The Glasgow band discuss touring with new music and returning to live gigs ahead of their appearance at TRNSMT
'I don't think we've ever been settled…' said singer and guitarist Hadyn Park-Patterson as he arrived back to his Glasgow flat from a cycle delivery shift. He was referring to The Ninth Wave's constantly evolving sound and use of instruments. Since their inception in 2017, the Glasgow band's discography has contained splashes of electronica, goth, post punk, synth and art pop, written and played by a high turnover of bandmates. 'We've never really found our sound, we just make what we want to make at the time.'
Since their 2019 SAY Award-nominated album Infancy the group went on to support bands like The Blinders, Yonaka and Chvrches. As they now head on their own UK tour, post-lockdown rehearsals reminded them that they couldn't rest on their laurels; 'we went back into our studio for the first time to start rehearsing for a gig and we were just like "oh my god, we sound like a shit cover band of ourselves". We were all really worried! When you've not played live for so long and you're still making music, you're really not thinking about the practicalities of having to play that live and how it will translate.'
Park-Patterson, alongside bandmates Millie Kidd, Callum Stewart and Kyalo Searle-Mbullu have recently released singles 'Maybe You Didn't Know' and 'Piece And Pound Coins'. The use of more acoustic guitars in the upcoming body of work show yet another side to The Ninth Wave, one which leans more heavily into indie pop and rock. 'We all have quite different tastes in the band and all of that is starting to seep into the music,' Park-Patterson said. Where Hadyn and Millie would previously take charge on creating demos and writing lyrics, 'it's a lot more of an even spread now of music, words, ideas.'
The Ninth Wave came up through the Glasgow music scene, alongside bands like The Lapelles and The Vegan Leather. 'The thing about Glasgow is that it's so wee so everyone kind of knows everyone,' said Park-Patterson. 'It's so easy to know everyone who is making stuff and it's so easy to support them. When we were first starting out, there were a nice bunch of bands doing a similar thing... everyone was bouncing off each other a wee bit which was really good. In other cities I really don't think you get that.'
As more and more in-person festivals and gigs begin again, the excitement and slog of touring return with them. But playing a mix of old and new material to a home crowd at TRNSMT is nothing short of a pleasure for The Ninth Wave. 'To be honest with you I don't miss sitting in a van driving down to England,' Park-Patterson admitted, 'but I really do miss every single day getting on a stage and just feeling so lucky that people want to see our band. It takes you by surprise every time. I would never like to get used to people singing along to our songs because it's such a nice (and weird) thing to experience.'
The Ninth Wave perform on Fri 10 Sep on the River Stage at TRNSMT festival in Glasgow. Tickets for their 2021 UK tour are available now.