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Meet PollyPikPocketz. Lead singer Myura, a pint-sized powerhouse, has a look that can best be described as 90s-era-Gwen-Stefani-meets-drag-queen-meets-a-box-of-neon-coloured-highlighter-pens. Effervescent bass player, Frog, is a kind of a neon-clad kindergarten chic version of Sid Vicious, prone to random outbursts of absurdity.

Kiki on guitar is giving off 70s vibes with an abundance of facial hair and ever-present sunglasses. And recent addition, Shane, who bangs the drums? “I’m the no one — I just try to keep my head down and try not to cause any trouble-”

“Well it’s not working,” Frog cuts in.

 

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They have their own colourful brand of dirty grunge music with a punk edge. This night was set up by Nina Courson of the healthy junkies. They’re known for their explosive live shows – bursting at the seams with energy.

Tell us about the event you’re playing tonight, Punk’n’Roll Rendezvous.

Frog: Always great bands, always completely different, always free, always fucking great, always a bad hangover afterwards.

For someone who hasn’t heard your music, how would you describe it in a few words?

Frog: It’s a bit like an armadillo drowning in a bath full of warm jelly.

Myura: Kind of like that, but also a bit punky, grungy melodic noise.

How long is the set for tonight?

Frog (mishearing): How long is the sex? Oh, we’re not one of those sort of bands.

Kiki: You have to pay extra for that, I’m afraid.

Frog: It’s 30 minutes, which is good ‘cos we only know 30 minutes worth of songs. *laughs*

You’ve had some changes to your line-up in the last few years. Would you say your sound has changed since starting out?

Frog: We’ve been through like 3-4 drummers in our time. I don’t know if Shane’s getting scared yet, but he should be.

Kiki: I feel if anything maybe our songs are gradually getting heavier and heavier.

Frog: We’re always trying to push ourselves and make new material.

What sort of bands were you influenced by when you were starting out?

Myura: I dunno, we all have different influences, we all like the same sort of bands like Queens of the Stone Age Stone Age, X-Ray Specs –

Frog: ABBA. Great band.

Kiki: He’s not even being sarcastic. I take that as a sign of getting old, the fact that I don’t hate ABBA anymore.

Myura: Shane is obsessed with The Spice Girls and P!nk, Destiny’s Child…

And what about the bands that were big on the punk scene – Sex Pistols, The Clash…

Frog: Big influences! Stooges obviously, Velvet Underground…

Kiki: I love 60’s music, my favourite band ever is The Beatles.

Do you think the music industry was better in the 60s and 70s? 

Kiki: Swings and roundabouts… The massive difference now is that all you really need is a half-decent laptop and a microphone and you can make a whole album yourself like we did. You couldn’t do that back in 1967, not unless you were reasonably minted and had the prerequisite equipment or you knew somebody.

We’re what you might call a DIY band, we do it all ourselves. We recorded our album in Frog’s living room in Upper Holloway.

How do you feel about playing live?

All: It’s soul food.

Kiki: That’s where it all comes together. We do love playing live.

Frog: Saying that, we haven’t tried playing dead yet.

How would you describe the London rock scene at the moment?

Frog: It’s kind of a bit underground but it’s very much there, not only alive but thriving.  

Kiki: When the alternative becomes kind of mainstream, like when grunge became mainstream in the 90s, a lot of people think it loses its lustre, it’s not the same now – but to be honest with you, I really like how the rock scene is right now.

What do you think about the Camden music scene?

Frog: It’s still one of the best places. Camden’s changing a bit. But it’s always been great for bands and I think it always will be.

Myura: Camden Rocks which runs every year is great, hundreds of bands play that festival.  

What are your favourite venues you’ve played?

Frog: Brixton Academy

Kiki: Brixton Academy.

Myura: The Dome in Tufnell Park. And here, The Unicorn.

Apart from The Unicorn, are there any other venues you like in Camden?

Kiki: I like The Dublin Castle myself, that’s a proper good old fashioned sweaty sort of venue, lots of fun, usually a good crowd there

Myura: And The Fiddler’s Elbow is always good, and the Constitution.

Frog: Yeah, the Constitution’s wicked ‘cos it’s like playing in your nan’s front room after a bomb hit it.

Who would be your dream collaborator?

Frog: Elvis. Us and Elvis, that’d be cool. Could get him to play kazoo.

Got anything big coming up?

Myura: We’re doing a tour with Healthy Junkies, Your Mum and Tokyo Taboo called the Lips Can Kill tour and that’s gonna be all over the UK.

And where else can we find your music?

You can find PollyPikPocketz’ music in all the usual places – they’re on Spotify, Deezer, Google Music, Bandcamp, Itunes, Soundcloud. Their album ‘Ang on a Minute which was released earlier this year is free to download and stream online, or you can buy the album for a few quid on Itunes or CD Baby. Or, as Frog put it, “you can come to gigs and steal it from us as well. Lots of free options”. 

PollyPixPocketz
PollyPixPocketz band – Mat Kiki (guitar), Frog (bass), Myura Amara (vox), Shane Howard (drums). Photo: Jon Himoff #cmdnlive

 

If you only check out 4 songs by PollyPikPocketz, make it these:

 

 

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