Cannock's Piston release latest single
Cannock rockers Piston have been far from idle during lockdown, despite the disappointment of cancelled concerts.
The five-piece – Rob Angelico, Jack Edwards, Luke Allatt, Brad Newlands and Stuart Egan – were on the crest of a wave when the coronavirus pandemic hit, receiving critical and fan acclaim before Christmas when they released their cover of Black Country legends Slade's Mama Weer All Crazee Now.
And after the handful of support slots with The Cult – plus backing up Phil Campbell at KK's Steel Mill in Wolverhampton – and touring with Cannock-born rock icon Glenn Hughes, 2020 was looking good.
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But then Covid-19 hit. Their plans to support Ugly Kid Joe and headliners Thunder at Birmingham’s NEC was the first concert to fall by the wayside in early April, although the concert has just been rescheduled for May next year.
Guitarist Allatt said: “We were looking forward to the gig, as the NEC is one of the Midlands’ largest live music venues. We were especially excited because Thunder had selected Piston as an up-and-coming band they wanted to expose to their own fan base.
"I used to love hearing Ugly Kid Joe’s Everything About You as one of the songs on the TV show Gladiators. The fact my hero Wolf was on the show was purely coincidental.”
Their return to Ramblin’ Man Fair festival in June was another jewel in the 2020 crown that was thwarted, although the band has been already confirmed for the 2021 event.
Allatt accepts philosophically that, for the band, it was not to be. he added: “We received a great reception at the festival last year, even though our album was not out at the time. Those that already knew us were singing along, and those who had never heard of us we hope enjoyed the show and have since become fans."
With singer Angelico living down south, how have the band been rehearsing? They managed to hook up over the internet and had some interesting rehearsals, thrown some ideas into the pot and been exploring ideas for their second album, which is pencilled in for release at the back end of 2021.
As drummer Newlands explains: “From the summer of 2019 and into 2020 it was getting a bit crazy, and then for the band to find itself unable to meet and bounce ideas off each other has been difficult. So we began to revisit a few songs we felt had potential for improvement.
"One of these was Locked And Loaded, which never made it onto the album [2019's eponymous debut], but kind of represents how we felt about being in lockdown.”
Angelico says that they revisited another old tune, which has been reworked and released as a new single. This has been accompanied with a specially-commissioned poster which is a limited edition artwork, limited to 100 copies, and is available now via musicglue.com/piston
He adds: “We also cast a critical ear over the song Let Us Rise from our eponymous album, because we feel the band, and the country, will rise stronger and better. We feel we have had the chance to create a more three-dimensional sound, if that makes sense, and hope the song being released as our new single will get a positive reaction from fans.
"Planet Rock have just announced it is on their playlist for September, which is fantastic.”
Guitarist Allatt continued: “We will be heading out to fulfil the rescheduled dates supporting Bad Touch in 2021, especially at KK's Steel Mill in Wolverhampton on April 15."
All five members of Piston are united in one aim – playing their songs live and loud as soon as possible. And Egan said: “The band are fully rested, it’s going to be great. We’re all excited to get out again.”
The new single Let Us Rise is available to download on Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play and all other major streaming websites.
By Richard Pursehouse
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