This week we caught up with Morgan Dunn, guitarist of the band Avarice and student at Newcastle College University Centre. Morgan studies BMus Popular Music Performance alongside his band has just released his first album Sanctify on Newcastle College's in-house label PushPuzzle.
Name: Morgan Dunn
Course: BMus Popular Music Performance
Role in the band: Rhythm Guitarist
Who are you inspired by and why? I take influence from a lot of players but the players that have inspired me the most are Randy Rhoads, James Hetfield, Mark Tremonti and Sean Long.
What advice would you give to your 16 year-old self? I would tell myself to say 'yes' to every opportunity. I look back and think about all of the potentially great experiences I've turned down because I've said no without realising how good they could have been for me.
What has been the best part of your course? Mostly, being able to practice and write with Avarice as it has been the perfect creative outlet so far. It has also been great to improve on my ability as a musician alongside my bandmates, whilst simultaneously gaining experience in the studio recording our EP.
Tell us what you are most excited about for your upcoming album release? We wrote the songs for the EP about a year ago now, and we have all been waiting for this release since we finished recording it back in March before the pandemic. So, in reality I'd say that I'm just happy to have it out there so I can share our love for the songs with our friends, family and potential fan base.
Tell us something that has positively surprised you while working on this project? Since I am a bit of a geek, I like to watch interviews with artists, particularly about their overall experiences in the music world. One common theme was a lot of them didn't enjoy the lengthy process of recording an album/EP in the studio, so it was a positive surprise when I came away from recording Sanctify feeling refreshed and happy. I really enjoyed that experience.
If you were stuck on a desert island and could take only 3 albums – which 3 would you choose? This is really difficult for me to choose as I love a lot of genres so I'll stick to the rock/metal realm. First would have to be AB III by Alter Bridge, it's all I enjoy about Alter Bridge, it has unbelievable amounts with melody with the contrast of heavy instrumentation. My favourite album at the moment is probably SO WHAT? By While She Sleeps for the same reasons as AB III, it has everything that I enjoy about this band on this one album. My final choice probably has to go to Nightmare by Avenged Sevenfold as it is the album that made me love the more modern side to metal as I was only a classic metalhead before hearing it.
What is the best thing about college for you? College has really brought me out of my shell, as I was quite sheltered before joining. After meeting my bandmates and other people, I felt confident in myself, which doesn't happen all too often.
Make sure to check out Avarice's new releases, which are available to download on Spotify.