Interview With 'Bear Witness'
Firstly, introduce yourselves and tell us a little bit about the band and how you came to be?
Matt: I'm Matt Georgiou and I'm the singer and guitarist in Bear Witness. Me and my brother formed the band in 2014 when the band we were in at the time was effectively falling apart. The singer had been really unreliable and so it kind of destabilised everything and made it very hard to organise practices. We decided to start a band as the two of us with the focus being on making the best songs possible.
Alex: I'm Alex Georgiou and I'm the drummer in Bear witness. I'm Matts brother and we formed the band in 2014. I've been in bands with Matt since he was 10 and I was 8. Theres been lots of ups and downs but we always come back to having fun making music together.
Liam: I’m Liam Mead and I’m the bassist for Bear Witness. I met Matt and Alex in November 2017 and joined the band shortly after. Since then I’ve had an amazing time playing gigs and writing music with them.
What were you all up too prior to the band, was this always the chosen path or did you have other dreams and aspirations?
Matt: For me music has been the only thing I've ever wanted to do. I started playing guitar when I was 10 and from then on I was in bands and writing songs. It was the only aspect of life that really made sense. There was one short period when I was 14 where I was really into the idea of being a property developer haha, but that was just a phase.
Alex: Ever since I watched the Green Day 'Bullet In A Bible' DVD I've always wanted to be a drummer. I think I was around 8 at the time and I thought drumming looked like the coolest thing in the world other than being a Pokemon trainer, but that was unfortunately never gonna come true haha.
Liam: The first time I really wanted to be a musician was after I saw Linkin Park live. I was 14 and at the time and I remember having an important exam the next day (which didn’t go well). It was such an amazing and inspiring night. Shortly after, I got my first bass and I’ve pretty much been in bands since then.
Tell us about your latest EP and why our readers should check it out.
Matt: Our latest EP was called 'Dreams Of Fame' and was released in February of this year. The main reason I would give for giving it a listen is that we work as hard as possible to ensure that the songs themselves are good. So whatever genre you're into, if you listen to it you will hopefully get some enjoyment out of it. We try and make the rhythms exciting, the melodies catchy and moving, and the arrangements interesting. Overall it's an Alternative Rock EP but it's pretty varied with elements of Funk, Pop and Indie throughout. If you like bands like Highly Suspect, Nothing But Thieves and Nirvana then hopefully you'll enjoy the record. We also have a new single 'Perfect Living' out on 18.01.2019 which we're very excited about so keep your eyes open!
Alex: I think one of the main reasons that the readers should give the 'Dreams Of Fame' EP a listen is that theres definitely something for everyone in there. We worked pretty hard to make sure that each song has something different and has almost a personality of its own. Some of the songs have a funky almost Prince like vibe and others feel heavy and gritty.
Have you ever come face to face with someone within the music scene who has left you awestruck and why?
Matt: There's never been anyone in particular to be honest. There was one guy who would always play at the local music bar in Worcester where me and Alex grew up called 'The Marrs Bar'. I think he owns the place. He would always start open mic nights with an acoustic set and his ease on stage was definitely inspiring. He looked so comfortable and had this charisma that the audience were really feeding off. I always use him as motivation for good stage presence.
Alex: I've never come face to face with anyone that inspires us but I've gotten pretty close at gigs. Every time we go and see someone we've looked up to for so long we always come away feeling inspired and with an almost new desire to get where they were standing. I really hope if we ever get anywhere we can make people feel the same.
Liam: I once met a few members of Of Mice & Men after a gig which was pretty cool. Whilst their music differs from what I write or play, I have always been inspired by their stage presence and how they engage the crowd during live shows. As we move forward as a band, I only hope we can emulate their achievements and impact on their fans.
If we were to head out to one of your live shows what can ourselves and others expect?
Matt: We try to put on quite an exciting uptempo show. So hopefully some dancing and bouncing around like an idiot from everyone involved! We really love the songs we play and I think it comes across when we play them, we get quite into it haha. We have certain songs like 'Liquid Diamond' that are fan favourites for singing along and so that's always a nice feature of the show when I stop in the chorus and the words get sang back to me.
Alex: Its pretty crazy to be honest haha. We put alot of effort into set lists and all the little things we do on stage. One huge thing for us is stage presence; I know from a personal point of view drummers who go crazy on stage inspire me to play the drums. They just make it look so fun and I think if people are watching some random guy they've never met go mental on stage it makes it easier in a way for the crowd to enjoy it. I just want people to leave thinking "man that band were good live and they really looked like they were loving it up there".
Liam: You can expect to have a great night of live music as there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Our set includes upbeat songs, heavy Alt Rock and some softer ballads. It’s always great when you look at the crowd and see people dancing around and singing along. It makes for an incredible atmosphere and reinforces my desire to pursue music as a career.
If you had one artist/band that you could o on tour with tomorrow who would it be and why?
Matt: Nothing But Thieves, they just seem like really cool down to earth guys and I absolutely love their music.
Alex: Twenty One Pilots for sure, they just seem like such awesome chill guys who make amazing music. They also tend to do a few songs in each set which they play with the support bands. They're currently touring with Awolnation and I feel like all 3 of us could defintely smash a cover of the Titanic theme song haha (they've played that before).
Liam: For me, it would be The Wonder Years. Their live shows have been so incredible and I would love to share the stage with them.
You can spend an hour with a musical icon living or dead, who would you pick, why and what would you speak about?
Matt: For me it would probably be Eddie Vedder. He's meant to be the nicest guy and he's been through so much over the years. It would be amazing to pick his brain about everything that he's done. I also heavily relate to some of his early Pearl Jam lyrics about the insecurities that come with being young and so it would cool to ask him what advice he'd give the younger version of himself, and then see if that relates to me at all.
Alex: Jeff Goldblum the pianist... I'd probably ask him more about Jurassic Park than anything else, but man is that guy crazy I'd like to have a bit of what he's on haha. But in all seriousness mine would be Brandon Boyd from Incubus, I love pretty much everything they've made and he writes such amazing poetic lyrics. I'd love to get to have a chat to him about all sorts of things. He seems like an awesome dude!
Liam: Jack Black. There’s no deep meaning behind it, I just think spending an hour with him would be hilarious.
And finally and most importantly is Die Hard a Christmas Movie?
Matt: It has snow and features christmas trees. Easily a christmas film in my book. Fun for the whole family!
Alex: I wouldn't say so I mean it could be set on any other day of the year and be the same film. I feel like in order to be a Christmas film it needs to have some relevance to the story or you know the film needs Santa to pop up somewhere haha.
Website - www.bearwitnessband.co.uk
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/BearWitnessBand/