Exclusive Interview: Al Bristow talks all things Weaponry!

Over the past year or so we’ve had the pleasure of seeing Reading Sludge meets Grunge Metallers Weaponry twice. Their live show is a sweaty mess with frontman Al Bristow being one for having a tendency to wonder around the stage and the audience should the moment take him. As a band, there are clear Tool and Deftones influences but we also know that Bristow himself is a fan of the brilliant No Worth Of Man and Gutlocker. Seeing as they’re doing a run of shows this month entitled “The Gasman Tour” we thought we’d get an insight into the World of Weaponry from frontman Al Bristow…

You posted a couple of live recordings on YouTube from your set at The Victoria in Swindon in June. There was a new cut called “Search For Life” that comes with the tag that you’re going to track it with Daly George at Ranch Production House later this month. So does this mean a new EP is on its way?
Honestly we’re still undecided! We might just keep doing the singles thing for now. Maybe we’ll wrap them up into an EP when we’re done just for that “completion” feel.

What’s it like being in a band that features a father and son and a pair of brothers in law? Are the wives and girlfriends on board with it?I thought it’d be a nightmare – like Oasis or something, everyone arguing all the time. It’s actually really great because we can be blunt with each other without someone getting annoyed because we’re family, so when it comes to telling someone a riff is rubbish or my lyrics are too cliche or generic it’s easy! It’s definitely a bonus. I would hope my wife is on board seeing as she’s Jay’s (Rozentals, Bass) sister! She is, she loves it. And his wife Faye takes a lot of pics and vids for us at shows.

Obviously there is a bigger age range in the band than you might otherwise get and with that comes a wider range of bands to be influenced by. Is everyone down with each others musical taste or is there some lovers of more eclectic stuff in the mix?
There’s a real good mix, lots of 90s bands. Dan (Ashworth, guitar) from the hair metal/grunge time, Marty (Drummond, drums) loves a lot of punk and thrash metal, I was around the grunge/nu metal /pop punk time. We like a lot of everything though to be honest. Jay just likes CKY and Biffy Clyro though! Max (Ashworth, guitar) likes a lot of the same stuff as the rest of us, but he seems to just love whatever tunes he can play on guitar (which is loads!! He’s a child prodigy haha).

We’ve seen you a few times with a wide variety of bands including Krysthla and Sunfall. If you got the chance to do a 14 night UK tour opening for a band from outside of our shores, who would you pick?
Dream bands? Me and Dan would definitely be Deftones. Jay would love a Foo Fighters tour but not sure how we’d go down with them! Realistic? I reckon if we knew the right people we could open for Code Orange! Me and Marty would be chuffed with that! Or maybe Vein. Nah let’s go big time, Deftones or nothing!

The August tour is called “The Gasman Tour”… We’re not going to lie, it makes it sound like a Dutch porn film! So what’s the story behind the name?
We’re all massive fans of the classic BBC comedy Bottom. We could probably quote every line between us all. It’s from a classic episode. Marty was the last person to join the band and none of us knew him before this but I think knowing that he was a massive fan too solidified his place in the band! Oh and the amazing drumming too, obviously… Our last tour was the Love Albatross Tour which is also from Bottom. Just a funny thing that we’ll probably stick with! 

“Search For Life” and “Moving to Andromeda”… Is there a love of science fiction going on?
Oddly no! Just a weird coincidence. “Moving To Andromeda” is about feeling a bit out of place when everyone is doing great around you, and using music to escape or feel like you belong. The song is littered with little hints towards bands or artists I love. The title and part of the second verse is a nod to the incredible songsmith Jamie Lenman and his old band Reuben’s song Moving To Blackwater. There’s also a bit that goes “Shikari told me, Andromeda would be a great fit for me, because I can breathe.” Which is because of Enter Shikari’s song “We Can Breathe In Space”. 
“Search For Life” is about receiving a terrible diagnosis that will change your life. If you were in charge you’d want to get it sorted there and then but you have to wait for appointments etc. Search For Life just seemed so appropriate as a title, searching for your life. My wife is a huge X-Files fan though… so maybe…

Of the bands you’ve played live with so far, who have been your favorites? Which bands are you looking forward to sharing stages with on the August dates?
We’ve played loads of shows with Awakening Savannah and they put on a lot of their own shows so I’ve got to do a huge shout out for them! Great band. We just played in Worthing with Faces of Eve, they were great. Can’t wait to play with them again next week. So many though, obviously Gutlocker and No Worth Of Man. Reventure were next level but unfortunately they have called it a day. And I don’t think they gig much but if you see In Awe are playing anywhere, get down there. They are an experience. We just played with Daryl Vorderman too who were fantastic – we played with them because of Sore Teeth’s Sunday Tea Time Hardcore show in Guildford. Sore Teeth are really building something there and I’m so glad we are a part of it. Big shout out to Pixee Presents in Reading too, not a band but an awesome promoter who has put us on a ton! Real grateful for that.

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