Here at RGM Introducing we love nothing better than meeting and getting to know new bands, here is our interview with Idealistics. Invest!
Hi guys tell us about the band and how you all got together?
Idealistics consists of Ali (bass and vocals, George (guitar and vocals) and Dom (drums). Unfortunately, Dom is in the middle of uni exams and hasn’t been able to take part in this interview.
Ali: I was part of a Manic Street Preachers forum and a friend of mine thought I ought to talk to a guy (George) on there who was about my age and did loads of guitar covers. So I stalked George on Facebook and Dom leant over and sent him a friend request which absolutely terrified me.
George: I received the friend request and my first thought was that it was one of those bots. Ali didn’t have any photos of herself, it all just looked a bit dodgy. I accepted, however, and sent her a message saying ‘do I know you?’… And that’s where the magic began.
Ali joined up with me writing songs, she’d send me lyrics and I’d come up with the melody, then I’d give her a bass part to learn. After a long period of trial and error with other drummers we eventually realised that Ali’s sister (Dom) – who already felt like a third band member – should just pick up sticks and learn drums. That was when it properly clicked. The three of us really understood each other musically.
Which band member is the biggest pain in the arse? And Why?
Ali: All of us would probably answer differently but I think if we drew up a proper table of who is the biggest pain in the arse the most it would be George. You have to babysit him all the time.
George: But then, where would they be without me?
Ali, talk me through some of the health challenges you have and how you manage this being in the band?
Ali: I’ve got a rare form of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome so I have different symptoms to the most common type (hypermobile EDS) which makes a lot of sense because doctors were confused for ages as to why I had so many other symptoms and conditions that they wouldn’t typically see.
Anyways, my connective tissues are too elastic so I’ll try to keep it short and say that my joints are incredibly flexible and loose which leads to daily subluxations and dislocations, my skin is very fragile, I have loads of vascular issues, I get a lot of internal damages such as tears and I’ve got quite a few related conditions. One is to do with my autonomic nervous system and my heart and I’ve also got a vascular compression on my digestive system and one of my important veins which means I haven’t eaten for a year and a half now. The surgery they offered is too risky due to my vascular complications so I’m fed by a tube via my heart.
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
Ali: I can’t really think of a particular time, it is just always amazing to be up on stage. I guess when you have an amazing crowd and everyone is singing the lyrics back to you is a highlight for me.
George: we played this acoustic gig recently in this little cafe/bar in Cambridge called Relevant Records and the place was packed. Along with our own stuff, we did a bunch of covers to get people singing along and at one point we got a couple of people up from the crowd and got them to sing with us. That was great fun. They had travelled over from Kent so they had a long journey home that night, we wanted to make sure they had a good night!
What was the worst experience on stage?
Ali: When a joint pops out, I always find it awkward because the audience don’t always know what to do, I tend to make a joke out of it and carry on.
George: When I attempted to change to standard D tuning between songs in a rush and was just completely out of tune for the whole song. It probably sounded worse in my head but that was definitely a mistake. Maybe one day I’ll be able to afford a second guitar.
What drives you as a band?
George: A passion for creating music that aims to make a difference to someone’s life, no matter how small. That and the knowledge that I don’t know how to do anything else other than work in music, so I’ve got to hope we can make it work.
Ali: I’ve always loved music and found it to be an outlet for me. Then when I started writing lyrics I found that to be therapeutic so I always wanted to have a way of performing them. That and the knowledge that so few disabled artists are given a fair chance in the industry. It has become very important for me to advocate in the music industry for people with chronic conditions and disabilities.
If you could go back to the very moment you learnt your instruments, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
George: Cliché, but just practise the stuff you can’t do, not the stuff you can do. Otherwise, you can get stuck in a comfortable groove and never really progress. There are always new things to learn and new directions to push yourself in, just stick with it and it’ll make the most difference in the long run.
Ali: Pick up bass and practise as much as you practised vocals to avoid sloppy moments.
Right now, what’s pissing you off the most?
Ali: I could write out an essay for this one. Well, the treatment of minorities in society, the government, too many to single out one.
George: Lots of things piss Ali off daily. Mostly things I do. I like to think I’m the calm, level-headed one who keeps us afloat. I’m not sure the others agree with that statement.
Tell me about your last single and how it came about?
Ali: I wrote the lyrics for Scandalous after I saw Millie Bobby Brown get listed as ‘One of the sexiest women in Hollywood’ or something and she was only 13. I know it isn’t just her that gets sexualised and it is awful. I then sent George a horrific demo of me doing just the chorus that I came up with and it was literally just a rough vocal tune. I had been listening to Beautifully Unconventional by Wolf Alice a lot so it was influenced by that song. Then George added verses and music and fixed everything together.
George: I knew it needed to have a slight tongue-in-cheek vibe to it, there was something sassy and antagonistic to the lyrics and I tried to make the music reflect that. This song was in the pipeline for a while, we wanted to wait for the right moment to bring it out and I think our new EP ‘The Rain in Our Eyes’ needed a song like this.
You look like you are working hard on the bands brand, your socials are slick, you engage with your fans, how important is it to you to build on this?
Ali: I think it is important to build a good relationship with fans, without them you wouldn’t be able to continue making music.
Tell us a funny story from a previous tour/gig ? A mad one.
George: Because the three of us are so close we are always messing around and bullying each other. Ali has a skill of finding bloody massive dead spiders and tormenting us with them.
Ali: But I’ll never hurt a live spider. They’re great creatures.
Your new tour looks like it’s shaping up nicely, what will we expect to see?
Ali: New songs, new outfits and we actually decided to go to small venues so it’ll be high energy but nice and intimate. That way we can hopefully have more interaction with people! At the last gig we got people to come up and sing, I absolutely love doing that.
Many thanks for joining us Ali and George, send our thoughts to Dom and hope he smashes those exams 🙂