“Bang, Bang Cherry” By Hook And The Twin.
To be completely honest, when I heard that electronic music was making a revival my heart sank faster than Beth Ditto in a lead canoe. In the past I have experienced great difficulty in relating to this form of musical expression, maybe I considered it a little bit cold and emotionless, or perhaps I felt the phallic symobolism, power and iconography of the thrusting guitar was being undermined by a lot of egg-headed ‘knob twiddlers’ and lets face it, a Casio CZ 1000 is a poor substitute for a penis….However, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at the quality of music produced by the new wave of electronic artists that have emerged over the last couple of years. On the whole it’s been innovative, hypnotic, edgy and a welcome counterpoint to the lumpen mutton fingered laddish guitar based pub rock that flooded the musical bathroom like so much effluence from a blocked toilet. Given the popularity of bands like The Arctic Monkeys, record companies appeared to be falling over themselves in the rush to sign up any old tosh on the basis that possession of a fashionable haircut framing features that resembled a cheeky northern ragamuffin would somehow produce “precocious, wry, street smart observational lyrics which perfectly captured the zietgiest” and were of course to be sung utilising their own distinctive regional dialect, thus making it more “real, man”. But “Eee by gum lad menny o’ these bands turned art ta be a complete ‘n utta load o’ old ‘orse knackers an’ donkey cock” but at least they answered the question, “what would The Arctic Monkeys sound like if they replaced Alex Turner with Orville The Duck ? ” (An improvement? Not much different maybe? ;) ) Doubtless if semi-automated, loop driven, electronic music takes off in the same way, record labels will once again develop the same scatter gun approach and randomly sign up anybody who can make something vaguely electronic go ‘bleep’. Heck, if you can use a microwave you might be in with the chance of a record deal!! But before that nightmare scenario rears it’s raddled, sweaty, grasping head, let’s check out a band who demonstrate what can be achieved with ideas, style and no small amount of talent.
Hook and the Twin have perfected a dark post-apocalyptic sound which is mesmerising, edgy and stomps about inside your head like an army of demented Cybermen on crack….and confirm if the machines are taking over, we are in safe hands. With two singles under their belt the hypnotic “Race For The Bone” and the impossible to resist “Bang Bang Cherry” Hook and The Twin are certainly a band whose star is in the ascendency and are definitely ones to watch…….and so after analysing their musical data we arranged an information sharing interface in order to extrapolate and assimilate intelligence with regard to their musical project…and here’s what happened
VP: By way of introduction for those who are new to Hook & The Twin who are you and were did the name come from
Hook & The Twin: We’re Tom and Marcus, we live in London and we make rhythmic songs out of drums and live looping.
The name comes from a painting by a friend. Of a butcher’s shop.
VP: What would you say informs and influences your sound…?
Hook & The Twin: We started Hook and the Twin listening to lots of 70s Krautrock, bands like Neu, Harmonia and Cluster. There were loads of rehearsals early on where we’d just spend hours hypnotising ourselves with those kinds of propulsive beats and endless layered up synths. But we’ve tried to mix that with more cut-up rhythms (we’re big fans of people like Sebastian and Oizo). And then we put songs over the top which I suppose are influenced by singers like David Bowie, David Byrne, Robert Wyatt and Bjork.
VP: Your second single ‘Bang Bang Cherry’ is hypnotic hook laden affair, but lyrically sounds a little surreal, what’s it all about?
Hook & The Twin: I’m not completely sure. Somewhere in there I think it’s about the difficulty of acknowledging a genuine terrible threat. Watching earthquakes on youtube.
VP: Is a debut album in the pipeline and if so when might it see the light of day?
Hook & The Twin: It’s moving towards the mouth of the pipeline. We haven’t started recording yet but we’re making plans. The songs are certainly there. I hope we’ll have started work by the end of the year.
VP: What have you got planned for the remainder of 2009?
Hook & The Twin: Lots of gigs, as much recording as we can fit in, and hopefully a few more performances of our live soundtrack to Metropolis. We’re also talking to a Japanese label about putting some music out there. And really hoping that will lead to a tour.
VP: What’s the biggest myth about being in a band?
Hook & The Twin: The glamour of “Backstage”. It’s almost always rancid and cramped. Apart from one venue in Lincoln where it’s in somebody’s bedroom.
VP: ‘Race for the Bone’, your previous single had a strangely hypnotic video, what the devils going on in it?
Hook & The Twin: William Hall, the director, had this idea to use ‘oobleck’, a mixture of corn flour and water. We spooned a huge batch of it onto a big tray and blasted the underneath with bass frequencies. If you get it right, the oobleck starts to ripple and then bits of it rear up and start writhing. The whole thing looks like a melting dancefloor.
VP: I’ve a feeling as well as releasing your own music you may well be asked to remix other artists, would that be something you’d be into and if so who would top your wish list ?
Hook & The Twin: We’ve actually done a couple in the last few weeks, one for My Tiger My Timing and one for Colourmusic. We love doing them. It can be much less pressured than working on your own material, much freer. I imagine it’s like the difference between a girl putting on her own makeup, and covering her little brother’s face in lipstick.
VP: What’s been your favourite album of 2009?
Hook & The Twin: Post War Years, The Greats and the Happenings.
VP: Sum your sound up in five words
Hook & The Twin: Drums Sticks Fire Fire Fire
Get the 7″ ‘Bang Bang Cherry’ single here
Or digital download here
“Band Bang Cherry” By Hook And The Twin
“Race For The Bone” By Hook And The Twin