“Its 20/30 minutes of just forgetting everything going on in life and just enjoying the moment, that’s what makes hardcore different to most genres, the live shows.” shares Jay Valentine, vocalist of Manchester Hardcore mob, Guilt Trip. “The scene is really strong at the moment in certain ways,” Jay continues, “the DIY scene seems to be thriving as well in certain areas of the country such as Leeds and London.”

This subculture and grassroots engagement is exactly what fuels every genres scene, and un-categorisable sonic mess out there today, but the sleepless nights and months spent overcoming apprehension and writer’s block could all be just to momentarily capture the attention of a fleeting audience. “It is a really hard scene to keep ‘relevant’ and honestly I’m not sure on how we’ve kept the momentum after having almost a year away in 2018” shares Jay in a moment of candid uncertainty. “We have basically tried not to play too many shows, whilst staying in the scene and keeping a steady flow for the most part.”

But hardcore is a genre unlike any other in the alternate scene, it embodies a movement, a purpose backed by universal betterment without the burden of pretentious narcissism or judgment, a cause that will always remain truly timeless. “It’s probably one of the most outspoken genres on topics listed”, says Jay giving an insight into how hardcore maintains its appeal to him, “It’s something that will always be the same in hardcore too, speaking your mind and doing what’s right.”

“It’s probably one of the most outspoken genres”

With their latest bout of live performances, Guilt Trip is rallying behind a cause that truly lends itself to the catharsis every fan and artist alike can or have at one time appreciated. “Mental health is something that’s been buried deep and it’s finally being taken more seriously in recent years, it’s a great opportunity to raise awareness through music and shows.”

This energy is something only hardcore could embody in all its mediums. An intensity matched only by its cause. “It was my first real taste of hardcore and that’s what we wanted to do,” enthusiastically blurts Valentine, revealing how profound the influence of live shows has been. “We have achieved a lot more than we set out/expected to…We’ve always been a humble band, showing off just isn’t our vibe even though we are really proud of what we’ve been able to do, we are just excited about what may be around the corner!”

But even in success, the heart of hardcore is always in the brotherly camaraderie found amongst others rallying behind the spirit of the movement. “Over the past few years seeing bands like Knocked Loose, Vein and Code Orange completely break the boundaries of what hardcore bands can achieve is truly inspiring”, says the frontman, commenting on how the evolution of the genre and the new wave of artists experimenting in the fringes of the established is what keeps hardcore at the top of its game. “It’s all well deserved.”

“We have achieved a lot more than we set out/expected to.”

“Never release something you are not satisfied with’, continues the vocalist when detailing the mantra behind the band’s creative process for their latest release, ‘river of lies’. “There is nothing worse than hating your own music knowing everyone else is probably thinking the same.”

“Mid-2018 we had the album complete but decided to completely rewrite it when Tom (drums) joined the band, says Valentine, describing this choice as the hardcore outfit’s most difficult moment. “It was a big decision but 100% worth it, in the end, the second time around was different. The sound, the energy and the whole vibe of the band has changed.”

“We took the music down a darker route this time and focused more on the heavier side of Guilt Trip. We wanted to take the best parts from our live shows and earlier releases and do more of that. We also dropped down half a step on the tuning which changed the sound completely when comparing the releases.”

“There was no specific moment that the sound changed, but let’s just say I have been pissed off for 2 years in the lead up to the album”, chuckles Jay in a moment of humour. “I think anyone will still recognise that it is Guilt Trip straight away because of the vocals,” Valentine shares with audible pride, “they are still the same catchy gritty style they always have been.”







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