Interview by Paul Monkhouse for MPM
You’ll never forget the first time you see or hear Square Wild. The young four piece from Manchester are a striking outfit, both visually and musically, each member of the band bringing their own disparate style into a mix that just, somehow, works.
Hard rock, psychodelia, funk, soul and indie elements interweave into one genre defying whole that is uniquely their own.
Whilst some might find this inability to pigeonhole the band an issue, it’s one that they embrace, their individuality not only making them stand out from the crowd but also crossing multiple fan bases and embracing as many people as possible.
A rapidly growing profile saw the band asked to play on the main stage of the much loved Cambridge Rock Festival last year and from there things continued to blossom after a set that was one of the best received of the weekend.
The band seem to back creativity on all levels, actively involving themselves on a grassroots and personal level in every aspect of what they do. From the writing and recording of their music through to their very individual look and onto the graphic design, everything is done inhouse, away from the prying eyes and control of outside forces.
There’s a beating heart and a sharp mind that runs through Square Wild that gives an air of danger and unpredictability; the quartet as equally active in matters of societal inequality as in their music and this translates, not in a preachy way, but in an ethos that floods from the stage in a way that Rage Against The Machine have shown in the past.
Lead vocalist Lucy Shevchuk explains what they’ve been doing whilst plans of conquering the music world have been sidelined somewhat.
First off, and most importantly: How are you doing?
OK! The band have had quite a stressful time as our bassist left during lockdown and we couldn’t practice. But it’s been OK, trying to practice from home more and our new bassist has been on it with getting up to date with the set!
How have you been keeping yourself busy?
We largely have been writing new material and working on getting our new bassist up to date. I have taught myself how to record through reaper, bought a professional recording set up and started learning bass.
Have you been doing any online live shows or seen any good ones?
I’ve seen a few dotted about but, it’s hard to engage when it’s through a screen. I’m unsure they work.
Have you had to change your way of writing material?
Apart from not jamming something out in real time with the band, no. Largely I write a melody and guitar part with lyrics and send that over to the band anyway. So, nothing has changed there!
Do you keep in touch with your fellow bandmates / other musicians much?
Yes! It’s been constant. I’ve also been able to play at open mics.
What plans have you had to change this year?
We were booked for a few festivals which have been cancelled and had gigs cancelled. We also are unsure about when to release a single without being able to gig to support it.
What do you think of the social distancing gigs or the thought of drive-in gigs?
I think it’s just what we are going to have to put up with. Although gigs for me have always been about the music AND the atmosphere. Sit down gigs at limited capacity don’t have the same appeal.
How do you think the music industry will have changed after this period of lockdown?
I think it’s going to really struggle. For one, music venues are dropping left right and center, so live shows will be few and far between. A lot of artists are actually giving up, with others embracing the change and focusing on social content like video. I’m unsure it will ever be the same again.
What plans have you got for when the isolation finishes and gigs start back up again?
We’re focusing on mainly releasing tracks and trying to apply for gigs with bigger audiences and sending our music to labels.
How can people support you during this time?
The support we need is people actively sharing and listening to our releases. That’s all anyone can do right now. We might also set up a Patreon account so some subscribers would be amazing!
can do right now. We might also set up a Patreon account so some subscribers would be amazing!