- Jonny Ensall
- 29 January 2009
Popolo - Or Optimism
Existing under the slightly dubious banner of math-pop, Popolo are a Dundee outfit who make tight, methodical, indie-dance in between studying at various Scottish universities. Having successfully avoided both their coursework for the last year, and their awful first band name Hell Fabulous ("we thought it was street"), they settled on Popolo in 2008 and have been gigging and recording ever since. Guitarist Tom Ogden tells how the band joined forces, and how they secured David Shrigley to do their artwork (no, really).
The band is quite young, when did you all come together?
Glen the bass player, Robbie the other guitarist and myself went to school together. They were in the year above, but we still occasionally played music. Matthew, the drummer, I knew through a friend. I think we all assumed that when we went to university we'd find plenty of other people who wanted to make music as well, and that didn't happen. Last year I saw them again and we just got back into it.
And what's in store now you that you're reunited?
We're working towards an E.P., recording with producer Robin Sutherland who did out last two songs and has also worked with lots of other great people like Avast and Stapleton. It'll be good to finally have something to give out at gigs.
You're a guitar band primarily, but the songs sound like they are influenced by electronic music. Have you got any plans to go digital?
Absolutely. I don't really listen to a lot of rock music, I really like electronic music and the other lads do as well. James Holden especially is a big influence. Pretty much every new song that's being written at the moment has some element of synth in it and I think we're really going to try and push that when we come to recording.
Errors mentioned you as a favourite band on their Clash tour diary recently. Do you want to mention anyone?
Would it be terrible if I said Y'all Is Fantasy Island? [See Exposure: 22 January 2009.]
No, no it wouldn't.
OK, Y'all Is Fantasy Island. We played a gig with them the other week and they were really great.
Amazingly, you managed to persuade David Shrigley to design your band artwork. Was that a chance encounter?
He saw us play in Glasgow and I just started speaking to him afterwards. I e-mailed him and, yeah, he was good enough to draw for us, which is a really, really, really big thing. I don't think any of us thought that anything would come of it.
Popolo play Sick Note at Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh on 29 Jan and The Captain's Rest, Glasgow on 30 Jan.