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Tinyfish's debut album was released in 2007.


What are you currently up to?

We're knee deep in recording the follow up to our debut album but unlike the first time, where we released the record under our own steam, we are currently talking to a well known progressive label with a view releasing this new recording through them. Watch this space…

Brief history of Tinyfish for those who may not be familiar with the band...

Tinyfish has its roots in an acoustic band called Men Are Dead which played the open mike spots of London, as our songs became more and more complex, we found ourselves outcast for daring to play songs longer than three minutes and refusing to worship at the feet of Punk (yes, there are still people out there who believe that being able to play your instrument is a bad thing!).

As a result, we put our acoustic guitars back in their cases and struck out on our own as a full electric band. Occasionally, I sneak back into the odd acoustic club and attempt to play Close To The Edge but I'm out on my ear before I get past the opening section. Bloody tossers!

Could you take us through the debut album?

Ah well as mentioned above, the songs on the debut album came together as simple attempt to push beyond the three minute format.

However, in order to encourage as much creativity as possible, we also chose to steer clear of some of the traditional progressive comfort zones and decided to forgo keyboards in favour of using guitar synths.

There are many people who can perform a mini-moog solo much better than us so we thought, why re-invent the wheel? We've also used spoken word passages (courtesy of our lyricist Rob Ramsay), which is a bit of forgotten art in prog. I don't think anyone has attempted it seriously since Marillion's 'Script For A Jester's Tear'.

When it came to recording the album, we had no money to hire a professional recording facility, so we built our own studio from scratch in an abandoned loft.

There was a lot of work involved but it has enabled us to develop ideas without having to run up huge studio bills. We dubbed the space 'The Crow's Nest' and it has become our base of operations for all things Tinyfish related.

How did the band feel about getting into the 'Classic Rock' top albums of the year list? How have the reviews been generally towards your album?

We were over the moon about it! We are a new band and had no idea that we would figure in the poll at all, so to make it into their top 15 was a nice surprise. So far, the reviews have been very positive.

Personally I never fear the bad reviews because at least the person writing had a reaction. It's the lukewarm commentary I feel bad about because it means we didn't emotionally connect with the guy or girl giving us a spin.

Any good rock 'n' roll tales to tell?

I guess being invited on stage to help out in a raffle while the members of Pain Of Salvation stood ready to play at the side of the stage, sticks in the mind. The bemused looks on their faces at the tableau before made me laugh as such a thing could only happen in England.

What have been the live highlights so far for the band and who ideally, would you like to tour with & why?

Playing at the 2007 Summers End Festival was great as it was the moment I felt we had really arrived on the UK Progressive scene. Everything just came together for us that day. The crowd were incredibly into it, and as the festival was the last date of our tour, we really opened the throttle and gave them everything we had.

As for who we'd like to tour with, I guess that high on the wish list would be either King Crimson or Marillion. Both bands have forged very recognisable sonic personalities and never rest on their creative laurels. Playing alongside my brother Jem Godfrey (of Frost) at some point in the future might be fun too.

How do you view the internet and downloads? How has the internet helped get your music out there?

The internet has been nothing but good news for us. Tinyfish was born in the age of downloading and as such we have known no other environment.

We've made a concerted effort to be a net friendly band. Our music is available in many places for download (iTunes, CDBaby, etc) and being a small, mobile, intelligent unit, we survive very well.

The giant record companies are the moribund dinosaurs and bands like us are the small furry rodents who will scamper happily amongst their bones, once they are gone.

How easy/hard is it to get gigs and have you seen any upswing in interest in Tinyfish and in more general terms, the rock/progressive live music scene?

I think that booking gigs depends how creative you are willing to be. True enough, there are less places to play than there were 10 years ago but as the number of regular venues decline, I believe that you'll see more weekend or all day 'festival' shows, driven by enthusiastic fans and musicians which will combine a number of similar groups to make a gig more of an event.

As for interest in Tinyfish, yes, 2007 was very good to us. We've had a number of offers from prog labels to sign with them and had the opportunity to play alongside some fantastic acts over the past 6 months. Roll on 2008.

What other bands out there would the band members recommend and why?

Oh, top of my list right now is a band called Touchstone, we are very lucky to be playing with them on the 2nd of Feb at The Peel in London. They have some great material and are a fantastic live act.

Message for your fans...

Just a huge and happy wave of thanks. Our fans have been incredibly supportive since we arrived on the scene. Some of them have travelled from as far as the US and mainland Europe to see us play which is quite humbling, not to mention the hardcore Tinyfish fans who turn up to all our gigs, no matter where we play. They know the lyrics better than I do!

Interview © 2008 Jason Ritchie.
All rights reserved.


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