Astroid Boys are set to play Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle this month where they’ll be supporting Enter Shikari so Lee Allcock caught up with drummer Big H to speak about giving the youth a voice, H & M hoodies, and 2018.
How does it feel to be playing huge arena shows right across the UK?
It’s going to be sweet. It’s our biggest tour to date and what a privilege. I don’t think anyone sees it as anything different to our regular shows though, we just get to do it in a bigger room, on a bigger sound system to a bigger audience. Plus I think we’re all just super excited to have the chance to play our hometown arena – that’s going to be ridiculous.
You’re known for detailing the thoughts and feelings of, what you note, is: “a generation who feel unheard and ignored.” You must be passionate about giving the youth a voice…
Without getting too political, I think it’s important that if you’ve got a platform, use it. Use it for whatever you want but don’t let it go to waste – shout about something. We kind of have our way of thinking and if other people think the same then sweet, let’s be mates.
What bands or artists have had the biggest influence on you as a band, and how?
We all have our own influences and when it comes to it the honey pot is smouldering. Elliot’s got the signature sound and when we get to sprinkle it takes its own sound and becomes what it is. I suppose we can get away with it as the different sounding songs throughout the album are kind of a representation of the members’ influences.
How does it feel to be given the opportunity to support arguably one of the biggest bands in the punk/hardcore genres of the 21st century, Enter Shikari?
Weird. I remember swiftly passing through a multi-coloured H&M hoodie phase like everyone in my schools quad and Shikari was the kings of it. Not once did it ever cross my mind I’d be playing in a band, let alone being able to support a band like that in the venues we are. They caught the wave and nailed it so for me it’s pretty sweet. I just hope they play ‘Adieu’ every night so I can have a little cry.
You’ve also supported the likes of Trash Talk, Deez Nuts, Flavor Flav, Public Enemy, Grandmaster Flash, Skepta and Stormzy over the years. What advice has any of those artists given which you’ve taken on board ever since?
When we played London Battersea Flavor Flav said to me: “If you can’t blast 200bpm you better get off that Throne H.” I didn’t believe him at first because he doesn’t play the drums but when I walked past his dressing room and he was smashing a 220 hammer blast I knew it was true and that stuck with me forever. JJ from Deez Nuts once sat us all down at a soundcheck and read ‘The Story of the Little Mole’ to us. The story is about a Mole who got shit on and he tried to find out who did it. He didn’t give us any advice; I just think he really likes the book. Maybe there was a deeper meaning, I don’t know.
What can your fans expect from you in 2018?
Show, music, videos, festivals and new merch – all the wonderful things a band can offer but of a lot better quality than previous years. Not once have I felt this band slowing down and I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.
Astroid Boys support Enter Shikari at Metro Radio Arena, Newcastle on Sunday 19th November. Tickets, priced at £30.25, are available from metroradioarena.co.uk.