How does a band’s sound develop? While some bands go out of there way to cultivate a particular sound, more are simply a product of their influences and those musicians who inspire them to play in a certain way. Perhaps the most intriguing bands are those who each bring their own sound and ideas to the proceedings, bands where the guitarist is pulling the band one way, and the rhythm section in another. These bands are able to fuse different genres and ideas and create something truly unique, these are the bands who are moving music forward.
Hackney based, doom-pop quartet Giant Burger, feature just one quote about their music on their website, “that’s the worst band I’ve ever heard” from the reliable source of a bloke outside The New Cross Inn. That self-deprecation and ability to laugh at themselves is an important part of a band, who seem keen to not be seen as taking this whole music lark too seriously. Step away from that playing down of expectations though, and you’ll discover a band who are more talented than they think they are; anxious riffing, powerful driving drum beats and a perfectly judged daft streak. Giant Burger take pop songs and spin them through a chaotic blur of anger and noise, creating something fresh, uncomplicated and thrilling.
A band who’s influences are diverse and varied, Giant Burger have today shared with us a mixtape of the songs that inspire the way they play their instruments. Whether it’s African rhythms of Youssou N’Dour, the angry metal-tinged guitar playing of Atari Teenager Riot, or the sheer hook-laden pop of Hot Chocolate – these are the sounds that make Giant Burger sound like the intriguing melting pot of musical ideas that they are.
1. Turbonegro – Get It On
2. Atari Teenage Riot – Sick To Death
Joel: “The Turbonegro song has that extremely hot freedom sound that I have always wanted every band I’ve played in to have. The ATR song has the will to differ, the anger and the courage. And Hanin Elias.”
3. System Of A Down – DDevil
Rosie: “I had some drum lessons at school when I was a teenager and I liked things heavy. I was into this wave of brand new mixed up experimental metal – uh yes it was Nu Metal!! – that was emerging. This song is wild, it’s fun, it’s surprising, it’s bouncy and jumpy and energetic and political. System, I will always love you.”
4. Youssou N’dour – Mame Bamba
Rosie: “I got a job in The Gambia in West Africa when I was 22. Everyone in the Gambia is crazy for Youssou Ndou as he sings partly in Wolof, which is one of the main two tribes in the country. Every time I got in a taxi or had a drink in a cafe this song was playing. I found it supremely annoying. I hadn’t really been exposed to this level of insanely happy drumming before and my brain couldn’t handle it. I could never hope to be this good at drumming, but I like to think I sometimes incorporate an essence of this irritating joyfulness into my playing!”
5. Baxter Dury – Hotel In Brixton
Owain: “I think a lot of the things that influence me come in reverse, or, I guess, more accurately, I don’t quite realise I’m plagiarising someone until afterwards. However as soon as I heard Baxter Dury’s first two albums I was given a sort of misguided confidence in my singing, he has a mopey, dry style to his voice that made me think; “Oh, you can be different”. It was his third album Happy Soup released in 2011 though, completely different in style to its predecessors, that gave me a bit more keyboard confidence, particularly seeing him live at a small gig at the Slaughtered Lamb. However I think the “influence” of his music has to – unfortunately – go through a filter of my “ability”, and therefore might be difficult to detect… although of our songs I think Cryphone is the one that – to me – sounds the most Baxter Dury-like, although that’s in no way down to anything I contributed to it, so I think that’s just a coincidence.”
6. Colourmusic – You For Leaving Me
Owain: “Colourmusic were one of those bands from the heyday of discovering things via MySpace, I’d spend many happy hours clicking on the friends of bands to see where I’d wind up… In fact, via a long-winded convoluted story MySpace is responsible for me being in this band. Thanks Tom! Anyway… The first Colourmusic LP was this twee, playful, silly affair (it’s also undoubtedly one of my favourite albums) and that definitely influenced me and what “rock” music could be, but their sophomore record My _____ Is Pink found them turning into this explosive, apocalyptic group – when I saw them live they had already adopted this persona but were still playing the twee songs, but through a chaotic funnel of noise, it was incredible – and so I guess somewhere between the two albums sits me, I want to rock out, I wish I had the chutzpah to be that kind of person (though I’m also grateful to not be a posturing numpty) whilst at the same time I’m probably rather self-effacing so want everything to be pushed through the safety net of being “tongue in cheek” therefore my limited musical skills can be excused. I think this Colourmusic song straddles that line.”
Oli: “Ok- (imagine me talking) ‘Everyone’s a Winner because they found a great riff and exploited it as much as they could and loaded all the effects they could squeeze into it which I always try to do with my parts. Masterpiece because they loaded all the playing and ideas they could into one really short punk song which I also try and do, as does the rest of the band.”
Giant Burger Forever is out in October via Odd Box Records. Click HERE to keep up to date with everything Giant Burger related.