Searching Alaska – Journey To Download

Adam Wollerton

This week I was given the opportunity to interview the brilliant new band Searching Alaska on their quest to perform at this year’s Download Festival in June. If you haven’t heard of Searching Alaska yet, then check out their powerful covers and original songs – in particular ‘Our Defences’ which recently found itself onto Kerrang! This is your chance dear Vada readers to support a new band in reaching their dream – and it is completely free!

So, who are Searching Alaska? The band is made up of five members – Christina (Vocalist), Jamie (Drums), Jake (Guitar), Toby (Guitar), and Jamie (Bass). Jamie, Toby and Damien were the originals when they decided to launch a band after visiting local gigs in their home town. After creating the band, they decided they needed a vocalist, so found Christina through her YouTube channel. When invited to meet with the band she brought along Jake, and so Searching Alaska began.

Recently, the band were given the opportunity to perform at the Download Festival. The only thing in their way is a week long competition to gain votes to be able to go to the festival. With this in mind, I interviewed the band to allow our readers to get an insight into these guys, their sound and to find out what they are all about.


Vada: How would you describe your music?

Toby, the guitarist, described their music as ‘an energetic mix of heavy and melodic music, blending different elements of rock and metal that inspire us.’ Jake, also a guitarist, added that their music is made of ‘cheeky and powerful guitar riffs, tastefully ambient arrangements and a girl with a ridiculous range’. It makes you want to listen just to hear what a ‘cheeky’ riff is right?

What do your fans mean to you all?

This question was particularly nice to hear the replies to, as even though each of the band members were interviewed separately, each of them said pretty much the same thing. Jamie (Drums) summed it up with ‘our fans are the reason we make music’. It is humbling to know that the support shown to the band through their YouTube channel and buyers of their music and merchandise is truly valued by the artists in the band.

Recently, a fan of Searching Alaska snapped a photo of your new single ‘Our Defences’ on Kerrang – How did that feel?

Christina: ‘It was actually amazing! We had no idea we were being broadcast on Kerrang until one morning I woke up to about 10 different messages from texts, tweets and Facebook and I was like GUYS WE’RE ON KERRANG! My manager was sleeping in the same room as me and I just shouted her name over and over until she woke up to tell her! It was a really crazy moment!’

Can you tell me what Searching Alaska are trying to gain votes for?

Toby: ‘The Red Bull Download Festival competition. We made it to the second stage of the competition, and were put forward by the voters to record a live studio session at The Red Bull Studios in London. Now the voters can support us in the final stage from the 17th May onwards by voting for us to play at Download Festival!’ Jake also added that ‘a band that has barely been going a year with this type of opportunity restores my faith in the industry.’

What would it mean to the band to play Download?

Jake: ‘it would be such a huge moment in all our lives and one we’d never forget.’

So, how can Vada readers help Searching Alaska reach their goal?

This is the important bit guys and girls! To help this band reach their dream and play to a festival audience, you just have to vote for their video. You can do this once every twenty four hours. Here’s the link to check out Searching Alaska’s voting page directly. Don’t forget to vote!

Christina and Damien: We’d like to thank anyone for reading this article, even if you vote just once, or have heard our name by reading this, it really means the world!

Jamie and Toby: Thanks for the support and hope to see you at a gig soon!

Jake: If you have already checked us out and liked our stuff – thank you! And if you haven’t heard of us, follow us, we’ll always strive to improve on our sound and we have some seriously interesting music coming this summer – something none of you will have heard before!


It is always easy to support a band when they have made it, but you could be there in the very beginning for these guys. So in the search for the next Download act, just think Searching Alaska.

About Adam Wollerton

Adam is a Writer and Director of Off-West End and West End Theatre Productions. He is also the Co-Founder of Curious Tales Theatre Company and is the author of LoveStuck: A New Musical.