by Margaret Chrystall
ASK lead singer Jake Bolt of Inverness band The Oxides what brought them back to life after two years and he says "Unfinished business".
After the band’s Friday the 13th debut in 2012, The Oxides’ luck held beyond a second line-up change in 2014.
But imminent fatherhood for a couple of members of the band meant that – poised to produce their debut album – Jake announced the end of The Oxides on Facebook that Hogmanay. On Hogmanay 2016, a post signalled an unexpected return for the band.
And now The Oxides will play two city gigs in the space of a week.
"We just started rehearsing in September for the crack really," said Jake. "And I could have carried on doing that for a few months, but it was this lot..."
"You can only rehearse for so long," said bassist Archie Stewart.
Jake added: "Then the gig this Friday at the Raigmore Motel was offered to us by Ralia. And our lot sort of pressured me into doing it. So we are."
The Oxides will also be appearing with PAWS at the Tooth & Claw six days after that.
Jake said: "The PAWS gig came up and I couldn’t say no to that. Their album was definitely my favourite album of last year.
"And we supported them exactly four years ago to the day of this gig!"
But Jake is hoping if the band is revived to be able to find someone to help with the admin of organising gigs.
"We’re looking for management, getting these two gigs out of the way and then seeing what we can muster in the way of a bit of a hand."
The band is picking up where it left off. Mikey Duncan had joined the line-up as guitarist with Tom Fullerton on drums and the two had just learned the songs and started contributing to writing when time was called.
Jake said: "We’ve been rehearsing the set we ended with which was good and there are a couple of newer songs – and really old ones too.
"But all the hits are there!" he said with a wry smile.
"It’s hard to get too far from the set we had just before we finished.
"And unfinished business is definitely the main reason to get out and play again."
During the time out, Jake moved to Liverpool – and still keeps a foot in the place that he believes has re-inspired his music.
"Every weekend you would go out and see another absolutely amazing band.
"Taking the quality aspect of it, you know what to strive for.
"And my goal is to get this album done and then at least I’ve got that for my wee girl," said Jake referring to his-three-year-old.
Jake and Archie are looking forward to returning to play in the Raigmore Motel in different times.
Conversation turns to politics – the subject of new Oxide songs, perhaps?
Jake laughed: "Our lyrics are always the same, they’re about girls – or drinking.
"We’ll have to get some anti-Brexit songs..."
The Oxides play with Ralia at the Raigmore Motel on Friday, February 10 – and support PAWS at the Tooth & Claw on Thursday, February 16.