Thursday 8 March 2018
University of Northampton graduate Brady Deeprose is riding a wave a critical acclaim with his band Conjurer.
Hailed by metal Bible, Kerrang!, as the UK’s best new metal band, the Midlands four-piece are set to release debut album Mire on Friday – and the record has already been lauded by the national music press.
While praise from the industry inkies is impressive, Conjurer have also been creating ripples in the mainstream media landscape too – with Mire streaming exclusively on The Independent website all week long.
We caught up with Brady, who graduated from our Music Practice & Production course in 2014, to find out more about Conjurer’s meteoric rise, his time at the University – and his advice for our current crop of music students.
Q: From being formed in 2015, receiving rave reviews in Kerrang! and having your debut album streamed by the Independent, from the outside, it looks like things have happened fast for Conjurer. What’s the past three years been like for you?
“It’s one of those funny things where as soon as there’s a large amount of media attention, a band can seem to suddenly ‘break’ and come out of nowhere – in reality, we’ve spent the last three years playing everywhere across the UK and building up our live reputation. We were signed to Holy Roar Records for the release of our debut EP in 2016 and have since played around 150 shows including festival appearances at Bloodstock, Damnation, and Doom Over London. It’s been an absolutely hectic few years and, with our album Mire due to be released this Friday, this year is already looking more hectic than usual.”
Q: Why do you think Conjurer have received such critical acclaim? Some bands can go for years and never get ‘discovered’. What do you think has been the key for you guys?
“I think there are a couple of factors, the first being that it’s just the ‘right time’. By that I mean the heavy music scene globally is going through a period of transition whereby people are far more open to experimentation and new sounds than ever before. Bands like Code Orange getting a Grammy nomination and Employed To Serve being on the cover of Kerrang! has shown the world that heavy music is vital and worth listening to. Regardless of how open the general public is to certain sounds, the music needs to deliver and I truly believe our new record does. We have a strict level of quality control, making sure that we aren’t putting any element into a song that we wouldn’t 100% stand behind. Lastly, I think we’ve toured so much and given consistently intense, honest performances – people react to a band that are working hard and being genuine about it. Also loads of pure, dumb luck.”
Q: What’s next for the band?
“As I mentioned, with our album coming out on Friday, we’re going to promote that hard this year with some exciting one-off performances coming up, a few tours, an insane festival season and our first few forays into Europe. We’re also working on our follow-up to Mire and a second top-secret project that I’m not even supposed to be mentioning – this band never stops.”
Q: What did your course teach you? Would you recommend it to others, and if so, why?
“I think the course at Northampton really allowed me the space to develop my performance skills, technical ability and background knowledge of the history of music. Nathan Wiseman-Trowse [Senior Lecturer in Popular Music] really pushed an open mind when approaching music, something which has been at the foundation of Conjurer’s sound from day one, and really opened my eyes to a lot of the more avant-garde side of the musical spectrum. I think the people on the course that have benefited the most were those that have a passion for live performance, people like myself and Jordan Mackampa, and I’d certainly suggest going for it if that’s your goal.
The course also got me into tons of new music, from things we had to study to just mingling with a diverse bunch of musicians every day, so my love affairs with Frank Zappa and Devin Townsend are a direct result of that melting pot.”
Q: Did you take part in the final year Roadmender student band showcase? This year’s one is later this month – what bit of advice can you give the third years about their upcoming show?
“I did indeed! I’m pretty sure I got up on stage and ripped my shirt off during a Zappa song I was attempting to sing.
I think there’s a fine line between a flawless, perfectly technical performance and something that’s genuinely exciting and invigorating – it’s really easy to fall down on the wrong side of that. I’d say make sure you know the songs inside out and rehearse far more than you think is appropriate – and then just have fun. You can tell from the back of a room if a band is gelling and enjoying themselves and it will 100% make a difference to your grade. Don’t hold back anything and make sure you warm up properly before you go on stage, this will stand you in good stead for touring.”
Conjurer are pictured, from left: Conor Marshall (bass), Dan Nightingale (vocals/guitar), Brady Deeprose (vocals/guitar) and Jan Krause (drums)