kamikaze girls Interview by Matt Catling

Kamikaze Girls have a very raw sound, noise-pop with a punk rock attitude.

How would you describe your style and where do you get your inspiration from?
Conor: Being asked what you sound like is always a difficult one to answer - I feel like we just write the music that we want to write and would like to listen to, and yeah I guess it just comes naturally from that. There's some Riot Grrrl influences, there's some shoegaze moments and there's some rocking out, fuzztastic moments. It's just about us finding the right balances of all the stuff that we like I guess. 
Lucinda: Conor pretty much nailed it I guess. There’s a lot of angst and anger in there that’s just purely from within the both of us, but musically we listen to all sorts. Before SAD as Conor said there was a lot of Riot Grrrl influences musically, but when we came to writing the album I think we drew inspiration and ideas from all over the place. It’s nice to listen to a bunch of different music and take influence from different places.
How did you meet?
Conor: I was doing sound for a gig at Zavvi and the band Lucinda was in was playing. After that we both ended up at the same college in Leeds and starting jamming after both the bands we were in at the time split up. We've been jamming ever since.

What’s the nicest thing that a critic or another band has said about you?
Conor: Me personally was a review we recently had, when we put the track Berlin out, which was "the heaviest drums we’ve heard in a long time." That's the nicest thing that anyone has ever said about me. We also had a review of our EP SAD that we released last year that called us, "one of the most important bands in the U.K. right now." Which lead to a running joke between the two of us where it just gets more ridiculous every time we mention it. I think last time, I described us as "THE MOST INFLUENTIAL TWO PEOPLE OF THE PLANET RIGHT NOW." 
Lucinda: There’s a bunch of nice stuff online which is great. But one thing that really hit me hard the other night was our friend Kenni from The Sinking Feeling / Frauen. Frauen played Leeds and I played solo before they got on stage. When Kenni got up there he started talking about our ‘SAD” enamel pin and was saying how ever since he wore it, it was like it was a badge of honour for him. People would make jokes or just ask him if he was ‘sad’ and he’d say ‘yeah, yeah I am sad’, and it was like how our little enamel badge had made it okay to talk about his mental health issues out loud and not be ashamed of them. The fact our band / merch did that for someone was a huge compliment for us, it was great to hear it was impacting someone.
Alongside performing at DIY Popfest this year and a new album coming out in June what can we expect from the band?
Conor: We have a two week tour supporting Gnarwolves in May and well as a little co-headline run in June with Nervus. We're also playing some pretty great festivals this summer, including 2000 Trees and Truck. I've been to 2000 Trees every year since 2011, so this is going to be a particularly special festival for me.

What are the bands influences? 
Conor: I think it's easier to say what don't we listen too. We have a pretty broad range of influences, stuff like 90s riot Grrrl stuff from Bikini Kill, Bratmobile, and Pretty Girls Make Graves obviously get played regularly. I've been listening to a lot of Reuben and The Sleepy Jackson recently, they are completely different so that's just a little glimpse into what we listen too.
Lucinda: Yeah it’s hard to pin point these for sure. I grew up on Pop Music and loved Michael Jackson. A lot of pop music and R&B is still instilled in me, and I don’t know if that ever influences our song structures potentially. When Conor and me are driving we’ll play each other all sorts of different stuff. I’d say when I’m on my own I listen to a lot of electronic music like The Album Leaf and often listen to a lot of solo projects from artists like The Lion and The Wolf.
And finally what's the music scene like in Leeds at the moment?
Conor: The music scene in Leeds is pretty great, there's a lot of really interesting bands. There is also a lot of saturation there too, so it's very difficult sometimes, there's loads of competitions for gigs, which definitely isn't a bad thing but can sometimes be a little disheartening when you are trying to break into the scene.
Lucinda: There’s so many different sectors of it, it’s hard to keep up. There’s a few little DIY Punk Collectives, then a huge amount of Indie Rock / Pop. We have a few staple venues for things like metal / pop punk and then just lots of tiny venues dotted about that are suitable for everything. I think the Brudenell Social Club as a venue tends to have the most eclectic mix. I love it there.