Promising Welsh rock band, Ten Men Wide, took some time out to answer a few of our questions. Here's what guitarist James Went said when asked about the band's background, and what is to come for the band.

How did you meet, and what made you realise that you wanted to be a band between the three of you?

I met Huw, in 1998 in a maths class whilst attending Crosskeys College. He had guitar stickers on his folder so I sat next to him and asked him if he played. We discovered a common love for the 80's rock band extreme (which put us in a minority together straight away) and became friends. We lost touch during our first terms at different universities but through email managed to keep in touch over the remaining year. In summer 2001 Huw sent me a demo of a song he'd written. Even though I'd known him for 3 years I'd never heard him sing, and sing he could. We decided to form a band, much like Robin Hood, although with less theft and more virgins.

Having had more drummers than Spinal Tap in the following few years, a chance meeting with Mr. Steve of Nasrat (who I'd also known during my
Crosskeys College days), led us to our current line up; which is by far the strongest we've had so far, both technically and musically. The implementation of strange instruments such as the fretless guitar and 8 string bass along with the desire to write complex music with a sense of humour that still sounds accessible is the main ingredient that drives Ten Men Wide at this point in time.

Which artists do you admire or consider to be a major influences

For me, my main influences are Frank Zappa, Dream Theatre, Tori Amos, Kings X, Steve Vai, Bumblefoot and Freak Kitchen. To me these people are at the forefront of their genres. Whether or not the mainstream public have heard of them is irrelevant as the music they make or have made speaks for itself. They have attained a level of musicianship that their technical ability is no longer a hurdle in the way of them making music. This is something that drives me to achieve the same - not only that [but] they are true artists who make music because they have to, not because they choose to. The music is inside of them. [Other than] music I would also class Bill Hicks, Salvador Dali and the Monty Python team as influences of the type of person I am.

Artists I admire at the moment are The Darkness, Nine Inch Nails, Audioslave and again Bumblefoot who I'm very fortunate to be able to call a friend in addition to him being a huge influence.

Stephen adds: Major influences as a musician are Simon Phillips, Dennis Chambers, Dave Weckl, and Paul Elliot. Artists I admire; Linkin Park, Freak Kitchen, Dream Theatre, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Stevie Wonder and Prince.

Where do you see yourselves going as a band next?

I hope to continue what we're doing now. Which is to make music that remains different from the mainstream, but is still as accessible as anything you're likely to see on MTV. The next step is a record/distribution deal which will enable us to get our music into more people's hands, in turn this will mean we will be able to travel further afield to play. I doubt very much that we'll ever be media darlings as to be honest, we're just not 'cool' enough.

Unfortunately the industry is more geared to what haircut you have or how many gun fights you've been in. We're just 3 very middle class boys who enjoy making music with a certain twist. I do hope though that people will see this as a good thing and just enjoy the music as we do. If people enjoy what I do and in return I can make a living off of playing music then I have achieved my goal, which in turn will have more integrity than being a pop idol.

With so many Welsh rock outfits being successful in recent years do you feel there's any pressure to succeed just because you're Welsh, or is it not an issue at all?

I don't really consider it much of an issue. The 'cool Cymru' thing was invented by the media around the Britpop explosion of the mid '90's to publicise bands such as the Manics, the Stereophonics, Catatonia etc. I'm sure that none of these bands ever thought it was that much of an issue either. It's unfortunate that someone's nationality should lead to a certain amount of success as that could be classed as reverse racism. However, record companies use this as a marketing ploy which does work very well and leads to 14 year old girls from Exeter with Welsh flags on their wall.

Finally what are your plans for the near future?

Get laid, eat more and find out what is causing that strange sound that happens when your mobile phone is about to go off.

You can check out the latest information on Ten Men Wide through our website at Room Thirteen or you can visit their own website located at