Over the past year, a topic of discussion at Guildford County School is it’s very own pop-rock band called “Feels Like Catharsis”, which includes 6 incredibly musically talented students from years 10 and 11. As they rise to fame with their recent win at the Battle of the Bands in February, and upcoming performance at Guilfest on the 30Th of June, we got the chance to interview Noah (Bass guitar), Leah and Avilee (Vocals), Jason (Guitar), Jamie (Keyboard) and Hayden (Drums) about their exciting experience.

Correspondent: Starting from the beginning, when and how was your group formed?

Jamie: It started with an old Year 11 band that I joined, but unfortunately, they broke apart. We tried to reform it last year, and it took a bit of time since Mr. Fleetwood, our music teacher, had to piece together the group from different people from our year. Later, we needed another singer, and so Avilee joined this year, quite spontaneously: we weren’t even planning on inviting her to rehearsals! 

 Correspondent: How do your rehearsals go?

Jason: Setting up takes quite a bit of time, then we run through a few songs, mess around, of course, see what sounds good and what we need to focus on. Recently our rehearsals have been a bit more chaotic, because of our GCSEs and Guilfest coming up. 

Leah: Mostly we ask Hayden, our drummer, to “do something cool”, and then go from there as guidance. 

 Correspondent: Do you guys remember your first song together?

Noah: The first song we practiced with our music teacher was “Waterloo” by ABBA, which helped us understand that that wasn’t really the genre we wanted to go for. We performed “Take me out” by Franz Ferdinand during a lunch event at charity week at school, and it became one of our favourites quite quickly. Once Avilee joined, we performed “Say it ain’t so” by Weezer for a winter concert late last year.

Correspondent: Have any of you written your own music? 

Jamie and Leah: We both write our own music; I (Leah) write lyrics and was able to collaborate with Jamie who played some chords. We definitely need each other, since my bandmates have much better music theory knowledge than me, so sometimes we get the whole band to work on the ideas that we come up with. Right now we were actually planning to record one of our originals!

Correspondent: How do you decide which music you’re going to play for concerts and performances?

Avilee: It’s an extremely tough decision, just because all of our tastes are so different. Leah listens to metal, Noah likes pop-punk, Jamie’s is just all over the place, Avilee does musical theatre and Jason likes classical. It’s a lot. Plus, we need to play song that aren’t too difficult, we switch out lyrics if Mr Fleetwood finds them inappropriate, too. 

Correspondent: I know you guys are performing at Guilfest. what are your thoughts about it?

Leah: I think we’re all extremely excited and nervous at the same time, since this is such a big opportunity, and there’s going to be hundreds of people, since we’re performing on the bigger day and bigger stage! Its definitely the biggest event were going to attend, so were working extra hard to prepare.

Make sure to check out Feels Like Catharsis @feelslikecatharsis.band on Instagram and at Guilfest on June 30th!