Salem Esme Surfleet 2020
The News

Salem Hit The K! Pit And Prepare New EP

Creeper frontman Will Gould’s goth-punk outfit unleash their fiendish charm on The K! Pit, in association with Nordic Spirit

Salem – the goth-punk band formed by Creeper frontman Will Gould during the pandemic – have recorded the follow-up to their self-titled debut EP. Their as-yet-untitled next musical instalment will drop in early 2021, the singer confirms to Kerrang!.

It’s quite odd because if this was a Creeper project it would be shrouded in secrecy and I wouldn’t even be telling you about it!” laughs Will. There would be an elaborate concept around it and some kind of big unveiling plan, but with Salem things are much easier to deal with.”

Recorded in Devon at Peter Miles’s Middle Farm Studios, details of the band’s second EP have yet to be fully confirmed, but the liberating impact of Salem on Will is evident. At the heart of the band lies the strong creative partnership he’s forged with fellow songwriter and guitarist Matt Reynolds.

Matt has been the guitar tech for Creeper for a long time, so he has seen me play more shows than anybody else, but he has a storied career of his own which goes back to bands like Howards Alias that I used to go and see play back in the day,” says Will, referring to Southampton’s progressive punk band with whom Matt played in the early 2000s. He has so many riffs and such a work ethic, it’s incredible. I can do things he can’t, and vice versa, so it’s great working with him on music. He’s also a producer so he’s knows exactly what he’s doing. Sometimes he almost plays me like an instrument!”

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Will’s admiration for his friend and bandmate is evident, and he is clearly enjoying leading a double-life of fronting both Creeper and Salem. The former, of course, released their second album, Sex, Death & The Infinite Void, in July and were due to spend most of 2020 on tour. COVID put paid to that, of course, forcing Will to find new ways of being creative, Salem being one of them.

In many ways it’s been a really interesting year – strange, but interesting. We basically had a year off with Creeper, I deleted social media, and almost became a ghost,” he muses of the period that followed the band’s show at London’s KOKO in November 2018, at which they appeared to announce their split in a Bowie-styled moment of intrigue. 

This year was meant to be the year of our return, but of course things changed as we were getting ready to release the record,” he continues. The strange thing, though, is that this year I have actually released more music than in any other year thanks to being in Creeper and Salem. That’s quite ironic, really!”

For Will, 2020 has been about returning to first principles and getting to grips with the ever-changing challenges thrown up by the global pandemic.

I’ve almost been forced to relearn everything I knew when I was a kid, and to go back to doing things simply,” he reflects. When you start a band and you don’t have a banner as a backdrop, you just spray paint it yourself. When you can’t afford to make a video, you get a friend with a camera to make one for you. There’s no real handbook for a musician in terms of the time we’re living through. In a way the challenge is to make something out of nothing. That’s kind of what we’ve been doing.”

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Since they first announced their formation a few months back, Salem have rarely had the chance to play live. There have been four socially-distanced shows, and one set which they played for Kerrang! as part of our much-loved K! Pit series hosted in association with Nordic Spirit, that set airs tonight at 6pm (UK), 1pm (EST), 10am (PST) on Kerrang!‘s Facebook and YouTube.

As The K! Pit is filmed in compliance with governmental guidelines, we couldn’t invite anyone to hang out at the show itself. To make up for that, Will and Salem will be joining us on Facebook to hang out with you as we stream their set!

But that’s not all, we’re also giving you the chance to win one of 20 exclusive posters created for the show – all of which were signed by the band. And, thanks to Nordic Spirit – the UK’s No 1 Nicotine Pouch* – you could win a rucksack full of swag! Inside the bag you’ll find a K! Pit hoodie, a beanie, a mug, a wireless phone charger and headphones. And there’s more too!

Nordic Spirit are also partnering with Download Festival, and over the next four weeks, one person will get the chance to win a golden ticket to attend Download in 2021. What does that golden ticket do? It will allow you and three friends to enjoy VIP access at the festival – camping included!

In fact, Will is also rather excited at the prospect of Download 2021 – and with good reason.

I’m putting in a double shift next year,” he beams. I’ll be playing with Creeper in the afternoon and Salem in the morning [on Saturday June 5]. Hopefully that’s a sign that both bands are quite different, but they can also co-exist.”

To enter the competition and stand a chance of seeing Will not once but twice during Download weekend, you just need to answer the following question correctly:

What is the first track on Salem’s debut EP?

Know the answer? Then fill in the form below! If you can’t see the form, head over here to enter the competition.

20 lucky people will receive the exclusive signed poster and bag of K! Pit branded merch and Nordic Spirit goodies, and one of you will get yer hands on those four Download VIP tickets!

Nordic Spirit is a 100% tobacco-free nicotine pouch perfect for when smoking or vaping is not possible. You must be over 18 to enter this competition. Nordic Spirit products contain nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive substance.

Existing adult nicotine users can log on to the Nordic Spirit site to claim a free sample.

*IRi Market Place, volume Share, Nicotine Pouch Category, Total UK, YTD to w/e 04/10/2020. For more information or to verify contact nordicspirit.co.uk/contact.

Salem Packshot Cropped

Terms & Conditions

1. The Nordic Spirit X K! Pit Prize Draw (the Prize Draw”) is open to people: 

    1. aged 18 and over 
    2. residents of the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man 

2. The Prize Draw is not open to employees of the Company and their families, the Company’s agencies or their employees and families or anyone else professionally associated with the Prize Draw. 

  1. To enter the Prize Draw, entrants must answer the question posed on this page. 

4. The Prize Draw is open from December 1. The winners will be chosen at random and will be contacted by email by Dec 21

  1. By entering this promotion, entrants confirm that they have read and agree to be bound by these terms and conditions and by the decisions of the Company, which are final in all matters relating to the promotion. Failure to do so will result in the forfeiture of the prize. No correspondence will be entered into. The Company or its agencies accept no responsibility for any loss, injury or damage suffered through acceptance of the prize. The Company reserves the right to refuse entry or refuse to award the prize to anyone in breach of these terms and conditions. 
  1. The Company or its agencies will not be responsible for the non-inclusion of entries as a result of technical failures or otherwise, including any such failure which is within the control of the Company or its agencies. Proof of submission of entry is not proof of receipt of entry. 

7. There will be 20 winners selected, who will each win the following prize: A signed poster and K! Pit rucksack containing a hoody, beanie, wireless phone charger, product giftbox (for those qualified), rucksack, mug, headphones. 

  1. One additional golden ticket’ prize will be offered at random across all K! Pit competitions which will run until Dec 20. This will consist of VIP access to the Download festival for one competition winner + three friends, and will include camping. 
  2. The winner of the golden ticket will be chosen at random and will be notified in written form when the posters and rucksacks are mailed out. 
  3. In the event of the festival being cancelled, no alternative prize will be offered. 
  4. Only one entry per competition per person (note: each stream will be accompanied by a new competition which can be entered into on each occasion). Entries must not be sent through agencies or third parties. 
  5. Lost or stolen Prizes cannot be refunded or exchanged. 
  6. The Prizes are as stated and subject to availability. There are no other prize alternatives available, except the Company reserves the right to substitute the Prize with a similar prize of equal or greater value if circumstances beyond the Company’s control makes it necessary to do so. The Prize is non-transferable and will only be issued in the name of the winning participant(s).
  7. The prizes will be posted by Kerrang! to the winners at the address supplied by them on the entry form within a reasonable time following the announcement of the winners. 
  8. By entering the Prize Draw, participants acknowledge that the Company, and any agencies acting on its behalf, will process the personal data submitted by the participants (such as name, address, email address and telephone numbers) for the purpose of running this promotion; including displaying their name on scoreboards, administering the prizes and publicising the winner’s name. Except as described, any personal data provided will not be disclosed to any third parties or transferred outside the EU
  9. Under no circumstances will the Company (or its parent subsidiaries or affiliated companies) be liable (unless such liability cannot be lawfully excluded) for any losses, damages, costs or expenses arising from or in any way connected with the promotion or any prize connected with the promotion. 
  10. The Company reserves the right to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process. 
  11. The Company reserves the right to cancel, amend, terminate, temporarily suspend or withdraw this Prize Draw promotion in the event of unforeseen circumstances outside its reasonable control at any time. In such circumstances the Company shall have no liability to any participant. 
  12. The Company cannot accept any responsibility for prize warranties and guarantees. The winner must refer directly to the manufacturer in the case of any faulty goods. 
  13. The decision of the Company is final and no correspondence will be entered into. 
  14. Company: Gallaher Limited, Members Hill, Brooklands Road, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 OQU.
Posted on December 1st 2020, 9:00a.m.
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