Baby Strange - INTERVIEW
4 years on from their debut album 'Want It Need It', Glasgow's Baby Strange are returning just in time, riding the new Punk wave that has seen acts like IDLES and Fontaines D.C. enter the mainstream. However, there is a unique edge to the Scottish trio that sets them apart from the host of underground Punk acts that are beginning to stake a name for themselves. Whether it is their almost relentless angst that pours from their music or perhaps the teeth-gritting swagger of the vocal delivery, their music is instantly recognisable as Baby Strange. As they gear up for their biggest tour to date as well as their second record, they are certainly one to watch out for in 2021! We caught up with them deep in lockdown to see what they have in store.
"Our newer stuff feels way more angular, it’s attention-grabbing and even more instant than before"
How do you feel you have developed since your first album and what did you learn from releasing that first record?
"We’ve come on a long way since our debut. We’re way more confident as players now, our vision is stronger and the songs we’re writing now are a cut above. I love our first album, it means a lot to me, but our new stuff is really exciting to me. I think that’s natural to be most excited about your most recent work though. Since releasing our first album we’ve learned: Don’t get too ahead of yourself, take everything as it comes and always go with your gut".
Has it frustrated you not being able to release a second album yet? And what is the reason the second record hasn't arrived?
"At times it does get frustrating yeah. I’m glad we’ve waited though, the new stuff we’re sitting on is the best stuff we’ve ever done. We’ve recorded a bunch of stuff over the past couple of years that’s never seen the light of day. You just know when something’s working and when it’s not. On top of that, we parted ways with our label, management and agent - that slowed things down for us but we’re back with an amazing team around us, we’re very lucky to have a bunch of people working with us that believe in the music we’re making. It’s rare to find".
What have you been up to in lockdown? Have you found it hard to write and stay motivated?
"The start of lockdown was weird, I was struggling to adjust but after a month or so I found myself writing more than I’ve ever written before. Not having anything to do all day made me open up my mind and think about things that trigger interesting songs. A lot has happened for the band during lockdown. We singed a record deal with Swedish label Icons Creating Evil Art and started working with our manager Gavin Harry at Eighty4 Music, which has been a breath of fresh air for us. When you’ve been a band for 8 years you start to wonder if anyone still gives a fuck - well it turns out they do".
Can you tell us what inspired the new single ‘More! More! More!’?
"I actually wrote that track sitting listening to my neighbours have a massive party, the tunes were terrible and I could hear them all shouting over each other. It’s about people that never want to grow up, it’s the same shit parties week in, week out. I wish my walls were thicker!"
The track has been received really well across the board and even made it onto the Champions League highlights! Do you think the world is wanting some rebellious angst-filled music more than ever right now?
"We’ve been blown away by the response to the track! Hearing it on the Champions League was nuts. To be honest, I think people will always steer towards something that’s filled with angst. Letting go and getting some sort of release is an amazing feeling, especially through music. This year has been a bit of a shit show and I’d hope that our music helped a few people out there to forget about everything that’s going on, even if just for a minute".
It certainly does feel like their latest release was perfectly timed. Despite being a trio, the no-nonsense single is littered with instrumental nuances to create a deeply layered punk atmosphere that perfectly matches the feeling of the country at the moment. However, in all their angst and ferocity they still never fail to conjure an infectious chorus that lingers long in your head and instigates an almost primal urge to sing along.
Looking forward how do you think your sound is changing?
"Our newer stuff feels way more angular, it’s attention-grabbing and even more instant than before. The lyrics have more depth and I’m trying to push myself out of my comfort zone when it comes to my voice. Our second album is a step forward".
After your 2017 EP and tracks like ‘Job In The City’ do you feel you are becoming more politicised and socially active in your lyrics?
"To an extent, yeah. For example, our song Viewpoint is about the massive drug problem in Glasgow - I’m mostly referring to the heroin problem in North Glasgow. I know about this problem because it’s where I was born, I can remember seeing needles on the ground when I was out playing in Springburn as a child. I wanted there to be some sort of solution and I think fix rooms are the start of that. That’s what Viewpoint is about".
How are you looking forward to your 2021 tour and do you think the shows will feel any different (for better or for worse) post-lockdown?
"We’ve missed playing live so much. It’s crucial for a band like us. I think now that there’s a vaccine people’s minds will start to ease when live music does open back up, I know it definitely made me feel more relaxed as someone that loves going to see live music".
What plans do you have for 2021 apart from the tour?
"We have a lot of big plans for 2021. Our second album being one of them. We also have some more tour dates to announce that we’re very excited about".
Listen to their new single among our favourite songs from the year!!