Lauren’s choice comes from Leeds/Manchester based Sertraline.
“Ooh, suffocating in this world, how are you surviving here?”
Words that, if you didn’t know better, sound like they could be describing the current lockdown for a lot of people across the world at the moment. But that is actually far from the reality of Sertraline’s new single Isolation.
Written back in November 2019 as part of the writing sessions for their upcoming EP Clouded Minds & Silver Lines, Lizzie, Mike, Tom, Si and Hendo had no way of knowing just how prophetic the lyrics of their new single would end up becoming. The follow up to Inside Out (the first single from Clouded Minds & Silver Lines and their most successful single to date), Isolation combines the timely lyrics with a soaring chorus, enormous riffs and a gigantic breakdown that will have heads banging across the UK and beyond.
The lyric video for Isolation can be enjoyed below. A full music video is in the works, but was unfortunately delayed due to the UK lockdown.
Lauren’s choice is “Isolation” and as our Track Of The Week, we will play this every day at 6am, Midday, 6pm and Midnight.
Sertralineformed from the ashes of hard rock band Blue Origin, based in Stoke-on-Trent, UK. Founding members Mike Hawkings, Dan ‘Hendo’ Henderson, Josh Sutton and Tom Eivers were excited about starting a new project and needed a singer to complete the line-up. After several weeks of advertising and auditions, Lizzie Parry was recruited to complete the band in August 2014. With a couple of songs ready and written, work began on their debut EP ‘Bury the Ghosts’, which was recorded in the October of the same year at Vale Studios. Sertraline’s first live performance was also in October 2014, at Grand Central in Manchester. From there, the band built some hype and released their debut single ‘Set The World Alight’in December 2014. It was a busy first 5 months!
Still being a new band, 2015 was spent raising Sertraline’s profile within the UK underground scene. The video for ‘Set the World Alight’ was released in February, closely followed by the debut 6 track EP ‘Bury the Ghosts’.
The EP was very well received and catapulted the band into the spotlight. Gigs filled the diary, including support slots with Toselandand Kobra and the Lotusat local venue The Sugarmill. It was in 2015 that Sertraline embarked on their first UK tour, supporting Denmark’s Forever Still. These high-profile shows helped to push the first EP, whilst creating the foundations of a widespread fanbase.
The back end of 2015 gave Sertraline their first test. A small, headline UK tour was booked to celebrate a year of the band, however one member couldn’t commit to touring demands. As a result, Josh Sutton was permanently replaced on guitar by Tom Wilson, who already knew Mike from their days at University. Tom slotted in effortlessly to the group’s dynamic, and the first headline tour was an immense success for such a new band. A couple of new songs were in the works, and Sertraline felt very positive for the future.
Despite the positivity, the challenges of 2015 were not over yet. December 2015 saw Tom Eivers leave the band, and Sertraline ended the year without a drummer.
Now a 4 piece; Lizzie, Mike, Hendo and Tom refused to let a lack of drummer get in the way of progress. They recruited Lizzie’s friend Ed Dennis, a professional session musician, to help fulfil their gig commitments. This included a memorable support slot to Butcher Babiesand Sumo Cyco at The Live Rooms in Chester. Not even the writing process had been affected; 5 new songs that would make up Sertraline’s second EP were complete and ready to record.
Sertraline hit Vale Studios in May 2016 to record the new EP. Ed was available to track the drums and smashed out all 5 songs in one day. The band spent a week adding all the other layers, producing the EP themselves with the aid of engineer Chris D’Adda. 4 video diaries were filmed to document the making of the EP, you can find the videos on YouTube here.
To add to the year’s phenomenal workload, auditions for drummers were also taking place. Si Douglas from Manchester stood out from all the rest, he was invited to join Sertraline for 9 dates on their 2016 Single Release Tour. The UK tour was 12 dates in total and took the band to both new and previously visited cities. Si relished the challenge and grew more confident with every show. Following the tour, single ‘Change of Heart’ was released worldwide along with a music video.
The new single created a buzz about Sertraline’s new material, and another release date was eagerly anticipated. On 21st November 2016, a release date and pre-order packs were announced for the new EP ‘Guilty’.
With the release of ‘Guilty’ scheduled for 3rd March 2017, Sertraline opened the year with an EP release tour. The tour was a chance for fans to hear the EP before it’s official release, and the band enjoyed shows across England, Scotland and Wales promoting the EP. Reviews flooded in, building the expectations: “Spiced with emotion and attention grabbing tracks, you cannot fail to be impressed with them” – RAMzine” “Emotive potency…colossal grooves” – Metal Hammer “Another strong contender in the UK melodic scene is on the rise here” – Distorted Sound Magazine
The EP was an instant success with fans. Although the record was more experimental and heavier than ‘Bury the Ghosts’, it showcased the band’s song writing ability at its best, highlighting the progress they had made since the line-up change. The EP release was quickly followed up with a music video for ‘I Admit the Blame’, which has since racked up thousands of YouTube views.
Sertraline spent the remainder of 2017 promoting the EP, primarily through live shows. Highlights included Chester Live Festival, Sonder Festival, headlining The Slade Rooms (Wolverhampton), supporting VOLAat Sanctuary Live (Basingstoke). Meanwhile, the band’s online presence had been steadily growing, reaching 3,900 Facebook likes at the end of the year. Si Douglas was now firmly in place as the drummer for the band.
2018 brought Sertraline some incredible career highlights. In February, a UK/EU Tour was announced. 8 dates covering 4 countries; England, France, Switzerland & Italy. This was the first overseas venture for Sertraline and they couldn’t have asked for a better introduction to Europe. They returned to the UK having won over many new fans, alongside making great relationships with the overseas bands and venues.
January through June saw the 2018 editions of the Metal 2 The Masses competition take place. The winners of each region were awarded a slot at the UK’s biggest heavy metal festival, Bloodstock Open Air. Sertraline entered the competition with no expectations, but a lot of determination, and went on to win the Lincolnshire region. They played a storming set on theNew Blood stage at BOA, receiving nothing but positive reviews:
“Great quality on show and a enigmatic performance made them one of the highlights of the day” – Rock ’n’ Load “They had an almighty kick about them” – Decibel Geek “Sertraline are another band with a big future ahead of them” – GBHBL “Today’s stand out band” – RAMzine
Sertraline spent the remainder of 2018 working on new material; in particular a single, which was recorded with Pointy Halo Productions ready for release in 2019.
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