EMQ’s with 40,000 LEAGUES
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Greater Manchester, UK based Metal band 40,000 Leagues. Huge thanks to them for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
Hello there, we are 40,000 Leagues. We are a Manchester based metal band that consists of Nathan ‘Nips’ Crossdale on vocals, Joe Leonard on lead guitar, Rick Wiltshire on bass, Paul Beesley on drums and Harry Hulme on rhythm guitar and backing vocals.
40,000 Leagues started in late 2016 in the back room of our former guitarist Andy Davidson’s house, in Macclesfield. Nips and Andy would jam songs together, covering bands such as Alter Bridge, Atreyu, Metallica and many more. From there, Nips brought in Paul – as they had been in a band together previously during their teenage years. Rick joined the band soon afterwards, as he had been looking for a band to join for a while. Finally, Andy revealed the secret weapon, which was Joe. Thus 40,000 Leagues was born!
In January 2019 Andy departed the band, and Harry boldly stepped in!
How did you come up with your band name?
After trialling several names – none of which we liked – we spent an entire band practice trying to come up with a name based off classical literature or film. After what seemed like hours; Nathan suggested 40,000 Leagues – as he had recently watched 20,000 leagues under the sea. Paul then jokingly suggested that our mascot could be a scuba-diving lobster; though we all thought he said hamster. This bizarrely had us in stitches and so we decided to stick with the name – though we never did go for the mascot idea!
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
We are from Manchester (though Joe is from Macclesfield) and while this might sound biased; we do believe that Manchester has the best metal scene in the country! We are thrilled to be part of the 0161 underground metal community and have played with many great bands also from the local area.
All the bands, promoters and fans are part of the community and it feels like one big happy metal family!
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
Our latest single is a cover of ‘Chaka Khan and Rufus – Ain’t Nobody’; for anyone who enjoys a cheesy 80s classic in a metal style.
Who have been your greatest influences?
Nips: My big influences are Avenged Sevenfold; I don’t think I would have started making music if it were not for them! Pantera are up there too; as the first time I heard ‘Cemetery Gates’, I was in awe! Sylosis too, as when I first started in a band ‘Conclusion of an Age’ definitely played a huge part in my song-writing and vocals! Last but not least it has to be Alter Bridge, the vocal ability of Myles Kennedy should be illegal, and I can only hope to one day be half as good as he is!
Paul: I personally really enjoy a lot of different genres and styles of music but would say I’m on the heavy scale of metal.
Harry: Pantera and AC/DC.
Joe: Dream Theater, Metallica, Trivium, Avenged Sevenfold, Opeth, Porcupine Tree.
Rick: I grew up listening to my dad’s rock and metal collection; so bands like Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Dio, Saxon and Rainbow have perhaps had the biggest impact upon my musical tastes and stylings!
What first got you into music?
Paul: Always been into music as long as I can remember but my younger brother was actually the one that got me into rock music to begin with and then he started listening to dubstep funny how life works isn’t it?
Harry: Guitar Hero.
Rick: My family got me my first acoustic guitar at 10 years old; and I vividly remember trying to learn ‘Smoke on the Water’ on it; I was definitely playing it wrong, but from there I have always wanted to play music and be part of a band.
Joe: My friends did it, so I decided to.
Nips: I first got into music when my Mum used to take me to karaoke as a kid! 8-year-old Nips belting out ‘When you’re looking like that’ by Westlife was something to witness I assure you. 25-year-old Nips still does that.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
Harry: Lamb of God.
Joe: Big JP.
Rick: Avantasia hands down! Tobias Sammet is a musical genius!
Nips: The list of people I would like to collaborate with is endless! Obviously, I would love to collaborate with Avenged Sevenfold; but I would most definitely pass out! I would also love to collaborate with MGK! He’s another big influence of mine.
Paul: Taylor Swift.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
Nips: I would absolutely love to play Download and I know I’m definitely not alone on that one! I also would love to play Bloodstock!
Harry: Download, it’s a haven for both present and new bands.
Joe: Download – the one I have been to and everyone is always nice.
Paul: Wacken Open Air 100%!
Rick: I would love to play Wacken Open Air as well; I love power metal and folk metal, and that is their home turf.
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Nips: In terms of weird gifts we have not actually received anything weird that I can remember!
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Harry: Keep supporting unsigned bands!
Paul: Stop giving a F*** about what people think of you or what you do.
Nips: To the fans, we all cannot thank you enough for the undying support you are truly the most loyal fans and friends! You make us feel like we’re really doing something good here, and none of what we are doing could happen without any of you! We love you and thank you!
Joe: Could do with a higher setting considering the weather we are currently having.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
Nips: I cannot give one answer for this one; so, I have to go with two! I would definitely bring back Dimebag Darrell; he was taken far too soon and had the filthiest riffs! I would also bring back Freddie Mercury; another one taken far too soon and there will never be another like him.
Rick: A tough question as there are so many who I would want to see live; but I think I also would have to go with Dio!
Paul: Mitch Lucker from Suicide Silence.
Harry: Dimebag Darrell.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
Harry: You can always learn something new, no matter how long you’ve been playing. I hate the struggle to learn new rhythms but in the end it is rewarding.
Nips: I’ve been in bands since the age of 15 and from the moment I screamed out the first lines of ‘Unholy Confessions’ at my first ever band practice I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life and music is it. I absolutely love the feeling I get on stage I can’t put it into words I’m just free. The one thing I hate is how much water I have on gig days.
Joe: Being creative. Everything else.
Paul: I just love music and the energy you get when you’re performing; nothing even comes close to that feeling, and the adrenaline is unreal! I could be buzzing for 2-3 days off one amazing show, then I need to get that buzz again.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Joe: Allow artists to have more control over their music, reducing the need for high volumes of merchandise sales to keep going.
Rick: The way it is treated as a business venture by so many record labels and managers. In my eyes the excitement and joy that music brings should be front and centre, rather than how much money can be made from it for a small percentage of people.
Harry: More independent labels and a cap on how many labels a corporation can own.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Paul: Mudvayne – “Lost And Found”. I’m pretty sure it was the first ever metal album I bought.
Rick: Meatloaf – “Bat Out Of Hell”.
Joe: Dream Theater – “Scenes From A Memory”.
Nips: Jeff Wayne’s War Of The Worlds… is that allowed? (Absolutely Yes! Superb Album – Rick)
Harry: AC/DC – “If You Want Blood You’ve Got It”.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
Nips: You can’t beat a classic vinyl!
Rick: I listen to a lot of CD’s while I’m driving; I find it ensures I listen to whole albums rather than just the same few songs on repeat.
Paul: Right now, downloads but I can appreciate all.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
Paul: M2TM at the Bread Shed in January 2020.
Nips: The best gig for me would have to be Badgerfest 2019! We opened the weekend and the pressure was immense, but we gave it our all! The crowd were ready, they gave us everything! The event was run so smoothly, it was just perfect! Thanks again Badger!
Harry: Badgerfest 2019.
Joe: Manchester M2TM Final 2019.
Rick: I would also say the Manchester M2TM final 2019; playing to our biggest crowd yet was simply sublime!
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
Rick: Well I have wanted to be an actor for almost as long as I have wanted to be a musician; so hopefully that!
Paul: Hopefully, actually making some money to live.
Nips: Well I work at Tesco currently so if I wasn’t a musician, I would most probably be the greatest meal deal salesman.
Joe: Much of the same but with a notable lack of stress.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
Nips: Ooh a dinner party! M Shadows, Myles Kennedy, Ewan McGregor – in Obi Wan Kenobi attire, Jason Momoa and Chris Hemsworth (partly because my girlfriend loves him, but mostly because I want to be him).
Harry: Gandalf, Michael Starr, Thor, Tony Stark and Luke Skywalker.
Joe: Big JP, Large JP, JP, the Petrooch, Giant JP.
Rick: For me it would have to be Christopher Lee, Andrew WK, Ritchie Blackmore, Stan Lee and Richard Kiel (who played Jaws in the James Bond films). Ooh I forgot Tobias Sammet, can I have him there too?
What’s next for the band?
We had a lot of gigs planned for this year; though sadly with the current world pandemic, they have been postponed or cancelled. Currently we’re all at home writing for our next release.
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
We are quite active on social media with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter! Our music is available on YouTube, Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music, Bandcamp and many more!
Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?
Joe: It’s a cake and anyone who says it’s a biscuit needs to sort themselves out.
Harry: Cakes go hard when they are stale, biscuits go soft.
Nips: Jaffa cakes! I think they are so nice they can tell me whatever they want, and I will believe them.
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Thank you for the interview and for anyone who hasn’t yet checked out our music, make sure you do!
Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this interview, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.