Michael Sirmond

Michael Sirmond

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What is your full name?

Michael Anthony Sirmond or Seth.

Where and when were you born?

I was born in Halifax General Hospital on the sixth of February 1991.

Where do you live?


Can you tell me anything about your family?

They’re all very lovely, very supporting. My mother’s lovely, she takes cares of me; she’s always been there for me. I’ve never really seen my father and he split up when I was only two. My father walked out on my mum on Christmas Day and I’ve never particularly seen him since, and the only times I have, he’s not really acknowledged me as a son, but I’ve got a step-father and he’s lovely – he’s amazing, the best thing that’s ever happened to me or my mum.

So can you tell me anything about your childhood?

I used to be deaf, and I couldn’t speak until I was about four through deafness, and then I had very bad problems with asthma. I’ve had many asthma attacks and I’ve almost died a few times through asthma attacks. I have really bad dyslexia in English; it’s got better over the years because I’ve worked on it and I’ve put a lot of effort into it but because of that, Maths has always been my thing.

Would you classify yourself as a Goth?

No, but a lot of other people and a lot of my friends would classify me as a Goth, but I don’t think of myself as…I don’t keep myself under a strict rule, but I am definitely a Goth and I have to do this because this is all what Goths do.

What would you say a Goth is?

A Goth is another person, just a human being who likes other fashion and a different style to everyone else.

How did you get into the Gothic type of fashion?

…through my music. I like Sum 41 and Linkin Park, that was my first stuff and then went into more heavy stuff like Soil and Slipknot and Korn, then I’ve into my style of music after that.

Is there a certain Goth style of music?

No, I know a lot of Goths who like…heavy metal and I know a lot of Goths who like classical music and violins; there’s anything you could really be into.

And what music do you like?

I like industrial metal, doom metal and black metal.

Who would you say is your favourite band?

Death Stars by far, then probably Cradle of Filth.

And what is your favourite album by this band?

That’s hard – sometimes I think it’s ‘Synthetic Generations’ – sometimes I think it’s Termination Bliss’ – it depends what mood I’m into and it depends how long I’ve been playing it. Sometimes I’ve played it for a couple of weeks and I’m thinking it’s a bit bored so I put the other album on, but they’re both just as good as each other, and favourites – I don’t really have a favourite song. They’re all just as good as each other and they’re all absolutely amazing, and that’s why it interest me, and that’s why it’s my favourite band. –

Do you ever go to gigs?

I’ve gone to many gigs before – I go to Manchester Academy, I’ve been to The Cockpit in Leeds, I’ve been to The Metropolitan University in Leeds but the main one is Bradford Rio. I’ve been to Death Stars, Mortice twice, Leaves Eyes and many other bands.

What kind of things do you like?

I like my bass guitar, it’s the best thing what’s ever happened – I like my friends, I like- I love drinking, that’s my greatest hobby probably, especially Guinness – it’s very fattening but I don’t mind it.

What do other people think of Goth?

…it’s kind of mixed – some people can’t stand it, I don’t know why ‘cos it’s just another fashion; I don’t see why we have to be insulted just because we’re slightly different…but a lot of people think it’s just an okay fashion – we’re better than chavs at least.

What do you think of this chav fashion?

…I’ve a fair few friends who are chavs and they stick up for me but people who don’t know me, they normal just insult me or chavs, but I’m lucky because the school where I went to, I had a lot of friends who were later to become chavs. There’s a gang known as the Mytholmroyd Lot and they get in fights with like people from Mixenden and Todmorden, and they’re basically known all around our area and they’re known as ‘hard’ kind of people, and they’re probably the strongest gang there are, and they always stick up for me, and they’re nice to me.

What do you think is the worst insult you’ve every had?

I’m getting insults all the time. Every day I walk through a corridor and it’s…’blumming Goth’ and stuff like that, so I’m so used to them I can’t just pull one out off the top of my head.

Does it affect you in any way?

No, I just think they’re ignorant and I hate them, I don’t see why they have to insult me; I don’t go around going ‘oh you’re a bloody chav and I hate yer’ so I don’t see why on earth they do it to me.

What do you think of other people who aren’t Goths?

I’m fine with them, as long as they’re okay with me I don’t really mind them, it’s just the other people I find annoying.

Would you like more of your type of music in Hebden Bridge?

No I’d hated it ‘cos I’m in a band myself playing a bass guitar and if there was more bands around Hebden Bride, it would be much harder to get noticed and more hard to get famous, and there’d be more people into my style of music, and if I went to see ‘Cradle of Filth’ or ‘Death Stars’ it’s more likely to be sell-out gigs, so I wouldn’t be able to go and see my favourite bands.

What do you think of Hebden Bridge in general?

It’s quite pathetic; a lot of shops are quite bad and there’s always fights whenever I walk through Hebden Bridge; it’s just a rubbish little town.

Does your family come from Hebden Bridge?

No, we’re a very scattered family. My mum comes from Manchester and before that she was born up in Scotland, and her dad comes from India; he was in the army what’s part of the English army in India, and he was Captain for India a few times, for rugby, and from my father’s side they originally come from Ireland and they went Scotland as well, and now they’re just dotted around Yorkshire and Lincolnshire and Manchester.

Do you think you’ll stay in Hebden Bridge when you’re older?

It depends – it depends where there’s work for me, it depends what I’m doing – money obviously, stuff like that, but I wouldn’t really mind staying around here ‘cos a lot of my friends, a lot of my family are from the Hebden Bridge area.

What do you like or dislike about older people?

I don’t dislike anything about them; my best friend is eighty-two years old, and he’s lovely; he takes me everywhere, I love him to bits – he’s like a granddad to me, and a lot of my family – they’re old. I’ve actually just come from three of my family’s funeral in the last year which I’m very upset about, but it brings us closer because I think I’d better keep in touch with my older generation, so I go down and see them often and listen to their old stories from war time and I’ve got a friend of the family which is like a grandma, and she was born in 1915 in the First World War, so very interesting stories from her. She’s still totally got her memory, so it’s lovely seeing her.

Do you like any of your teachers at school?

I don’t see anything bad about teachers, they’re just there to do a job and they get paid decent money for it. They’re setting us ready for the future, so there’s nowt really wrong with teachers.

What’s the worst thing about being a Goth in Hebden Bridge?

Most of the Goths are like in Manchester and Leeds, and they’re thirty miles each side so it’s not the easiest places to go to, and it costs a lot so you have to be in solitude a lot of the time, and you have to stick with whatever Gothic kind of people or heavy metal people there are around Hebden Bridge, but there’s not many so you don’t have many friends, and you get more insults than compliments.

Do you think you’ll always be into this Gothic style?

Probably, hopefully – I’ll always be into…well it’s my style, it’s just something what gets me, it’s…unless I find something more interesting, I don’t know, it’s just…I guess so, yeh.

Is there anything else you’d like to talk about?

Probably not; I like sex!

Thank you very much.


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Wild Rose Heritage and Arts is a community group which takes it's name from the area in which we are located - the valley ("den") of the wild rose ("Heb") -  Hebden Bridge which is in Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

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