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Chickenhawk

Ben Patashnik
Ben Patashnik 1 November 2010 at 13.00

They might be the most terrifyingly exciting band to have come out of Leeds in ages, but they “wouldn’t bum a dog to get publicity.” So we made them BOTW anyway.

The Leeds terror-riffers known as Chickenhawk have been worrying us for a while, but with the release of new album 'Modern Bodies' they've gone from being weirdos with a penchant for making a racket to one of the UK's finest new bands.

What we love most about them is that while they have all the components of, well, pretty much every single good band in the world - hefty guitars, angry vocals, buckets of energy - and twist them into something viciously new. Check out our streams of 'Son Of CERN' and 'Scorpieau' below, as well as the exclusive video of ‘Son Of CERN’.


Chickenhawk - 'Son Of Cern' by RockSoundMagazine

Don't take our word for it: here's a Q+A with the band...

Introduce yourselves: who's in the band and what do you do?
"Chickenhawk are 4 dysfunctional individuals who manage to operate functionally as a collective. Paul does vocals and plays guitar, Robert plays guitar, Ryan plays bass, and Matthew plays drums."

When was your first gig and what was it like?
"Our first gig was the first date of a UK tour back in January 2005 It was in Brixton at a venue called The Windmill. We were only a three-piece then and were probably really crap. We did wear masks and hats though, that probably increased our cool factor. We were defintiely throwing ourselves in at the deep end."

Name three albums that made you want to be in a band...
"Melvins - 'Houdini' / 'Stoner Witch' (can't decide)
Shellac - 'At Action Park'
Botch - 'We Are The Romans'"

Chickenhawk - 'Son Of Cern' by RockSoundMagazine
When was the point you realised being in a band wasn't just something fun to do but a viable way to spend your life?
"It really isn't a viable way to spend your life. Unless you are U2 or Coldplay for example, money is scarce and it therefore becomes necessary to suppliment your income via other means. We all work part-time and some of us still full-time, which can be pretty intense combined with the live schedule we've had this year. We haven't made a penny out of this band, any cash generated goes straight back into things for the band, not into individuals' pockets so they can house or feed themselves. I'm not even sure why we do it when I reflect on the situation like that. It's just a labour of love, I guess."

What's the furthest you'd go to promote your band?
"Without examples that's a hard one to answer. Bands get up to all sorts of cringeworthy shit these days. Whenever we get approached to do something by a third party or one of us comes up with an idea it is scrutinised to see if its really 'us' or not. If somebodies not feeling it after a bit of thinking then we generally ditch it or don't get involved, so its a bit of an open book and is assesed case by case. I definitely wouldn't bum a dog to get publicity though."

What's been your favourite moment so far in the band?
"Probably playing Leeds Festival to thousands of people. Also seeing an actual physical copy of 'Modern Bodies' for the first time. Very proud of all the work that went into making that album."

How will you describe Chickenhawk to your grandchildren?
"Four friends who made a lot of unnecessary noise."

How do you want people to feel during a Chickenhawk show?
"Violated, elated, shocked, like they want to move and dance around."

What's the biggest argument you've had as a band?
"It's normally during writing and more so in the finalising of a song. It's mostly always over stupid details as well that 99 per cent of listeners wouldn't pick up on. But that's not the point, we are very passionate about the music we produce and I think this sort of thing shows how much each person cares about it being as good as possible. Unfortunately in an imperfect democracy what is good is highly subjective!"

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