We had the opportunity to chat with the English pop-punk band Sharper Side, who recently unveiled their new single “Hurts Like Hell”. Learn more about the inspiration behind this song, as well as the band’s upcoming projects in the following interview!
Hello Sharper Side. Thanks for your time! Would you mind introducing your band to our readers?
Hey everyone, thanks for taking the time to read about us. We are a 3-piece pop-punk band from North London & Hertfordshire. The band was formed in 2021 with the current line-up created in Aug 2022 when Laurence Moore (Drums) joined. With Laurence we also have Chris Treasure – Guitar & Lead Vocals and Ben Zwaig – Bass & Backing Vocals.
We draw influences from the late nineties, early 2000’s pop-punk era with the likes of bands such as Green Day, Sum-41 and Wheatus. This, mixed in with rock styles of Foo Fighters and emo sounds from My Chemical Romance give us an energetic, zestful sound with angst-heavy themes, killer hooks and melodic rhythm. We are well known for putting on awesome live shows which engage our fans and always leave them wanting more.
How would you describe the punk rock scene in Herts, UK?
It’s surprisingly strong for a quiet & quaint county in the UK! We have a lots of great live music venues in Hertfordshire that like to put on all different genres, but there is a particular following for the pop-punk / punk rock scene.
You have recently revealed your new single, “Hurts Like Hell”, on major streaming platforms. Can you dig into the themes and inspirations behind this song?
Hurts Like Hell opens with high energy from the very first second, with a crunchy guitar riff on top of blasted drums to draw the listener into the intense spirit of the song. The track’s core is a simple, catchy chorus that sums up its meaning – having hope hurts, but we’re okay with it.
You mentioned that “having hope hurts, but we’re okay with it”. Please explain how your personal experiences influenced the songwriting process of this single.
The inspiration around the song actually comes from following England (or other teams) at football tournaments! Supporting England generally means going to penalties which historically we have known to be less than great at… So supporting any team requires that hope, and sometimes that hope can lead to greatness, but other times it puts us through pain as we our emotions are played with by the sport that we love.
You’ll be back in the studio in a few weeks to work on your EP. What kind of songs can we expect?
That’s right. We are planning to record a few songs. One of them is a classic early Green Day style – think “Basket Case” from their Dookie album. The others are similar vain to Four Thousand Club (the single we released in May 2023) which gives the listener a chance to move around but with powerful rhythms which give the songs a driving feeling. We are really excited to record them and put them out there for our fans.
You’re often playing live shows. What’s the thing you love the most about playing in front of your fans?
I think it’s different for all of us. I know for Laurence he loves it when the audience participate (clap) to the beat. For Chris it’s when the crowd are up close and you can feel their energy. For Ben, well he just like’s it when they turn up.. haha. Seriously though, Ben likes a crowd when they are giving their all. All 3 of us enjoy the feedback energy which makes us want to play harder and give more into it. You’ll always see Laurence coming off in sweat. Or is that because he’s unfit! (Don’t write that haha).
Speaking of live shows. What’s on your merch table and, as a band and music fans, what’s your favorite merch item?
We have 3 tee-shirts at the moment. One is the Four Thousand Club artwork with the woman walking off stage with money thrown in the air, the other is the Back 2 Bite You artwork with two dogs playing and the 3rd was a gimmick but it’s really popular! The 3rd tee is a wizard and dinosaur fight to the end.
Our favourite is the Four Thousand Club one as we are really pleased with the artwork. We will have some more merch coming soon though, think Sharper Side socks, hoodies, bracelets with logo and some new artwork. We love it when we see our fans at gigs in our merch or even out in public. If you are a Sharper Side fan, tag yourself in a selfie and share to our insta. We love our fans!
The last words are for you – Thank you for your time!
Thanks again for all the support and doing this interview with us. We love making music and love sharing it with current fans and finding new people that want to dip their toe into the alt-rock / pop-punk scene. Our sound is a real throwback to our childhoods of the nineties and we hope our listeners feel that nostalgic tone and want to get up and dance and move around to awesome music.
Apart from the EP recording, we have 3 more gigs booked in for this year, starting with our headline slot at The Finsbury, London on Sat 23rd Sept. Followed by 17th October at the The Star in Shoreditch London and finally Saturday 18th November at The Beehive, London. We realise these are all in London… so we’d love to come over to the continent in the new year and play some music for your readers. Please get in touch if you know anywhere that would like us. Best way to contact is via our Instagram @sharpersideband.
Cheers, Sharper Side.