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Squid - Bright Green Field (Album Review)

Tuesday, 11 May 2021 Written by Matty Pywell

Photo: Holly Whitaker

Squid are part of a wave of British bands—alongside such outfits as Black Midi and Black Country, New Road—who have a number of tags swirling above their heads, from post-punk to post-rock. Yet, and this is crucial, their music mostly does away with anything approximating a pigeonhole related to genre.

However, one thing that unites these bands is their emergence around the time of Brexit. As a result, they represent a frustrated and fatigued part of society, disillusioned with government policy and finding reasons for optimism hard to come by.

Against that backdrop Squid have made a name for themselves over the past few years with an exciting mix of unorthodox experimentation and awkward anthems.

The title of their debut LP, ‘Bright Green Field’, represents a lie—an advertisement for a lush and thriving society when Squid are actually more interested in dystopias—and it’s one of many paradoxes within the album.

One song that sets out their vision in full clarity is the maximalist squall of Narrator, which runs to more than eight minutes and features Martha Skye Murphy. As exemplified by the accompanying music video, it’s a portrayal of a sprawling, fractured landscape.

With skittish guitar riffs and angular, evolving rhythms it explores control and how much agency we actually have over our own thoughts and roles in life. Squid’s drummer-vocalist Ollie Judge is so certain of his own direction, while Martha aches to break from any such control. 

The band have a more interpretative approach to displaying their politics, and the substance behind many phrases and observations is left to the imagination. Squid guide our hands towards themes rather than making direct statements. 

Global Groove, with its ceremonial drumming style, signals the start of monotonous working cycles, while spectacle is made of war on the TV. The band feel forced to dance to the 9-5 beat of capitalism and it’s their most damning condemnation. ‘Bright Green Field’ is an account of our cruel, absurd world.

Squid Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Wed May 19 2021 - FALMOUTH Cornish Bank
Thu May 20 2021 - TOTNES St Marys
Sat May 22 2021 - BRISTOL Cube Microplex
Tue May 25 2021 - EDINBURGH Summerhall
Wed May 26 2021 - CHIPPENHAM Old Road Tavern
Fri May 28 2021 - HULL New Adelphi Club
Tue June 01 2021 - SHEFFIELD Leadmill
Thu June 03 2021 - MANCHESTER Stoller Hall
Sat June 05 2021 - LONDON Silver Building
Mon June 07 2021 - NORWICH Halls
Wed June 09 2021 - BEXHILL ON SEA De La Warr Pavilion
Sat June 12 2021 - MARGATE Cliftonville Hall
Tue June 15 2021 - OXFORD Art Bar (Bullingdon)
Mon June 21 2021 - BRIGHTON Chalk
Mon July 12 2021 - BRIGHTON Chalk
Tue July 13 2021 - SOUTHAMPTON Joiners
Wed July 14 2021 - OXFORD Bullingdon
Thu July 15 2021 - LONDON Scala
Sat July 17 2021 - MANCHESTER White Hotel
Sun July 18 2021 - HEBDEN BRIDGE Trades Club
Mon July 19 2021 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE Cluny
Tue July 20 2021 - EDINBURGH Summerhall
Wed July 21 2021 - YORK Crescent
Mon July 26 2021 - BIRMINGHAM Castle and Falcon
Tue July 27 2021 - BEDFORD Bedford Esquires
Tue September 07 2021 - BRIGHTON Concorde 2
Thu September 09 2021 - BRISTOL Marble Factory
Fri September 10 2021 - MANCHESTER Albert Hall
Thu September 23 2021 - LONDON Printworks
Fri September 24 2021 - BIRMINGHAM Crossing
Sat September 25 2021 - NOTTINGHAM Rock City
Mon September 27 2021 - NEWCASTLE Newcastle University Students Union
Tue September 28 2021 - GLASGOW SWG3 TV Studio
Wed September 29 2021 - BELFAST Empire Music Hall
Thu September 30 2021 - DUBLIN Button Factory
Sun October 03 2021 - CARDIFF Tramshed
Mon October 04 2021 - SOUTHAMPTON 1865
Tue October 05 2021 - EXETER Exeter Phoenix

Compare & Buy Squid Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

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