Hailing from Glasgow and the west of Scotland, a four-piece alternative rock band Layaway released their new single Finite this week. To support this song, the music video is released today. The second release of the 2019 Falling Knives is a very good song. Though I remember last Summer when I first listened to their follow up single Until Then which is the band’s last release, I was surprised to find how much their music has improved.
Finite begins gently with some sentimentality. While you are settling in, the tune changes the mood. You get an urge of anticipation which is something like a big wave coming any moment. This build-up is superb. Then they move forward to show you what they are all about. There are the powerful vocals which never strain on high notes, the lovely pitch and tone of the guitar, the bass being the backbone and the drums being a boss man with originality. Just like a good film, this song is moving and touching, and it is emotional. At the same time, the song is somehow uplifting, and that gives you hope.
Since the band was formed in 2016, they have released a 3-track EP and 6 singles and have been moving from strength to strength. Their 7th and new release Finite is the finest offering from the Scottish rockers. They have set the bar very high for themselves. I hope they know that my expectation is sky high now. The vocalist Stewart has talked to me about Finite along with other things. You can find the interview below.
Hello, Layaway! Thanks for talking to us today. Who are we having here?
I’m Stewart Matheson, vocals and guitar of Layaway.
Thank you Stewart. First of all, how have you been doing during the lockdowns?
Lockdown has been ok for me, the band keeps me busy. We do all our own recordings, so I’ve been busy mixing Finite recently. Outside of home I work in a key job, so I’ve been out working the entire time which has been good for keeping me in some sort of semi-normal existence.
Sounds like you’ve been keeping busy. But it must’ve been difficult as a band. Anyway, you are just about to release the new single FINITE. How would you describe this song in your own words?
Finite is a song that builds throughout, it’s quite dark and moody which is what we’re all about. It’s a song which really is a very good representation of what Layaway was started for. Write big, epic, cinematic songs. We’ve always strived for larger than life and ambitious music and I really think we’ve captured it with this one.
Thank you for sharing that. How do you normally go about writing your songs?
The songs normally start one or two ways. I will either come to the studio with a chord progression and lyrics of a song which the guys can then all do whatever they want on and we’ll debate sonically where we want to take the music. If we want to try something different, we’ll try it and see what fits around the chords and feel of the song. The second way is we may come up with a musical idea in the studio which we will jam around with and I’ll record it, work on it at home with vocals and lyrics, and then take it back to the guys and see if it’s the way we want to go. It’s all a very democratic and enjoyable process.
OK. Always interesting to hear about this topic. You have a new music video to support the release of FINITE. How did the filming go?
The filming for Finite was very challenging in that it was winter time and with lockdowns happening and everyone not really knowing what was going on, we just had to seize the moment when we could. We rent our own space at Unit 23 skatepark and we managed to negotiate with the park owner to go in after hours and film there. It meant logistically we could move the gear easily and we could make as much noise as we wanted, and it’s a massive industrial unit. The main problem was the cold which none of us anticipated, but we managed to get through it all in one day and really worked our socks off to get all the shots done in one sitting. It turned out great and we’re really happy with the result.
Right. It’s a cool place, and a great video! Well, what influences have you drawn from recently, with regards to your sound and message?
When it comes to me, I really listen to a lot of random songs. I’m obsessed with recording and gear and will listen to certain songs to hear specific styles of recording and equipment which is a bit random. I’ve been getting more into using analogue equipment, so have been listening to earlier the White Stripes and Kings of Leon records to hear the production styles on them. We’ve found that Finite in particular was a big movement forward for us production wise as we were committing to sound a lot more on the way in while recording. Creating more of a vibe to really tie in with the larger than life sound that we are striving for.
Great stuff. Does everyone in your band listen to similar music or musicians?
We all have a vast musical tastes, we all really like alternative music that has roots in rock but we all have our own little flavours of taste. Euan our drummer is really into his funk, Rob our guitarist is probably into the most heavy music but he has probably the widest taste in music, Fraser our bassist is a massive alternative fan and enjoys his post rock and I really like anything that is really big sounding and sound scapey.
Who, which bands do you dream to share a stage with?
There are so many great bands we’d love to share a stage with, bands like Biffy Clyro, The Xcerts, Twin Atlantic, 30 seconds to Mars or Jimmy Eat World would all be absolutely incredible to support.
Big ones! Hope your dream comes true sooner than you think! Which show is your most memorable show and also favourite show Layaway played?
I think we would all agree that playing the Barrowlands Ballroom as part of Glasgow’s pride festival was a highlight for all of us. I still remember when we got confirmation it was gonna be the main room, and we all looked at each other and just let out a little giggle or three. It’s just one of those places and stages we’ve all been to as kids growing up watching bands we love. It was a great show and we really just made an entire day of it.
Fantastic! What will be coming from Layaway next? Something more planned?
We are currently recording our follow up single for Finite, which should be out not too long from now. We’ve got five really good songs we’ve been working on over 2020 and we really can’t wait to get these ones out there as they’re a massive step forward for us when it comes to writing. The songs are just going to get sharper, punchier and more anthemic as the year goes on. We really can’t wait.
Exciting! Also an album maybe?! Is there anything else you would like to say?
Yeah thanks very much for taking the time to talk to us. It’s been a pleasure answering these questions. If anyone wants to check us out, all our socials are @layawayofficial. And we really hope to see everyone when gigs start up again. We’ve got a lot planned this year and getting out of Glasgow on the road again to see all our friends up north and down south would be an awesome icing on the cake for 2021.
Thank you for your time! Good luck!
( Teri Morris )