SXSW 2017 Interview: Mez Green and Mick Sanders of LIFE

By on Thursday, 23rd March 2017 at 11:00 am

From all appearances, coming out to Austin for SXSW 2017 was pretty much a dream come true – not to mention an unmatchable, priceless professional opportunity – for punk band LIFE. The group from Hull were already well known for their punishing, unrelenting, high octane live shows even before they made it to our shores, had Lady Luck smiling on them, having the benefits of two prominent performances at the British Music Embassy at Latitude 30 during their week at the festival. They were given the honour of closing out the festivities at the Embassy Saturday night at the showcase sponsored by the BBC in cooperation with the UK’s Department of International Trade (formerly known as UK Trade and Investment). However, they began their onslaught on the largely unsuspecting American public on Thursday afternoon at Latitude 30, performing alongside four other acts from Northern England and Wales specialising in rock of varying degrees of heaviness.

As should probably be expected from a pair of brothers from the North, Mez Green (lead vocals / third from left on the photo at top) and Mick Sanders (vocals, guitar / far left) are two Yorkshire lads who really don’t give a monkey’s about offending anyone with their personal views. I should qualify this statement. While I have been a pretty much diehard hard rock fan since I was a kid (blame my having an older brother who reared me on Led Zeppelin and Megadeth), I have never related well to punk. I never felt a personal connection to it. That is, until I came across LIFE in my previewing of the UK bands coming out to SXSW this year. They care about the music they make and the messages they are projecting through their music, including standing up for the disenfranchised, the marginalised in a world that is becoming more looney tunes and unbelievable as time goes on.

Thanks to a Momentum grant from PRS for Music Foundation, they were able to record their debut album ‘Popular Music’, which is set for release in May. In this interview that took place late Thursday afternoon last week, Mez and Mick tell me about their hometown of Hull (UK City of Culture in 2017, no less), where their name came from and why all the capital letters (let’s face it, you wanted to know, didn’t you?) and yes, why they feel it’s necessary to inject politics into their music. Listen to the interview below. For more coverage of LIFE on TGTF, which will be added to as we add on our live reviews from Austin, go here.

Mez Green and Mick Sanders of LIFE, British Music Embassy, Latitude 30, Thursday 16 March 2017

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