Releasing and promoting music during a pandemic is tough, but 5-piece band Squid have found significant success over the past year. With their debut album Bright Green Field out on May 7th, I got to ask this wonderful band a few questions about their past, the album, and what to expect in the near future. If you’re a fan of post-punk tracks, Squid are ones to look out for. And, if not, read along anyways – you might just discover your new favourite band!
Where did the name Squid come from?
At the time we decided the band would need a name we were listening to a lot of bands with monosyllabic names – like Beak, Can, Neu. I think we thought it didn’t really matter too much what we called the band because we didn’t expect things to go this far.
What has been the proudest moment of your career so far?
Finishing Bright Green Field feels like something we’re all really proud of. We felt incredibly lucky to get it all recorded without having to compromise how ambitious we wanted it to be as a project, especially while so many other things that we were planning on doing were being cancelled or pushed back. Making an album is a huge milestone for us and we’re excited for its release.
Your debut album Bright Green Field is due out this May – is there a particular track you are most excited for fans to hear?
There are a few moments on the album that will surprise people. ‘Global Groove’ is one we took a slightly different approach to writing and has ended up being one of our favourites.
What has it been like promoting and releasing music throughout the past year?
It’s been strange not having that live feedback we had in the past when we’ve released things and then played them at shows but it’s always exciting to release new things.
Has your songwriting changed in any way since the release of your debut EP Town Centre? Is there anything you did differently when writing Bright Green Field?
In terms of how we initially generate ideas and tracks, no. We still have a process of improvising and jamming small ideas as a group until they mould bit by bit into something we love (or something we hate in which case we’ll chuck it out). However, we were able to take much more time than normal with Bright Green Field which may not have been possible if we were still touring until recording started. It meant we could experiment with scoring parts for new players, try out new structures and arrangements and explore sound design ideas. We wanted Bright Green Field to be our most ambitious project to date and feel like one piece of art, and we worked really hard on trying to achieve that.
What has the response been like for ‘Narrator’ so far?
‘Narrator’ has been a really nice one to watch evolve. I think when we first heard Martha doing takes of the last section we all had this moment after it fell silent when we all looked at each other and thought ‘woah’. It seems like lots of people have felt that since it’s been released too. We feel super grateful to all the people that have listened to it already or played it on the radio. We’re looking forward to playing it at some shows when we’re allowed.
What were your inspirations behind writing Bright Green Field?
It’s not always easy to answer that fully; between the five of us, who have distinct ideas and personalities, and over the whole album, there’s an endless list of inspirations, most of which we haven’t even talked about. There’s a few themes, concepts and ideas that we were all really interested in when we were writing together. We had quite a lot of discussions about mapping physical space with audio, cyberspace, urbanity and science-fiction literature. They all feel like quite important themes in the music and lyrics.
Your live shows sadly got cancelled last year – what can we expect from you guys in the near future?
We’re feeling cautiously optimistic about being able to play some shows this summer. We’ve rescheduled our tours that got cancelled so fingers crossed they’ll be able to go ahead and we’ll be really busy over the next few months. We’ve also been writing new ideas recently so we’re looking forward to trying out some brand-new things at shows too.
When gigs can go ahead safely again, where will you be first: watching a gig, or playing one?
Our brilliant agent and managers have done an amazing job of rescheduling the tours from last year so we pretty much plan to be out touring pretty solidly as soon as we can, so I imagine we’ll be playing shows first. One of the nice things about what we do though is that there’s often opportunities to see other artists play which we’ve all been missing.
How would you sum up Bright Green Field in one sentence?
The REAL ending of Lost.
Check out ‘Paddling’ from the upcoming album below, and buy tickets for their tour here.