Black Futures Discuss: The Boileroom & UK Live Music

black futuresWith Guildford venue the Boileroom facing the possibility of closure, TMMP caught up with Stu Henshall of future-punk outfit Black Futures to discuss the Boileroom and the state of the UK’s live music scene.

This interview is part of a larger TMMP feature which can be read in full here.

What is your general opinion of the Boileroom?

The Boileroom has put Guildford on the map by being the only venue in the area where you can see touring acts in an intimate, safe, and professional environment that otherwise you’d be schlepping up to London to and paying through the nose for privilege. Not only that but massively community conscious. As a Guildford resident I have also seen them put on various fairs and all age events. Plus the noodles are awesome.

How did you feel when you heard about the Boileroom’s current problems?

We were gutted and are totally there for them. The Boileroom has supported us from day dot and on all of the times we have been there to play or as punters they have always been militant in their control of noise leakage. You can’t load out until the end of the night, the double doors can only be opened one at a time, and they ensure people are quiet as they leave the venue. They go above and beyond so we find it hard that anyone could take issue with them.

What would happen if the Boileroom were to shut down? What impact would that event have?

Without the Boileroom, Guildford would sink back into the cultural mud only to bubble with offerings of entertainment for the middle aged, middle of the road affluent proportion of its population. The rest of us would be forced to leave the area to see live music. How can that be progress for the town? Also, the local music college regularly holds nights for the next generation of bands to cut their teeth in a professional environment, and the Boileroom also hosts meditation events and various other non-music-orientated events.  It would suck massively.

What is your favourite Boileroom-related memory?

I can safely say several of my top ten shows have been there. The staff are appreciative of the artists, and the punters are appreciative of the place for bringing these acts they wouldn’t normally get to see – so it makes you as a performer push harder. Always makes for a wicked show.

How do you feel about the state of the UK’s live music scene right now? What could be done to improve things?

Noise control and license restrictions are doing nothing to perpetuate an environment where the arts can flourish. Support your local venues. If they are given a hard time, make it known that you care and email your council. Otherwise, close your eyes, turn on Capital FM, and wait for live music to die. It won’t be long unless you stand up.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Black Futures will be celebrating the end of this situation with a gig at the Boileroom on the 25th September. Come and show you want to Keep Music Alive!


Black Futures on Facebook and Twitter.

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Posted on 10 September 2014

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