“Always writing about my own personal issues is quite a self-involved act, and I just hope that these songs do actually reach out on a personal level to people other than myself,” declares James Dagg, vocalist of Brighton pop punks Six Time Champion, discussing the origin of the title for their recently released EP More Than Me. Recorded at The Outhouse with John Mitchell (Architects, Lower Than Atlantis), More Than Me sees the quintet slickening up, whilst still retaining the somewhat aggressive edge that has become their hallmark. Following the EP’s release last month, Dagg opens up on the subject of lyrics…
How do you write your lyrics? What is your process either as a band or individually?
I’m always writing ideas, usually just small chunks of lyrics. When the rest of the guys bring an instrumental my way I then take some of those ideas and work around them to form an entire song.
What is the lyric you’re proudest of and why?
Hmm, this is certainly something I’ve never really thought about, however I’d have to say one of my favourites is “If you take all of your problems, and burn them with the lies you’ve told, although the smoke might fill your lungs, in the ashes you’ll find gold”. I like this lyric mainly because it’s something that I wrote a long time ago, and it just always seemed to stick with me.
What themes and topics do you like to cover and why?
I generally focus on my personal issues and experiences. Everything I write Is just a reflection of my mind, but I aim to write the lyrics in a way that allows people other than myself to connect with them.
Has anyone ever misheard, perhaps to comedic effect, or misunderstood the intention of your lyrics?
I think a lot of my lyrics are misinterpreted. I’ve had a lot of people assume that the lyrics I’ve written are about a girl or a break up, when in truth I’ve never actually written a song based on either of those topics. I don’t see this as a bad thing though, I’m glad that people can interpret my lyrics and relate to them in different ways that I initially intended.
Which of your own lyrics best sums up your band?
“I’m so tired, we’re all so tired”.
If you had to have any lyric tattooed on you, if you don’t already, what would you pick?
“Until death relieves me” from the Stick To Your Guns track The Suspend.
What lyric do you wish you’d written and why?
“Because you were the light of my life, but no matter how brightly you shone the shadow you cast was never dark enough to cancel out the glare” from Casey’s track Hell. The lyrics throughout the entire tracks are so well written, but this particular section just stuck with me from the first time I heard it.
Who are your favourite lyricists? What are some of the lines that best connect with you? Do you take influence from that?
There are so many great lyricists that I take subtle influences from. I’d say a real favourite of mine over the past couple years would have to be Jon Simmons from Balance And Composure. His lyrics come across so poetic, without being overly complex, allowing for a real connection to be made. “Hate in these veins all again, All that it leads to is sin, Fuck what you told me, It all leads to smoking alone in my room in the end” is a favourite of mine.
What are the worst lyrics you’ve ever heard?
“Just say you feel the way that I feel. I’m feeling sexual, so we should be sexual Just say you feel the way that I feel I’m feeling sexual, so we should be sexual”
Finally, please sign off with some words of wisdom!
There are many different ways of writing “good” lyrics, it’s not always about the technique, or using big words. It’s really about making a connection with your words, and I believe that anyone has the power to do that in one way or another, it just takes time and patience.
Six Time Champion released More Than Me digitally and physically on 14/10/16. Get it at: http://www.sixtimechampion.bigcartel.com