We had the opportunity to interview English post-punk duo STOCKSNSKINS for an Artist Spotlight! Their electronic sound is sure to get you moving. They have an EP titled Free Speech being released in February. Check out what they had to say below!
How did you come to pursue music and how long have you been at it?
Ade – Stocksnskins is the first band I’ve played in, I remember playing my guitar to 'I see a red door and I want to paint it black' (The Rollling Stones' 'Paint It Black') in school assembly when I was about 12. I’ve always had guitars and dipped in and out of it. When Rich and I met musically I remember playing guitar and singing, he played bass it was an open mic night. Fairly soon after this stocksnskins started and we haven’t looked back. I much prefer to play bass nowadays but for live shows I leave that to Rich, he’s brilliant!
Rich – being considerably older than Ade I picked up a bass in late 1977 , informed by Punk as it were. That DIY ethos has stuck with me and then when portastudios became available began dabbling with drum machines and keyboards. I've been in bands in London in the '80s and early '90s and more recently in Dorset with Neil who now fronts Skaema …then as Ade says we tried open mics and... eureka!
Could you walk us through your process of writing music?
Ade – I write the lyrics, I don’t have any set pattern or routine for this, it just happens. I can be sitting at home have a thought of the first line, quickly go scribble it down then add to it, sometimes I write a whole track in half hour, sometimes it's over a few days. Some of the words and stories are things that I’ve seen, heard or experienced. Some come from opinions of whats going on at the time or at different stages of my life, some come from the issues we have to deal with as a country, some are just rants about how as a country the important things are over looked with a lack of facing up and trying to fix things.
Rich – purposefully avoiding laptops. I like the immediacy and simplicity of a bass and simple sequencer …sorry world I’ve got tons of tunes in the vaults!
What artists have inspired you?
There are a few artists that inspire us, Jah Wobble for his creative outputs, he’s got a good vibe going on, he has made some brilliant music and continues to produce solid records. Have to mention Sleaford Mods, just love their sound, their humour and energy, their message is pretty direct and what a simple set up for maximum output. Really liking anything alternative, a bit different and well away from the mainstream. Music has and is changing rapidly, its not all about the standard four piece anymore.
Do you have any favorite music gear that you love to use if so whats the story on them?
Our gear and set up is pretty simple, when we record or play live, we use portable hands on gear, kit we can easily carry round, jump on a bus or train with. Currently using a novation circuit, Roland JDXI, bass guitar and multi FX.
Can you describe the vibe at your live shows also what do you enjoy most about a venue when you do a show
Ha ha, it varies really, its probably a questions for people who come and see us, we’ve had some good vibes going on, love it when the crowd shout your lyrics back at you. We love a bit of crowd banter, but it depends who’s in front of you, we offer something different, something that some people haven’t heard before with relatable lyrics and energetic delivery, you do still sometimes get some odd looks but I guess they’re not ready for stocksnskins yet! Playing intimate gigs is great, when the crowd are close up, think that helps the energy and the vibe in the venue.
What is the one thing you want the public to know about your music?
We want the public to know that there is some brilliant alternative music out there, it's being played by bands that don’t fit the mainstream, just like us. Perhaps some need to move away from the standard stuff that seems to be shovelled at us constantly. What’s that saying... “this year I am going to see a band that I’ve not heard of before”.
Do you have any upcoming projects you would like your fans to know about?
Since we signed with Analogue Trash records Manchester we’ve released two EPs: Them Today and Dizzy Heights, pretty happy how they turned out and both have had some good reviews, which means a lot to us. We have a third EP coming out in February this year, Free Speech. Really pleased how this has turned out and looking forward to people hearing it. Got some nice gigs this month too, Thursday 17th January we headline at Chaplins Cellar bar in Boscombe, Friday 25thJanuary we play the Alexandra in Southampton and Monday 28th January we are playing a showcase at Madding Crowd in Bournemouth. All of our live shows and info go on social media find us @stocksnskins