[Interview] Exclusive interview with Giant Walker

Dear readers, we are pleased to offer you an interview with an emerging English band Giant Walker, fresh from the release of their first single “The Fact In Fiction.”

> Hi guys, how are you?

Hey, we’re good, thanks!  We’ve just come off the back of a two day video shoot for one of our upcoming singles so we’re pretty knackered but also super hyped to see the finished video!

> You are a young band and you offer a sound described as Heavy Prog, where does the passion for this sophisticated genre and the passion for music come from?

Everyone in the band grew up in households where music was and still is a big deal. We all chased that cathartic feeling you get when you find a new song that you really connect with and this adds so much detail to the memories you have when you think back to being a kid. We’ve always listened to music that has emotional depth to it; music that tries to convey emotions that aren’t so black and white, as this reflects what real life is like. You tend to find this depth quite easily in the more progressive genres, so I guess that’s where the passion for it comes from.

> You are originally from Newcastle like the historic group Geordie, what do you have in common with this band besides the city of origin?

Musically speaking, probably not a lot, although we do like them!  Unfortunately, we’re from different generations so we can’t say we really hung out with them much!

> You have recently released your first single “The Fact In Fiction” what can you tell us about this production?

Yeah, it was released just over a month ago, although the song was written during the initial lockdown in Spring 2020 and then recorded back in February, so it’s really great to finally have it out into the world!  Because of the lockdown and also because Alex ended up relocating back up to the North of England, we wrote the song remotely which was very different to how we’ve written songs before. In a lot of ways, this really impacted the end result as we were able to get a much clearer idea of how the song would sound recorded, before we went into the studio. The song was produced, engineered, mixed & mastered by the awesome Chris Coulter (Arcane Roots, Jamie Lenman) at Stakeout Studios in Hampton and the videography was done by our good friend, Lee Tuck from The Garage Studios in South Shields.

> You also released the official video of this single, what is the song and video about?

THE FACT IN FICTION:

As the song was written in the initial stages of the 2020 lockdown, it was very much inspired by our experience throughout that. It was a weird time, and so our experience and our feelings at the time very much influenced the lyrics.  The title is drawn from the subtle truths and parallels that exist in dystopian fiction and the slippery slope to them becoming actuality. The song questions just how in control of your life you really are and the reality of being put at a disadvantage through other people’s actions and incompetence.  With the video, we wanted to highlight the contrast in ‘fact’ and ‘fiction’, hence the idea of one light room and dark room, playing into this idea of situations being black and white, when in reality things are often much more nuanced than we may initially realise.

OR OPTOPHOBIA:

The word ‘Optophobia’ is literally a fear of opening your eyes, so the lyrical concept is inspired, both by this, but also by the truth that our vision is merely our brain’s best guess of the world around us.  The song itself is quite hypnotising and so we wanted the video to be something that captured this, bringing together the literal meaning of ‘Optophobia’ and somewhat contrasting themes of Orwellian ‘Big Brother surveillance’.

> Massive riffs, hypnotic vocals and a solid rhythm session, how does the creative process of your sound take place?

As mentioned above, the pandemic and the various lockdowns have really influenced our creative process – probably one of the better things to have come out of the last couple of years!  Jamie (guitar) usually gets an initial idea, whether that’s a riff, chord progression or drum groove, expanded into a full song, then once the bones of the song are there, then Steff (vocals) comes up with the lyrics and either writes the melody separately, or collaboratively with Jamie.  Once the song is pretty much finished, Jordan (bass) and Alex (drums) flesh out their own parts, and then we have a song!

> The pandemic has affected many habits of daily life, how much and how did it affect your work?

As 3/4 of us are self-employed musicians it had a massive impact on our life.  We came out of it with a load of songs but in reality we’re still coming to terms with the fact that we’re nearly in 2022 and things still aren’t back to how they were, and they probably won’t ever be.  But there’s a lot of people who had it all a lot worse than us, for sure.

> Many of your fans and our webzine readers are wondering if they will be able to listen to you live, do you have any plans for that?

Yes!!  We have lots of plans for live shows in 2022 and some shows confirmed but not yet announced. Stay tuned!

> Given the release of your debut single, do you also have an album planned?

We have some more singles on the way which may eventually lead to an album…

> In an era in which more commercial and electronic genres are proposed, how difficult and if it is to emerge playing Progressive Rock?

To be honest, I don’t think it’s something that we really think of too much.  At the end of the day we’re just making music that we love and if people dig it then that’s a bonus! 

> The last question as usual on Progressive Rock Journal I leave it free to give you the opportunity to talk about a topic of your choice or not covered in the previous questions.

We would just like to thank everyone for checking out our music so far!  The response has been absolutely amazing and we really appreciate it!

We thank Giant Walker for their availability and for this interview, wishing them the best for their musical career and hoping to have them back in the pages of our webzine in the future.

Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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