The Rivalry on stage

The Rivalry describe themselves as “an alternative rock ‘n roll band from Stoke on Trent”.  They have recently revealed their new single – Start Of Forever – which I think is one of the tracks of the year fusing rock and dance music to create an emotional euphoric thrill of a record.  It shows they are destined for great things.  In an exclusive interview for this blog I found out more about them.

Who are you?

We are Rob Hawthorne (vocals, guitar, keyboards); Daz Mellor (bass); Rich Howshall (drums); and Rich Wheatley (keyboards)

How did you meet?

Rob and Daz started the band a few years ago. After a few changes, Rich the drummer joined us and then Rich Wheatley started playing the keyboards.


The band

Are you self taught artists or do you have formal musical training?

We’ve picked up things over the years from others but are mostly self taught.  We just take influences from sounds we’ve heard from different bands and djs/clubs over the years.  We like a piss up and a party and we always have music on to take influence from.

What have you done?

We have supported some quality bands that we grew up listening to such as Ocean Colour Scene, John Power (Cast), Proud Mary and also supported Status Quo at Betley Festival last year.

What was your first break in the business?

We started out gigging locally and gathered a good following.  This got us noticed and it has been going well ever since. At every local gig we see the same faces that have been there from the start which is mega!

How do you create your songs? Do you work as a group or do individuals work separately and then come together?

Rob writes and creates all the songs himself. He’ll have an idea, start to develop it and then take it to the studio and work on it with the guys. The idea can come from anything.


The band in a radio studio

Who has influenced your music?

We would say we have been influenced by all the genres and artists such as Northern Soul, Motown, funk, rock ‘n roll, through to house music. Bands include the Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Oasis, Happy Mondays, Electronic, New Order, Led Zeppelin, Charlatans, Stone Roses, The Music, James Brown, Fleetwood Mac….. We also like listening to various djs and remixes and we try to take this remix approach into our recordings and sets.

Your latest track is called Start of Forever. How did the song come about?

The phrase Start Of Forever came from a scribble on a wall. We set up our own studio and have a wall that people write on when they come in. Someone wrote the phrase on there and we thought that it summed up everything we were doing so we used it and created a song around it. The song itself is a mix of psychedelic rock with euphoric house so it’s a perfect blend of what we are listening to and playing at the minute. We’ve not really heard any other bands doing things like this but we think this song is what we are about.

When is your next live performance?

We haven’t got any gigs lined up yet because we are currently recording some songs. We will book some gigs in for the end of the year.

What are your ambitions for the future?

The ambition is to create something different, bring rock ‘n roll back to the forefront but with a twist. We would also like to tour the world, take mates out with us and have one massive party, buy a Bentley, take over the world and live to tell the tale…. Then do it all again!

While working on the interview I had a sneak preview of some of their forthcoming tracks. Their music is guaranteed to attract a dedicated following of passionate fans – expect to hear them on the radio, at a gig or festival in the very near future.

The Rivalry – Start Of Forever will be released on Rivalry Recordings soon.