Melbourne punks CLAMM are coming to the UK for the first time this summer, ahead of their upcoming album ‘Care’, out 14th August! The singles preluding the release are both punchy and relevant, with ‘Bit Much’ and ‘Monday’ keeping the raw punk sound the CLAMM solidified in debut album ‘Beseech Me’, whilst expanding further on their angers and frustrations on society.
We chatted to them about soul-sucking jobs, making time to find catharsis, their upcoming tour and more..
Did you set out for your lyrics to be political, or has CLAMM naturally become an outlet for your frustrations?
I don’t think we set out for our lyrics to be political. CLAMM’s sound is frustrating and loud and our lyrics reflect this sound. I’d like to think it’s more about honesty and an expression of frustration or discontent that we face in life, and I suppose quite a bit of that relates to politics.
You met Maisie at a gig, and Miles & Jack have been playing in various bands together for years – what do you think the important of smaller venues and musical communities is to up and coming artists?
Smaller venues and musical communities are the most important thing about making music for us. Attending rock gigs at a younger age gave us the opportunity to connect with a community we aligned with. I think this is extremely important and I wish underage gigs were more of a thing in Australia so that it could start at a younger age. I think a special thing about the live music scene is that there is always a stage for everyone. Thanks to smaller venues, you could start a band one week and the next week have an opportunity to play your music on a stage. That might change your life in some way.
‘Monday’ is a very relatable track for many who are in soul-sucking jobs, and appears to cover the all-work-no-reward structure that society seems to have built – what inspired you to tackle this topic?
Maisie wrote this song. She works really hard. She works more than Miles and I do, but often feels like she’s just as broke as we are which is really frustrating. Work makes you tired and can consume your life and then you’ve got nothing to show for it. In some cases anyway. I think a lot of people share this frustration because laborious and monotonous full time work seems to be such a large part of this wonderful capitalist life.
‘Beseech Me’ covered a variety of hard hitting topics such as mental health, anti-violence, materialism and more – what do we have in store for us on ‘Care’?
Much of the same I guess. We probably go into it a little bit more with this album. The first one was kind of rushed. We loved how people related to the album and I think we wanted to think a bit more about why this was and set our feet a little deeper. We question power structures in this song a bit. It’s about navigating life – it was written during covid so there’s a bit about that. It’s a bit more about the self as well. Self-empowerment, introspection and the relationship between some of these political ideas and the self.
It can be hard to give yourself the self-care we all need when we’re constantly bombarded with awful happenings in the news, as covered in ‘Bit Much’ – tell us about the though process behind writing it, and what you do to reach a sense of catharsis?
I guess I went into it a bit above. But, overall, it just all seems a bit ridiculous doesn’t it? We are a part of a system where we are expected to work the majority of our waking hours in order to survive or pay exorbitant amounts of rent/mortgages. We have to manage personal and family relationships. There seems to never be a shortage of one horrific thing or another happening in the world which is then spread questionably by evil news corporations possibly benefiting from our fear. You’ve got to laugh really. I do. Where does the time for “self-care” exist within this? You have to prioritize it. CLAMM is a part of my own catharsis, but I have things I try to do everyday to create space and quiet in my life.
What are you most looking forward to about getting back out on tour?
We’ve never toured Europe. We have no idea what’s in store but we are most excited to share our live experience with as many people as possible and to visit all these incredible cities we’ve never been to.
Finally, leave a question for the next artist we interview…
Have you had any weird dreams lately?
Catch them live in Brighton and Bristol in August & September! Tickets available here