WHILE SHE SLEEPS // Lawrence ‘Loz’ Taylor & Aaran Mckenzie “We Want People to Be Able to Feel Free to Self-Hell. We Want to Entertain Everyone”

As we descend upon the biggest weekend on heavy music’s calendar, UK metalcore outfit While She Sleeps sat down with us to reflect and recap on their year.

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Before taking to the Good Things Festival stage, the boys swirled around Europe this past summer, performing on stages like Rock For People, Full Force Festival and the almighty Wacken Open Air in Germany. Frontman Lawrence Taylor (or as we all know him as, Loz) reflects:

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“(Europe) were some of the best shows we’ve ever played really, as a band. Good slots on great stages, filled with good bands, as festivals in Europe usually are. We’ve just been enjoying getting out there and smashing it and it’s been a lot of fun.”

Of course, if anyone is familiar with the band’s back catalogue, their music was destined for incredible festival stages. From 2019’s SO WHAT? Era featuring tracks like The Guilty Party and Anti-Social to their breakthrough Sleeps Society in 2021, the band’s gritty, manic blend of metal and hard rock has united a scene. A While She Sleeps set is a place to celebrate freedom in a safe space. Almost like they’re building their own sense of euphoria, which is pretty much what the lads have put forth with the lead single from their 2024 release, Self Hell:

“We want people to be able to feel free to it, you know. It’s like, you don’t have to throw yourself around to get punched in the face. We’re playing to bigger crowds now and we feel like we’ve worked hard over the years to establish our band. So I think with the first single, we just wanted to have some fun and let people interpret that however it evolves to them, you know? We want to entertain and for everyone, that isn’t necessarily moshing. So we interjected some different sounds in there. Hopefully, people have fun with Self-Hell when we play it live. So that’s definitely the vibe we went for.” – Loz Taylor

Self-Hell, while being about celebrating authenticity and freedom, also evokes a feeling of self-acceptance. Loz and bassist Aaran McKenzie are pretty stoked with what they’ve done with the new track, almost like they know their worth in this scene:

“I think there’s always been an underlying, an undercurrent to our albums that are like, you know, things can be really shitty and quite hard for people at times. At the end of the day, we’re there to entertain and we want people to enjoy themselves at our shows. So that undercurrent of, yeah, the world can be a shit place sometimes. But we’re all kind of in it together, so we might as well try and enjoy it while we can. Let’s celebrate that.” – Loz Taylor

As a band, we really love Australia. It’s like, a bit more of a gnarlier UK. It’s always great to connect with the Australian fans.
[ Loz Taylor, While She Sleeps ]

Flashback to the band’s very first headliner of Australia last July, where the band packed out decent-sized venues like Brisbane’s The Triffid and the iconic Corner Hotel in Melbourne. Aaran fondly recollects how the band’s very first shows down under in 2017/2018 were to about 100 people and to see their show to 1000 in a few short years is nothing short of “chaos” but also  “amazing”. Like many bands who tour here though, the While She Sleeps boys have grown quite fond of our country – as Loz cheekily shares:

“As a band, we really love Australia. It’s like, a bit more of a gnarlier UK. It’s always great to connect with the Australian fans.”

The pair are equally as stoked and overjoyed to return to Australia on this year’s edition of Good Things Festival, sharing the stage with friends and icons alike, from Fall Out Boy, Limp Bizkit, The Plot in You to Enter Shikari and even Devo:

“Limp Bizkit is one of those bands for us that I think we all listen to as kids and I’m really enjoying the Bizkit’s new vibe at the moment. All the dad vibe stuff was hilarious and just so much fun. They just seem to be having fun on stage. So that’ll be one for us, as well. A couple of albums ago I really got into one of the new The Plot In You records, so I’ll be stoked to see them. We actually saw them play in America a few years back and I remember Landon Tewer’s voice being amazing. But the whole lineup is quite diverse. You’ve got Enter Shikari in there, Devo doing like their final tour and it’s just going to be a fun time. it feels like the right sort of fun with the right sort of lineup to be in the sunshine. There’s a lot going on for different fans of rock and metal.” – Loz Taylor

The Festival will also give many bands to reunite as they have on previous stages around the world. It’s safe to say that Good Things this weekend is going to feel somewhat like a family reunion:

“A few of us have been massive fans of Pennywise for years. Because we know the Enter Shikari lads and we know the Bullet for My Valentine lads quite well. It will be nice just to hang out with everyone. There’s a lot of good bands on so I think any opportunity we get to chill and watch some other bands play would be nice.” – Aaran McKenzie

Pre-order Self Hell here.


Fall Out Boy
Limp Bizkit
Devo (The Farewell Tour Celebrating 50 Years)
I Prevail | Bullet For My Valentine | Corey Taylor
Pennywise | Spiderbait | Slowly Slowly | Enter Shikari
Behemoth | Sepultura | Taking Back Sunday | PVRIS

In Alphabetical Order:

Bloom | Boom Crash Opera | Eskimo Joe | Frenzal Rhomb | Hanabie | Jebediah | Luca Brasi
Magnolia Park | Make Them Suffer | Ocean Sleeper | Royal & The Serpent | Short Stack
Slaughter To Prevail | Stand Atlantic | Tapestry | The Plot In You | While She Sleeps


Friday 1 December // Flemington Racecourse // Melbourne (LIC AA 15+)
Saturday 2 December // Centennial Park // Sydney (18+)
Sunday 3 December // Brisbane Showgrounds // Brisbane (LIC AA 15+)

Tickets available here.

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