Q and A: Don Blake

Manchester pop punks – who release their new album today – on that, the future, plus why they choose vinyl over Spotify, but they won’t do tapes 

  1. Tell us a little bit about Don Blake

    We have Rob & Joe who each play guitar, Kieron who plays bass and Nige who plays drums. We are a pop punk band from Manchester who have been around since 2012.

  2. Congratulations on the release of your record “Pocket Universe”, released digitally today via Round Dog Records.  I understand that a vinyl version is planned for later in the year, what can you tell us about that and when will it be released?

    Thanks a lot! We been really looking forward to getting the album out into the world! Round Dog is an awesome label to be a part of and there is some great stuff out/coming out on there.

    There will be a vinyl release. We hope to be able to announce the details very soon but we are looking to have it out in the next few months – around June.

  3. In the last three years of so vinyl seems to be the physical format of choice over the recent resurgence of tapes and eclipsing CDs.  How important is having a physical release to a touring band?  Will there be CD or tape versions too?

    It’s definitely important to have something to sell at gigs. Records are pretty much the perfect way to listen to music these days; you get a nice big version of the artwork and you have to listen to an album as intended without the distraction of every other song ever written on Spotify. I clung onto my tape Walkman for way too long so nostalgia for that format is yet to kick in for me.

  4. Speaking of touring, I understand that you are in Europe soon touring with Andrew Cream, how did that come about?

    We’ve been friends with Andrew for a long time and we also released a split 7” with him last year. We did a short UK tour together to support that and so it made sense for us to head to mainland Europe next. He has done a few European tours before but it will be our first time. Hopefully Rob’s French lessons will start to pay off.

  5. Turning back to the album, are there any running themes throughout the album?

    There is definitely a theme running through the album, which was pretty important to us as it’s our first full-length release recorded as a whole. I don’t want to get pretentious and over-explain, so I’ll just say that it’s our most overtly personal music yet, and that it being an album gave us more opportunities to try things out, especially compared to the 3 minutes of music that made up our last release!

  6. Last year you played Fest 13, will you be playing Fest 14 and/or touring with them next year?

    The Fest is unlikely this year – although we had an amazing time at Fest 13 and would love to play again. Touring the US more widely is definitely part of our plans, but we have to find the right time for us all to be able to do it at the same time.

  7. You have played a lot of shows both in your hometown (North West England) and beyond.  Who have you enjoyed seeing/playing with on the road?

    We always enjoy playing with the other UK pop punk bands who are doing well at the moment; The Murderburgers, The Kimberly Steaks and The Lemonaids are three that we love watching every time. It’s also been fun to play with non UK bands who have come over here; we did a few shows with Maladroit from France and we also played with Lipstick Homicide last year.

  8. Will you be touring to celebrate the physical release of the record?

    Yea, there will definitely be more UK touring this year. After that we would love to visit some more new places.

  9. Any other comments?

    Cheers for the chat!