Raging Speedhorn have hit the charts with their new album, and now they want to get back to the business of playing live. Gordon Morison is the man keeping the beats in check on stage and organising the band off stage. He had a chat with Sammy Jones for Pulse Music.
It’s insane that we still get to play big festivals and have people come to see us after 20 odd years,” muses Raging Speedhorn drummer Gordon Morison, “Having people still loving it is as much as we could ever wish for, and people are fanatical – they know more about the band than I do!”
The metal sextet, originally from Northamptonshire, are still buzzing following the release of their sixth full-length release, Hard To Kill which was recorded with producer Russ Russell in Kettering’s Parlour Studios.
It’s a metal heavy attack on the senses which sees the band back at their riff-fuelled best.
The session was done and dusted prior to the pandemic but only issued late in 2020, via their own Red Weed Records label.
“People still want to hear music. We thought people needed new stuff and we could capitalise on that,” Gordon says with a laugh, “The reviews and the album sales have been great. The whole thing has been amazing.”
The problem has been taking the sounds to the stage. Covid has crushed the gig scene: “…and that’s what Speedhorn is all about – the live aspect of the band. Since we got back together seven years ago this is the longest we’ve never played.”
It’s March and the band is only just turning its attention to thoughts of a possible UK tour in December. It’s a tough realisation that live music won’t return ‘properly’ for some time, but you can’t really take in a live set from Raging Speedhorn from the comfort of a chair.
Socially distanced gigs have their place, but not with this genre.
“With our kind of music it just doesn’t feel right,” Gordon reasons.
Pre-pandemic Speedhorn have clocked up many meaty live moments in their own right, and with the likes of Slipknot and Clutch. There was a particularly memorable date at the Milton Keynes Bowl on the Ozzfest bill too – a dream for a bunch of kids peddling their hard as nails metal.
“I think we were on tour with Biohazard in Europe when our manager came off the phone and said, ‘You’re doing Ozzfest’ and we never really thought about it until we got there and then we were like, ‘Holy hell, this is a big deal, this is!’”
Gordon recounts a story of booze and high spirits followed by a little bit of drama the next morning.
“It got a bit chaotic. I remember our manager waking us up saying, ‘You’re on stage in 10 minutes!’ and ‘Where’s Darren?’ Our bassist hadn’t come back because he had fallen in a ditch and passed out. Someone had to give him some shoes to go on stage with. And then we just got on and did it.
“It was really weird; we went from doing nothing to getting one decent tour and then it all blew up out of nowhere.
“It took us by complete surprise really and it was the best time.”
The Speedhorn of 2021 is still a raging 12-legged beast, but line-up changes have given the band a new spark: “Definitely,” Gordon says, “It just feels like everyone wants to be in the band, and everyone gets a say and we all listen to each other. That’s just how it is.
“Our arrogance has definitely calmed down a bit too – people change and you can’t be an idiot all the time!
“Me and Frank (RS co-founding frontman) laugh about things these days and say, ‘How have we got to this point of having a nice house and stuff?’ because we didn’t care about that.
“You change a bit, but we’re still the same council estate nutters!”
And when Speedhorn does hit the road again it’ll be business as usual: “Us having a laugh and getting drunk,” Gordon promises, “But we’re a bit more controlled, because we want to be good!
“It’s always been fun, but it’s better now because everyone wants to go on tour, everyone wants to do as many shows as we can.
“We just want to have a good time and do this for as long as we possibly can…”