Interview – First Frontier

The song Break Away by First Frontier was featured in a round-up review and playlist of metal music that I completed recently. First Frontier have a really promising sound to their music – make sure you check them out if you like what you read below!

By Jane Howkins

You recently released a single titled Break Away, which we reviewed. What can you tell us about the track and where can it be purchased?

Break Away, our debut single, is a fierce, female-fronted rock song about cutting ties with bad companies/people in our lives. It’s about learning to break away from negative cycles that can churn us round and round forever if we let them. It can be bought wherever you buy your music online, although we prefer via BandCamp, who have done so much to help musicians in recent years: https://fi…dcamp.com/

You’re based in Birmingham. What is the music scene like in your part of the world?

Wonderful and unnerving. We’re hoping to follow in the footsteps of some rather incredible trailblazers, not least of all Black Sabbath. There’s so much depth to the music scene here too, so many influences and genres being explored. Many people don’t know much beyond central Birmingham, but venues like The Hare and Hounds, and The Castle and Falcon are such live music gems.

You’re a duo. Does this make it harder to write and perform your tracks, as compared to having a full band?

Yes and no. I’m a firm believer in finding creative expression in a limited space. Really, the act of creation is about eliminating possibilities. So when you have only two voices, drums and a guitar, you have to get creative. You’re catching us right at the start of our journey (Break Away’s our debut single), so we’re still figuring things out and having a lot of fun with it. I think when tastemakers listen to us blind, without knowing we’re a duo, they tend to think the tracks are perhaps a tad sparse, but when you listen into the knowledge that there’s only two of us making all that noise, you bring a different expectation to it.

What is the writing and recording process like for you?

It seems never-ending until that master track is printed. Paul often starts out with a riff and/or melody and then with Helena, he play around until something sticks. From there it could be complete in a week, as with Jagged Line, or a few months, as with Break Away.

Have you got any plans to release a full-length album or an EP anytime soon?

Our debut EP, Just Matter, is due for release on March 18th 2022, containing Break Away and 5 other tracks.

Do you plan to release any singles at any point in the near future?

We just released Jagged Line a week ago, Edging is out on Jan 14th and we have plenty more in the pipeline, including 2 more singles from the EP.

What/who influences you most as a band? What have you been listening to recently?

Impossible to answer. We both listen really broadly and try not to fixate on one band or style. But it’s really encouraging to us to see what other duos are up to out there.

Has the pandemic hindered your work much?

We were just starting to jam and write when the pandemic hit, so it stopped our plans in their tracks, as it did for so many other people out there. We did our best to turn a negative into a positive (so to speak), by building up the infrastructure of the band. There’s a lot of work for two people to handle, so this gave us time to figure a lot of things out about running a band in a safer, less pressured environment, which is fortunate in a way.

Do you have any tour dates lined up? What can people expect from one of your shows and why should people come and see you perform live?

We actually have no dates cemented in right now. If you’re a promoter who digs our music, do please reach out. We like our shows to be a mirror of who we are, fun, energetic, sliiightly intense and honest.

Any last words for the fans?

Hi mum.