On the radar: Black Peaks

Joe Gosney, guitarist with Brighton's Black Peaks, has had a better-than-average week when we speak to him in late January.

His band have just passed their new single Glass Built Castles (due 6 April) to Radio One, only to find it quickly championed by rock jock Daniel P Carter, dubbed hottest record in the world today by Zane Lowe and land the station's coveted single of the week slot.

"We're so hungry as a band that we always find pre-release times quite difficult. You're just itching to get out there and play," says the guitarist.

"But getting that first track out there on radio has been amazing and the response… it's done so much more than we thought it would, so we're really happy."

Snorting stag

The track in question is a snorting, head-banging rock stag with elements of prog entangled in its antlers. Carter describes it as "Jeff Buckley meets Tool, with a bit of Mastodon".

"It's got to be powerful. Dark, heavy and with that beautiful edge to it" - Joe Gosney

"It's got to be powerful," says Joe of the band's sound. "It's a really shit answer, but it's got to evoke an emotion in you. Dark, heavy and with that beautiful edge to it."


Joe's the only guitarist in the band, so beefs up his tone with a Gibson SG and Les Paul Custom through an Orange Rocker. Then it's a Line 6 DL4, Seymour Duncan Shape Shifter, Boss RV-5 reverb, Electro-Harmonix #1 Echo, Ibanez Tube Screamer, Marshall Bluesbreaker, DigiTech DropTune and… you get the picture.

"I do like my effects," he states. "But I try to hold back on them, because playing live, it's much more important for us to be performing and running about onstage rather than staring at my 'board the whole time. So they get used quite selectively. More and more so, especially on the album, it's been about getting great tones just using the guitar and amp."

After some dark times, it seems - if you'll excuse our inner Partridge - that the sky's now the limit for British rock.

"Last year was a good year for rock in the UK, and it seems to be making a resurgence," reckons Joe. "Royal Blood kicked off massively, but then bands like Marmozets and Lonely The Brave as well - they're all putting decent well-written rock tunes back on the map in the UK. We have a lot to thank those bands for, because without them opening that music back up to a wider audience we might not be getting the opportunities we get now."

  • For fans of: Tool, Marmozets, Lonely The Brave
  • Hear: Glass Built Castles
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