Nevermind The Warp’d Tour Festival 2016 Interview Series – Mark, Blindspot


Ragged Press editor Matt Gleeson caught up with Mark Gregson, guitarist with Western Australian beer and burp fueled punks Blindspot, in the lead up to the Nevermind The Warp’d Tour Festival.

MG: Thanks for taking our call Mark.  I guess the first question I’ve got is, I haven’t seen you guys live before, what can Melbourne audiences expect from a Blindspot set?

Mark: It’s depending what time of the day we’re on.  You’re either going to get really bad jokes and just fun, happy punk rock, or if it’s during the day, it will be tight, happy punk rock with bad jokes, but not as bad.

MG: And have you guys played Melbourne before?

Mark: We have once previously, but we were sort of in and out.  I don’t know what happened with it, we didn’t get many people there at all.  I think there was heaps of gigs on that night or something.

MG:  Yeah Melbourne can be difficult that way, because there are a number of venues.  It’s quite often difficult for me as a photographer, like I’ll have 3 or 4 shows to pick from on a Friday or Saturday night, and it can get a bit hard.

Mark: But yeah it was cool, because we played with Drexler that night and met Craig, and not too long after that he hit us up to come over to Perth and we put on a run of shows for them.  So it was good to get to know some of the bands over there (Melbourne).  It was more socialising than playing that night.

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MG: I think you’ll get a bit of that with Nevermind The Warp’d too.  It’s a very, very social event, with thirty bands on and quite often you’ll get… well it’s a big event, so you get to meet heaps and heaps of people.  So this might be a bit of a moot question now, but do you have any favourite Melbourne bands?

Mark:  Yeah, we’ve got a couple.  The first time we went over we didn’t know any, apart from H’s who had broken up, and then Pitt The Elder, which came out of them, so that was pretty much the only band we knew.  They’re one of our favourites.  We’ve had them come over to Perth and play our launch…

MG: Yatesy is a lot of good fun…

Mark:  Yeah, yeah, they’re great.  They are all great blokes and women.  Yeah we’re definitely into Bombs Are Falling and Postscript and Wolfpack.  They’re about the only ones that I really know… and Drexler as well.  Can’t forget them.

MG:  None of which are playing Nevermind The Warp’d this year (editor’s note – because I’m a dickhead I forgot that Wolfpack are actually playing Nevermind the Warp’d this year!). 

Mark:  Well that’s why we are really excited about coming to play though, because we are not really too familiar with the Melbourne punk scene, where as we are a bit more familiar with the Sydney one and the… well not even Adelaide… we’ve only be over there once.  It’s finally good to get over there (Melbourne) for a proper weekend and meet some new people.

MG:  Well I think there will be a few people looking forward to catching your set.  While we are on the topic of favourites though, you guys have played support for some pretty big names internationally.  What’s your best memory of playing support for an international act?

Mark: Well for mine, well actually for most of the boys, the best one for us was definitely Millencolin, because as a band that’s the common one that we’ve all got as one of our favourite bands and they were the nicest blokes. It was more surreal getting to meet them and hang out with them.  Same as when we played with Pennywise… I don’t know, it didn’t even seem like it was real that we end up playing with the bands that we loved as kids.

MG:  Was that the Pennywise/Anti-Flag tour last year?

Mark: It was yeah.  The Anti-Flag guys were just as nice.  They were really nice actually.

MG: I was lucky enough to shoot the Pennywise/Anti-Flag show… well I was shooting Bombs Are Falling there, at the Melbourne leg and met all of those guys.  They were fantastic.

Mark: Argh they were great blokes.  I love Anti-Flag as well, so getting to play with Pennywise sort of ghosted the fact that we were actually playing with Anti-Flag as well, til the night came along and then it was like, ‘Holy shit’!

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MG: A bit nervous were you?

Mark: Aw yeah, because at the time there were some issues with Anti-Flag’s guitars as well and we didn’t get to sound check until 5 minutes before doors opened.  So they pushed the doors back 15 minutes, we were standing there waiting and waiting and waiting and then the nerves started to build up.

MG:  You guys have just announced a release of a split with The Bob Gordons.  Tell us about the recording.

Mark:  We recorded with our… well one of our mates is in a band in Perth called Castle Bravo which are a great band if you haven’t hear of them, definitely worth checking out, Todd, and he had a little home studio.  So a couple of years ago we went in to just demo and the demo turned out really good and we were like we’ll make this an E.P., so we went and recorded with him again and this time The Bob Gordons went in and tracked with him as well, so that we had a similar type recording.  He goes under the moniker Wail Records.  You might hear a bit more of him over the next couple of years.  There’s quite a few Perth bands now going in there to record with him, which is good.

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MG: What’s the Perth scene like?

Mark:  It’s very close.  I think it would probably be similar to Melbourne once we get over there and meet people, but yeah there’s so many untapped bands here, because it’s so far to travel to tour.  The quality is just so good.

MG: I came over earlier this year with Strawberry Fist Cake (as photographer and driver).  It was my first time over, and I caught The Bob Gordons and whole bunch of other bands.  We did three nights, Bunbury, Margaret River and the Rosemount in Perth. It was amazing to see such incredible bands, especially out in the rural areas like Margaret River and Bunbury.

Mark: Bunbury is ridiculous!  It’s ridiculous just how many good bands are in that little part of Australia.  It’s insane.

MG: Coming back to the recording.  How many tracks over all on the recording?

Mark: Only one each on this, because we only just released our latest E.P. in July, so we hadn’t actually planned on recording anything else, but we were playing with The Bob Gordons and I think we had four weekends…  four shows in a row we played with them, and were like let’s just do a split while we go over there with a new track, something extra to put out there and a bit more exciting.

MG: Cool, and obviously you’re bringing copies over for Nevermind the Warp’d …

Mark: Yeah, you guys will be the first ones to actually get a chance to get your hands on it.

MG: A Nevermind the Warp’d exclusive!

Mark: Yeah pretty much.  No one will be able to get them in Perth until we get back.

MG: and what format are they on mate? Are they on vinyl or…

Mark: Originally the talk was we were going to do a double A side on vinyl, but the costs were going to be a bit too high, so it’s just going to be on a CD.

MG: One final question.  What’s the nicest thing that the Nevermind The Warp’d audience can do for Blindspot while your over here?

Mark: ha ha. Definitely buy us a beer that’s for sure.

Matt: How’d I know you were going to say that?

Mark: I think you might get that response from pretty much everyone, but yeah buy us a beer or a CD.  That would definitely help us out.

Matt: Look thanks very, very much for your time Mark.   I look forward to catching your set at Nevermind The Warp’d and I’ll definitely be getting my hands on a copy of the split release.

You can catch Blindspot at:

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