Bloodstock 2019 – Band Feature/Interview: Gaia

Bloodstock Open Air 2019 is nearly upon us and to say we’re excited is an understatement. We adore the festival and this year’s line-up is simply phenomenal. From the Ronnie James Dio Main Stage to the Sophie Lancaster Stage to the New Blood and Jägermeister Stages, there is something for everyone! Not got your tickets yet!? What are you waiting for!? Head over to the Bloodstock Festival website here and join thousands of like-minded head-bangers for a weekend of quality rock and metal.

Gaia are a progressive metal band from Brighton in the UK made up of Jack Woodward on vocals, Jamie Clark and Olly Rybarczuk on guitar, Nick Tappenden on bass and Jack Lowe on drums.

They earned their place at Bloodstock 2019 by winning the Brighton leg of the Metal 2 the Masses competition. Their debut single, Words will be released soon.

They will be playing the New Blood Stage on Friday the 9th August 2019.


1. Congratulations on winning the Brighton leg of the M2TM and earning your slot on the Bloodstock New Blood Stage. What made you decide to take part?

Thank you! We love to gig in general, and a gig with the chance of winning something as special as playing at Bloodstock is something that caught our eye straight away. The Green Door Store is a great venue to play and it’s also great as a meeting place for the local metal scene, so we knew that the Brighton M2TM would be a great opportunity to meet other local bands in our scene, as well as industry professionals who specialise in metal to get advice on how to make progress in the industry.

2. What were some of the highlights of your competition run?

It was amazing meeting all the bands and realising the quality of the metal scene in the UK at the moment, especially Exhumation as they were incredibly nice and gave us great advise for our live set, and meeting Simon Hall at the final heat who was also really supportive of our music and us as a band. There are so many awesome bands that we did not know about and going all the way in this competition means that we got to see so many incredible performances. A huge highlight for us as well was being able to play with Enslavement again. Those guys don’t fail to provide an awesome show and some insane mosh pits.

3. Describe the feeling if you can upon hearing your name read out as the winners?

Just pure excitement and relief! We have all worked so hard as a band over the past year to get our set and our performance to where it is today, and to be able to win a competition like the Brighton M2TM really showed us how far we’ve come since the beginning. We can imagine how tough it must have been for the judges to decide as the bar was set so high by the other bands that played, so to pull through as winners was so amazing.

4. How big of an opportunity is playing the New Blood Stage for GAIA? We’ve seen some bands really grow from it over the years!

It’s a huge opportunity! Due to the fortunate timing of the progress of our EP the people at Bloodstock will be some of the first to hear our new music live, so this is absolutely the best opportunity we have for taking GAIA on the right path. The New Blood Stage is a great chance for bands to kick on after M2TM and we’re keen to make the most of this opportunity and see where it will take us as we follow in the footsteps of some of the great bands before us.

5. What can Bloodstockers expect from you come festival time? Why should they come see you?

They should expect everything from hard hitting riffs, sweet melodic phrases, technical complexity, cheeky banter and all round good times. We aim to please people as much between songs as we do during them, so hopefully our performance will be one to remember!

6. Are you regular attendees to the festival or will this be your first time?

This will be our first time at Bloodstock but that won’t hold us back, we will most certainly be giving it the beans. We’re really excited to be on both sides of the festival, to not only be able to play but to also see a ton of bands that we’re fans of all in the same place at the same time, it’s going to be awesome!

7. Are you hanging about all weekend? If so who are you most looking forward to seeing?

Oh absolutely! We’ll be camping the weekend and getting down on it. We’re especially looking forward to seeing Tesseract as we’ve been huge fans of theirs for years and they’re a huge inspiration on our sound, as well as Sabaton, Soulfly, Parkway Drive, Thy Art Is Murder and Harbinger to name a few. We could go on for ages because this year’s lineup is so sick and we’re excited to hear how all of the bands will sound live.

8. What does the rest of 2019 look like for GAIA? Shows? Releases?

We have a five track EP coming out very soon, from which will be releasing 2 singles and at least 1 music video. We’re also working on a ton of songs ready for our next release which will be out in 2020. As far as shows go, we would like to push on and perform as much as we can, especially in venues outside of Brighton such as in London and further up north to spread the word about GAIA, so we will be organising our first tour very soon. We cannot wait!


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