, no one will read this bit!
One Direction and Little Mix pop up a lot in our playlists, I’m not going to lie.

~ What are the band’s plans for the rest of 2019, and when can we expect to see you live?
We’re gonna release a few records and see what happens. We’re just going to enjoy it and hopefully pick up some cool shows along the way. We’ve actually just booked our debut home show which is, right now, an exclusive as the event hasn’t been created yet. This will be the 6th of July!

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