Mixing punk, hardcore, rock and alternative sounds with an engaging, vibrant live show, Bury St Edmunds' Fleas have released a number of hard-hitting singles (and one EP 'Revenge Is Forever') and garnered plaudits from the likes of BBC Introducing since forming in 2019. Frontman Pedro answered a few questions for 'Ballroom Blitz's Man At The Back' about the band, favourite tracks, gigging and the Fleas' logo. Catch the band at The Hunters Club in Bury St Edmunds on 22nd April 2023 and check out their new single - a reissue of their track 'Nightmare'.
Fleas are Pedro Forte (Vocals), Jason Grubb (Lead Guitar), Sam Tolputt (Rhythm Guitar), Millie Honour (Bass) and Ryan Meyers (Drums)
EP 'Revenge Is Forever' (2022) and singles 'I Don't Really Like You', 'Dogs' (2019), 'Agartha', 'Switchblades', 'Burt' (2020), 'The Middle Of The End', 'Nightmare' (2021), 'Pills', 'Voices', 'Baby Faced Rage' (2022) and 'Nightmare' (2023) are available on all the major digital sites and the Fleas Bandcamp page - www.fleasband.bandcamp.com
Hi Guys, thank you for taking some time to answer a few questions for 'Ballroom Blitz's Man At The Back'. First off, for those readers who may not be familiar with Fleas, could you give a short history of the band?
Hey, thank you very much for having me! So we met at West Suffolk College where we all studied music back in 2018. One day some of us did a cover of 'Where’s Your Car Debbie' by Slaves for college and after that we just kept being in the same group which eventually turned to Fleas and we started writing our own stuff.
And who would you say were the main influences on Fleas?
When we first started out it would probably be Idles, Slaves and Rage Against The Machine. Now it might be more Show Me The Body and La Dispute.
You've recently reissued 'Nightmare', a track you first released back in 2021 - what were the reasons for you wanting to reissue the track?
Whenever we play that song live it always feels raw, emotional and real but the original was missing all of that, it didn't have any soul you know? So we essentially did a “live” version in an attempt to capture the song in its purest form.
And since its release in February, do you have a sense of how it's doing out in the 'big wide world'?
Well I believe it has been pretty well received. As far as I've seen our core audience like it more than the original which means it was the right call to make the reissue I guess.
We’ve also had some lovely reviews written about it from blogs in France and Brazil which is crazy to see it being appreciated beyond our hometown.
You have released an EP - 'Revenge Is Forever' - and a number of singles since 2019 - any particular favourite tracks and if so why?
Haha, oh, that's a tough one… For me my favourite to play live depends on my mood that day to be honest. For example if I'm in a good mood I love 'Stone Cold' just because it's a fun one to play for us and the crowd typically responds well which is always good. If I'm in a bad mood 'Nightmare' is a great one to let out all the emotions and just let go. Also 'The Interlude That You Expect' on the EP is just so different to anything we've done that I feel it at least deserves a mention.
Is there any song that you've written but not yet released that you're particularly looking forward to 'getting out there'?
Absolutely! There's this record we're working on right now called 'I’m Not Sure I Want To Be Saved.' It’s super cathartic for me lyrically, yeah that one will be cool eventually.
Any plans for a full-length album release?
In the future for sure! I think we would want the album to be a massive thing but we’re not quite ready for that just yet. We're focusing more on singles/EPs at the moment.
You have quite a distinctive band logo; who's responsible for the design of the logo?
It was actually our guitarist Sam’s sister! She made it for her university project and I think she got a first or something for that module so go her!
You've branched out into a number of different musical genres over the course of your releases - are there any further musical avenues you'd like to explore as a band?
There are some crazy tracks stored in the vault. Who knows at this point to be honest, maybe we’ll drop a drill song one day!
Do you have any shows coming up where people can catch you?
We’re doing a hometown show at The Hunter Club in BSE! (22nd April 2023). Super excited for it, for one, playing Hunter Club is always a great time and two, PLAYING WITH SUBSTATION AND SLEEMO!! This show is gonna be crazy.
Favourite parts of gigging? And least favourite parts?
This is cheesy but my favourite part is being with my best friends doing what we love.
Least favourite is probably going back to my “real” job afterwards.
Do you think there's a good rock / alternative scene in East Anglia currently? Any bands from the area you'd particularly recommend to readers?
Honestly the East Anglian scene is so incredibly talented. I could list so many but I'll be here for way too long. So just a few recommendations...
The list goes on, if you want to see the amazing music that’s out there just get yourself down to a gig.
And finally what plans for Fleas going forward in 2023?
Keep working on our craft, put on great shows and then world domination.