“Record companies need to risk more on projects they don’t necessarily think will be successful” – An interview with Husky Loops

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Fresh from the release of their most successful hit to date ‘Everytime I Run’, ft. MEI, Count Counsellor, I chatted to the Italians Pietro, Danio and Tommaso of Husky Loops. We discussed everything from the UK music scene, FIFA 18, pre-gig nerves, Mongolian throat singing and choking on hot dogs.

Being from Italy, what were the main factors in you wanting to make the move to the UK and make music here rather than Italy?

Danio: It was the fish and chips…

Pietro: Yes, we are really into the food here.

Is the food back home not that good then? I thought Italy was known for its good food?

P: No, nothing beats jacket potato.

Tommaso: You know the steak pies? How can you top that?

P:  Yeah, we are very good at faking [that]we like our food. See, when a tourist comes here we say we really like our food but when alone, we just can’t be bothered to make our food.

T: But really, there wasn’t that much opportunity to make it in the music scene there for us so that was the big reason. I would say the music scene in Italy has changed since we left 6 or 7 years ago but it changed so quickly. I would say in our world we could have been a band in Italy playing shows but it would never have worked out as a career there. There are far more people here that can help us get where we want to be.

What music did you enjoy when you were younger? Did you listen to the type of music you create now?

P: It was very much phases, different all of the time. We all very much liked the UK rock scene and it was big over here [in Italy].

T: I started playing music because of The Beetles and then the indie-rock scene came and bands like Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes were very popular.

D: I was into a lot of US music as well as Mongolian throat singing. It’s very hard, people have died you know? I really liked it, [I] reached the astral planes and then the nirvana where I was told to play the drums (laughs).

It’s quite fair to say your music is unique- how would you describe your sound in 3 words?

P: Repetitive, intermit[tent], wow.

And how exactly did you decide on the name ‘Husky Loops’?

P: He (pointing to Tommaso) was choking on a hot dog and was trying to say, what was it? Oh, “I really like fruity loops,” and it came out as Husky Loops.

Right now, who would you say your musical influences are on the music you write?

T: Okay I’ll go with grime, so maybe like Skepta?

P: It varies a lot but both Solange and Frank Ocean.

Now that we have had a taste of some releases and an EP, can we expect a debut album?

P: We aren’t really writing anything for an album… that doesn’t mean one won’t ever come out.

When it comes to writing new material, do you write from you own experiences or take inspirations from elsewhere?

P: Well, we get bored easily, so we don’t like doing the same material over and over again. We always want to try to be new. It’s a mixture of us wanting to always invent ourselves in a new way and also us getting bored. Not bored in a bad way but bored of playing the same sorts of stuff over and over again.

How do you feel about the newest single Everytime I Run’ being used in FIFA18?

T: It’s crazy.

P: So crazy.

How did it come about?

P:  It’s pretty funny, I’m telling this story to everyone – We recorded that song and some friends jumped onto it. It was something we did for fun and really meant to just have as a vinyl with an extra hip-hop beat. We sent out that vinyl version to a few people, then one was like “we want that one for FIFA”.

T: The takes for that song were taken in the afternoon that England was playing Sweden, it was recorded in half time of the game after a few drinks.

Have you felt an influx of new fans as a result of the song being on there?

P: I think we got a lot of new fans as a result, all of the FIFA people that listen to that kind of music have come and started commenting on our material.

T: Its not just some either, it’s a lot of people. Even those who just buy the game and happened to hear the song are still coming through and commenting on it.

P: Not just a few either, a lot.

When it comes to live performances, what do you like to do to stand out to those watching?

P: We try very hard but struggle (laughs), we [are]still working with a one-man crew, it’s just pedals and machines and it’s light shows being controlled by instruments. Everything you see happens on stage, the lights and everything come from what we play. We don’t necessarily make it easier for ourselves by say, adding new members on stage or improving a crew, we just enjoy performing it ourselves. I think people find it interesting when everything they see and hear comes from the musicians on the stage. I don’t particularly like the whole backing track thing. I get why pop people use them but today a lot of bands today use them all the time and I get it, it sounds great but no, we’re not into it, we like to play everything on stages. We don’t just want to be considered a rock band but we like to carry the ‘band’ aspect of performing.

D: From what you see us do both sonically and visually, it’s happening on that stage.

How do you deal with pre-gig nerves, if you still get that?

T: The last time I can think of having pre-gig nerves was when we played some huge shows with Placebo. It was amazing but we had never done anything like that before to that scale. So playing Brixton Academy or the Motorpoint arena to 5-6000 fans, it was really new.

D: Its very hard for me to say when I get nervous. I tend to react really sleepily. I’m always sleepy before a show, I think that’s how I deal with it – that Placebo show I was yawning so much and that’s a very strange way but it’s how I deal with it.

P: See I don’t get nervous at all but I think I get more nervous with small shows. See at Brixton Academy I felt so comfortable, after so many shows with the same crew and same set making everything around you always feel and sound so perfect it’s almost like nothing can go wrong. So you have no pressure of any exchanging with fans as the stage is so big but in small gigs everything can go wrong.

D: Your ego gets so boosted when you’re in a situation where you know people are there to see you and I think that’s when it gets harder.

Any pre-gig rituals?

P: Yeah, we towel each other, he (pointing at Tommaso) gets towelled the most. It’s great, hurts though.

If you could tour with anybody who would it be?

P: I think it would be Flying Lotus.

T: Brockhampton too.

D: I was going to say Brockhampton.

If you could claim the rights to any song already written which song would it be?

P: If I was thinking about the money I’d choose ‘Rocket Man’, but also because it’s a great fucking song you know.

T: Also the groove and bassline has been used by so many people you’d make a fortune from that anyway.

Where do you see yourselves in 5 year’s time?

P: [It’s] very hard to tell you know, because we have a lot of different goals. But venue wise I do really think, and I know it sounds arrogant but I do mean it, I think if we sound the same in 5 years’ time we should be playing to a lot of people, [in]arenas.

When it comes to recording, is recording done live or through computers?

P: It’s done live yeah, I think you know that’s why it’s known that we like to dissociate from being a rock band whilst still being called a band because the sounds we like to make can be made live in a room without computers and also played live [on]a stage the same way.

D: I think it’s very easy to get inspired by contemporary ways of making music and then we just find our own way aka struggle, to recreate that but in a room with more traditional instruments. There is a lot of potential of what you can do with instruments – its infinite what you can do with drums, guitar and bass. Just look at it with a fresh face and you can come up with something very new.

So finally, you have been part of the UK music scene for a while now, is it on the rise or is it declining?

P: Oooh, this is a tough question. I think that the record company need to risk more on projects they don’t necessarily think will be successful [commercially]but I do believe we as a generation have a very short attention span and we get bored of things easily and bands always need to change. So I don’t just think it’s the industries’ fault but a lot of factors. It’s hard to adapt, [but]I do think the scene will find a balance in a few years.

Here are the other tour dates for Husky Loops, and see below for the Fifa soundtrack single ‘Everytime I Run’.

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3rd year Psychology student at UoS. I Hate my degree, love music.

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