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Who Are You?: We chat to Squid

Within the pages of our print and online magazine lies a section of great importance. Titled ‘Who Are You?’, we stick our ear to the ground and introduce you to the sounds that are making people whisper up and down the country. Hopefully, some time in the near future, they’ll become the regulars on your Radio Stations, Spotify lists and gig listings! The section only allows for a couple of questions to be printed, so today we bring you the full introduction to one of our favourite new artists. In Issue Eighteen we sent over the basics to Squid. Find the key details below.

Can you tell us who you are, where you’re from and about the music you make?

Our band’s called Squid and we formed it in Brighton almost 2 years ago, but we’re all originally from different areas of the country. Laurie, Ollie and Me (Louis) are from the West Country. Arthur and Anton are from London and Norfolk, but when we were all living in Brighton, there was a lot of great electronic and heavier guitar music around us which we heard through friends playing in bands and lots of people DJing around town. The result of all this different stuff has been the music we now make, which is a big bubbly pot of different ideas.

What’s special about where you’re from? Has it inspired your music?

There’s definitely something special about forming a band somewhere like Brighton, which is a relatively small city that’s jammed with loads of really great venues. Seeing all the dedication and hard work that our friends put into their music through playing around the city is always great to see and so many bands that we love seeing in Brighton have inspired us to do the same but we have been a bit lazier with gigs until more recently. Having a good community of mates to come to our gigs in our early stages was really important to get us going with confidence. A lot of our friends that do music are smashing it at the moment which encourages us to keep playing and recording new stuff as much as humanly and financially possible.

How did you find each other?

Me and Ollie met through a mutual friend from Bristol and used to make some electronic music together in each other’s bedrooms when we moved to Brighton. Three of us were also studying music at the University so luckily we had a lot of time to be working out the original ideas together, like who would play what and how many effects can we put each sound through before it sounds really bad. Back then it was musically very different, you can definitely hear that on our debut EP Lino. In retrospect we didn’t yet have the focus that we have today, but it’s amazing to go back and listen to the ideas we had and have a physical artifact that marks the starting point of Squid. It was only when Laurie joined us that we realised that we’d actually formed the band we are at the moment. Now we live apart, we take a lot of trains between London and Brighton and keep talk about buying a van. Sponsor us VW.

Who Are You?

In Issue Eighteen of So Young

What led you to form a band? A particular happening or mutual love for a record or sound?

The two main things we had were good mates and lots of free time; we had people to jam with and people to come and watch us. The five of us have come together with a mutual love for taking experimental approaches to our instrumentation and our songs. We’ve experimented with different ways of writing, using tape effects, feedback loops and trying to avoid one consistent style across all our songs. We started off with a droney, more improvised sound which certainly faded over time but snippets of this Squid era definitely find their way back into our current songs. Because of this, sometimes we write something that we all agree ‘sounds like the old Squid’.

Can you tell us something that you collectively really love?

We collectively, definitely, really love Carl from Rock Bottom which is his rehearsal space that we always go to. We’d been looking for somewhere that was gonna work between Brighton and London. Carl came through! Plus he’s always there with drumsticks for Ollie and spare bits when we rehearse at his place every time. He also looks like Chris Guest from Spinal Tap, has a dog and lots of nice amps that go to 11.

Can you tell us something that you collectively hate?

Not having our own studio and rehearsal space.

Can you tell us the story behind one of your songs?

Let’s talk about Norovirus… Leeds Norovirus. One of our forthcoming singles has a lot to do with the time we all went to Leeds and Arthur had Norovirus but didn’t know. 2 out of 5 Squid boys were infected whilst the rest of us lay dormant. There was lots of moaning, groaning and lying on the floor in the studio, but our producer Tom Orrell at the Nave was very good at cracking on with the session and pretending we weren’t.

What can we be excited for (from you) over the next 12 months?

For those that can make it to our gig at Butlin’s for Rockaway Beach in January: that one is going to be certainly great, we’re stoked for the lineup. We’ve also joked about all the activities that we’re going to engage in, with the Rapids and wrestling. A tour later this year is likely, which will be full to the brim with yoga, matcha green tea and daily band therapy sessions.

Squid have recently released ‘The dial’ via Speed Underground and have just been announced as part of The Great Escape Festival’s ‘First Fifty’. Tickets here.

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