Preview: Manchester Punk Festival: Tellison


With MPF2018 just over a fortnight away, we caught up with Stephen from Tellison…

The Punk Archive: Hey guys, how’s it going?
Stephen: Very well thank you. We’ve just got back from playing our first show of the year with Fresh, Caves, ItoldyouIwouldeatyou and a bunch more down in Aldershot. From a personal standpoint I felt mostly bewildered, old and worried onstage but the actual band performance part seems to have gone down pretty well! The other bands were all excellent which always helps motivate you to play to your best and then we drove home through the snow listening to Enya.

The Punk Archive: How’s your 2018 been so far?
Stephen: Relatively quiet in the Tellison camp. We all have full-time jobs and lives away from music so we’ve largely been living those and trying to stay alive. Henry and I have started to meet up to work on some new bits and pieces for projects unknown in the future. Mostly I would describe the results as sounding like an indie rock band trying to play the Top Gun soundtrack with limited knowledge of the actual songs/artists/sound of the Top Gun soundtrack.

The Punk Archive: Are you excited to be playing MPF this year, and why?
Stephen: Definitely. We love coming up to Manchester and it’s our first time at this venue which provides a nice element of surprise. Plus our great friends Crumbs are on just before us so it’ll be a dream to see them again. We’ve been having a bit of back and forth trying to get everyone’s schedules to line up with MPF over the past few years so it’ll be good to finally be walking out on stage on the Saturday. We also don’t get to tour as much as we’d like these days so any chance to be a band and pretend for a few fleeting moments that our lives have been worthwhile is always something to be cherished.

The Punk Archive: Who else are you excited to watch on the line-up?
Stephen: I’m a big fan of Crazy Arm, Fresh and Apologies so I’d definitely head to those sets if I wasn’t playing with Tellison elsewhere those days. Also Crumbs are great and, like us, will be providing something a bit different on Saturday. When we’re asked to play Punk (or Math, Metal, Indie, etc) festivals I feel like we’re essentially there to provide a sonic sorbet, refreshing everyone’s aural palates ready for the next actual punk band.

The Punk Archive: What do you think it is about MPF which has made it so quickly one of the best festivals in the UK?
Stephen: Good old-fashioned quality line-ups and, from a performer perspective, a well-organised Fest is always a pleasure to play. The enthusiasm of the people running the Festival is also a crucial element and MPF have been nothing but a pleasure to deal with! It’s a simple formula but you’d be surprised how frequently it’s ignored.

The Punk Archive: What can fans expect from your set?
Stephen: We’ll have been out on the road for a few days by the time we get to Manchester so I’d go so far as to say people can expect a near-tour-fit version of the band Tellison sweating our way through a bunch of indie rock songs encompassing all our albums while trying not to fall over. Someone once described Idlewild as “the sound of a flight of stairs falling down a flight of stairs”, I guess we’d be something like “the sound of four Care Bears falling down a flight of stairs”

The Punk Archive: What else do you have planned for 2018?
Stephen: We’ve got some shows booked over the next few months around the UK and over in Italy and we’ll be working on new songs for a new release. We’ll also be attempting to perfect our homemade pizzas, not using Duolingo enough and staring at country cottages on Right Move and being sad.


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