There’s no doubt that Nathan James acts the part. A bear of a man with a golden mane and a taste in expensive-looking jackets, the Inglorious singer looks like he’s just about to step off a Learjet, possibly into the arms of a model, perhaps two. He’s a man who’d look at home sprawled out on an oversized sheepskin rug with both, staring comfortably down the lens, a casually discarded bottle of Moët at his side.
He means business too. Ask him what he’ll be doing in 10 years time and it’s clear confidence isn’t an issue. “On a break, probably, before doing the reunion/‘last’ tour,” he says. “And making loads of money. I have this real desire to have a farm, and when I eventually make my first million I shall be investing in a tractor, some livestock, and a plot of land somewhere in the UK countryside.”
And why shouldn’t he be confident? The band’s second album Inglorious II has producer Kevin Shirley proclaiming them to be the best British band since Led Zeppelin, and new single Hell Or High Water finds the band in fierce form, pummelling along like Deep Purple at their most combustible.
What’s Hell Or High Water about?
It’s about people standing up for themselves, saying they have had enough and I think that’s something that currently rings true with a lot of people. Times are changing and it’s a scary world out there.
I like that people are saying that they are fed up and they want change. Whether it’s right or wrong, good or bad, in 2017 people all over the world have felt the need for big changes, and I like that we live in a time where our voices can be heard… but that’s enough Geldof for one interview!
Who are your favourite singers?
Glenn Hughes, David Coverdale, Paul Rodgers, Robert Plant, Ray Gillen, Ian Gillan, Ann Wilson, Freddie, Axl, Dio etc. not necessarily in that order.
Mostly I like soulful singers that sing from the heart and have great technical ability, but I also love showmen/women and unique qualities to the voice. I like to know who it is after one word. Individuality is important to me.
I love singers with great ranges. I remember the first time I heard Glenn Hughes: I was about 14 and I honestly thought he was Stevie Wonder. I am also influenced by a lot of others singer too, from Michael Bolton to Devin Townsend.
What do you make of Kevin Shirley’s quotes about Inglorious being “the best British band since Led Zeppelin”?
Incredible. Over the last few years we have had some high praise indeed but when the guy with the ears who has probably told a lot of my heroes to “have another go at that” comments, it means so much . The text messages I was getting from Kevin during the mix were honestly so humbling, and to see him excited to mix our album was a real compliment in itself. He doesn’t seem like the type of bloke to lie about his opinion. That’s why we wanted him to mix it: he has a great attitude to mixing and we all felt very proud giving him our raw music.
Your fans have been quite vocal on social media, taking Classic Rock to task for a perceived lack of Inglorious coverage. Care to comment?
I think they found it quite frustrating that a young, British CLASSIC ROCK band inspired by all the greats were not initially given the support from a British CLASSIC ROCK magazine in an age where its increasingly harder to get a break and generally those without talent seem to be the ones celebrated… in reality for classic rock music to continue for years to come, the UK needs bands like Inglorious. The UK is the home of this music after all. I also think our fans have seen how hard we have worked in the last three years, how much we have sacrificed and they as readers and subscribers of your magazine would like to see some home grown talent featured.
We don’t have a huge major record label, loads of money, a famous rockstar dad, etc. We have a great team of hard working and dedicated believers.
I have read Classic Rock for years and I cannot express how exciting and wonderful it was to finally see my band in the magazine, thank you.
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You’ve said that Inglorious II “isn’t perfect”. What will album number three bring?
More of the same. Five guys [plus a keyboard player] in a room making real music that can be replicated live without disappointing a paying audience that deserve honesty and not be led to believe the people on the stage are better than they actually are. Music isn’t supposed to be perfect: it’s not maths, it’s art.
You’re playing London next month and have a bunch of festival dates lined up for June. What can fans expect from those dates?
The London show is being promoted by Live Nation and is our most exciting to date. We have sold a lot of tickets already. We are bringing more lights, sound, songs, experience and we are a tighter band than we were last year. Two great support bands Scottish rockers Mason Hill and female-fronted Gypsy Heart will open the evening, and it’s a week after our second album comes out, so hopefully people will have learnt the tunes and will be able to sing along to the new songs as well as the most popular ones from album one. As for the festivals we will be doing short, sharp, punchy up tempo sets so that the people who have no idea who we are leave wanting to know more about us and those that do can rock out to the tunes they know. We really do love performing, and I think anyone that comes to a show will see that.
Inglorious II is released on May 12, and can be pre-ordered from the band’s website now.