[Interview] – Getting Acquainted With Paint

Once in a blue moon, we come across great new talent that we cannot resist to get to know the core of their existence more and explore what makes them stand out of the crowd.

Bristol, UK-based indie group Paint have merely been part of our lives (nor even a band since their formation in early 2017) but they’ve captured our attention by stirring up the standing waters with a DIY approach towards everything they do. Their brand new music video for the single, “Strange Effect,” is also venturing into the hugely unexplored territory of the social issue that is often overlooked by many (i.e. all male bands) in music: the self-reliant, independent woman. That’s one way to start!

We caught up with Paint’s Thomas Rea to get the scoop on what makes these guys stand out from the others!

1. Growing up together, what made you decide to officially create a band just recently?

We’ve been playing music together for several years and seemed to have finally reached a level where it’s listenable. Many of our younger years were spent playing and writing loads of songs in differing styles. It was also really important to us that we were certain of our own unique sonic identity before starting officially as Paint. We wanted to make sure that the music we were creating was cohesive and truly representative of ourselves.

2. You are not only musicians but have various other talents within the arts industry. How does the band benefit from that?

We definitely spend a lot of time working on the visuals, and have had some great help from our friends. For example, our sweet friend Nell made this incredible animation for our first song “Intro.”

It certainly makes us more attentive to other details of Paint too, whether that be photography, fonts, logos, or artwork.

3. New single and music video, “Strange Effect,” touches the topic of female empowerment. Can you tell us more about the inspiration behind it?

Ned Botwood, who’s been a great friend of ours since the beginning of time, came up with the initial idea. It was intended as an ode to The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony” and Massive Attack’s “Unfinished Symphony.” However, as the theme developed, Ned also had a very specific idea that the video was, in his very own words, “a response to patriarchal fantasies about women in music: lyrics that depict them as beautiful, naïve mysteries and videos that exploit them as decoration. Renée Bellamy’s choreography mocks these misogynistic stereotypes, challenges the male gaze and allows this woman to reclaim her own depiction. It transforms a highly gendered and dangerous situation – the journey home at night – into an opportunity for self-expression. For this one night, London becomes a glowing sanctuary for unaccompanied women.” Or something like that.

4. Can we expect more, similarly progressive subjects for songwriting in the future as well – other than the odd love song?

Of course. Song writing is the real focal point (as it should be). We always fee we’re improving. It’s also really hard, going into a studio on a shoestring budget and trying to get out exactly what we have in our minds of what the tracks should sound like. We’d love to be able to produce ourselves, and is something we’re looking into. That’s one of the many reasons why Kevin Parker, Whitney and other self-produced artists sound so great because they’re able to go into the studio and produce a work identical to the idea that’s in their heads. I think you can expect a sonic development from Paint, and some real honest and lively sounds from ourselves down the line.

5. Who or what motivates you the most as an artist?

A big question. There’s a whole load of clichés we could list off, but we’re honestly motivated purely because the band and music is the one thing we deeply care about and get excited by. We’re all individually driven by music, but being in a group naturally motivates everyone. There’s a definite chemistry between us all. I guess the fact that we’ve known each other so long contributes to this. We find it difficult to understand why someone wouldn’t be motivated in this way.

Dóra Udvardi

Dóra Udvardi

Writer. Photographer. Admirer of Arts.