It’s time for episode 3 of the Thekla Isolation Discs Podcast! Speaking to Chris this week is the bass player and founding member of a band who have been dominating the rock scene these last few years – it’s Dev from IDLES! As well as going through Dev’s selected tracks, the pair cover a range of topics including the IDLES early years, awards ceremonies, dealing with poor mental health whilst on tour, music videos, DJ sets and Dev’s naughty cat.
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Passionate, political and darkly comedic, IDLES’ debut album “Brutalism” made an impact that no-one, not least the band, could have expected when it arrived, seemingly out of nowhere, in 2017. It was an album with such relevance to the fractured Britain that birthed it, that the band’s potent individuality and honesty simply couldn’t be ignored –and was described perfectlyat the time by Uncut as:”arare rock record with the rage, urgency, wit and shattering of complacency usually found only in grime.
No band toured harder, and invites to support the likes of Foo Fighters and The Maccabees (at Alexandra Palace) saw IDLES’ message spread even further, leading to a signing with the Brooklyn and London independent Partisan Records. IDLES second album saw them become leaders in a movement of new bands tearing down outdated perceptions of masculinity and bucking a trend of style over substance. Songs from the record were full-throated indictments of sexism, racism, the polarisation of Britain in the wake of Brexit, nationalism and toxic masculinity. The record felt both incredibly personal and at other times universal, wearing both its heart -and an active mind -on its sleeve. In a musical landscape that had become so safe and sanitised, IDLES were and remaina bolt to the arm of the norm.