Aiming to avoid the politics behind music, rising London duo Punkband are here to rip up the rule book, stir things up and have nothing short of a good, "mental" time.
Set to play their debut live show in London on 18th August, the pair and their instinct driven brand of proper, raucous punk is set to them soar in 2021.
As they share their new single, 'Red Rag to a Bull', we caught up with Toby Ergatoudis to talk Punkband's creative process, excitement for live shows & plans for the remainder of 2021.
Tell us a bit about Punkband and your musical journey so far?
We’ve known each other for years and we've always listened to bands like Joy Division, Sham 69 and Sleaford Mods to name a few. One night after a few beers and watching the film The filth and the fury we figured why not try and make a track ourselves. Alex plays a tonne of instruments, I’m a loud cunt and we ended up surprisingly happy with the result. Shit or Bust got a decent reception, so we decided to form a band and see what happens.
Your new single has just dropped, talk us through ‘Red Rag to a Bull’ - how long have you been sitting on it and where did the influence behind it come from?
All of our tracks come together quite quickly. We can get about 90% of a track hammered out in one evening and we don’t really like to sit on them for too long - we think in today’s music scene you need to keep a pretty constant stream of new music coming out or people just lose interest. Red Rag to a Bull was just us taking out our frustrations at spending a year in lockdown to be honest. It’s been a shite year all round but we’ve got some gigs in the diary now so things are looking up.
Would you say it’s a strong representation of what’s to come from you in the future?
Not really, we want all our new tracks to sound pretty different to the one before. The next tune we’ve got lined up is a fucking headbanger, all we’ll say is it will be completely different. We try to change it up because we’ll get bored otherwise.
What does the creative process look like for you guys, do your songs follow a similar structure or is it different with every track you work on?
We usually get blackout drunk in the studio and then Alex will start with a riff or a few chords, and we’ll build from there. All the best music was made while the artists were under the influence and we think it’d be doing them a disservice if we tried to change the formula.
What would the dream Punkband visuals look like? Any particular artist/director you’d love to work with?
We’d like to do some collabs with some artists but not giving out any teasers just yet. If Damien Hurst wants to send us some art we’d be more than happy to accept. Or anyone who reaches a high Christie’s auction value, we wouldn’t be offended.
You’ve got your first ever headline show coming up in August - how are you feeling about that? Excited/nervous/both?
We can’t fucking wait. We’ve been rehearsing for some months now and it’s sounding biblical. I highly recommend buying a ticket or just doing a direct donation to Alex's Paypal.
Alex has been in a few bands before so he’s used to being in front of a crowd but it’s all new ground for me. If I don't like it my old boss said I can have my job back at Tesco’s anyway, so we’re golden.
You’re from London - who are some of your favourite fellow upcoming artists in the city?
Hotel Lux are great, Black Midi, HMLTD to name a few
What’s the plan for the rest of 2021? Any surprises in store?
We’re aiming to get at least 3 more tracks out before the year ends and do a video for each. Covid has slowed the whole process down somewhat, but things are finally ramping up again. We really want to play live as much as possible this year too