Thrash Hits

June 10th, 2009

Future Hits 036: Shapes

Coming from legendary indie label Big Scary Monsters’ stable stable, Shapes have already had a busy spring and are about to have a busy summer too. We fitted them in for the Future Hits treatment…

shapes band big scary monsters thrash hits band photo 2009

From: Birmingham, UK
Sounds like: Fugazi, Mogwai, clever post-hardcore

Thrash Hits verdict: If you like your music jaunty, angular (jangular?) and “mathy”, then Shapes could well be the band for you. Don’t ask them to tell you a joke though. You’ll be disappointed.


What made you want to start Shapes?
Through the collapse of our previous bands. Our concern is to play. This is about playing music, about being a band that plays whatever we wanted to play, how and when we wanted to play it, Shapes became what it is from just wanting to play music.

Where did the name come from? Did you ever consider how un-Googleable it is?
Shapes had been around as a potential name for various other projects and never really came to light until now, its a title that we’d all been fond of. It is probably one of the most un-Googleable names for a band to have. I’d imagine it’s going to come back and haunt us, there’s so many bands with similar identities. We played Luton once, it had been promoted as “Shapes (not the Luton one)”. Only difference is we’re not a shit indie band from Luton.

shapes the pasture the oil album ep packshot sleeve artwork

What was it like growing up where you did?
We didn’t know each other when we were young as we all grew up in different towns – Birmingham was a central point for us to go to gigs and to play. It’s gradually becoming home for us all. Everyone refers to us as Brummies. We’re not.

What are your musical influences?
We’re influenced by so many different types of music and although we listen to the same bands we’re individuals when it comes to preferences. There are some that we all admire – At The Drive-In’, Fugazi, Dillinger Escape Plan. There’s a band from New York called On The Might Of Princes that gets our blood pumping. We’re influenced by so much more on a day to day basis and the people closest to us play a huge part in that.

With which band would your dream tour be?
There so many amazing bands around so to limit it to one band would be shit, hmmm…we’d have to go for Deftones opening followed by These Arms Are Snakes, then we’d have a go and finally leave it to The Mars Volta to completely blow your load too, I think for a live tour this would be insanity. I could probably sit here all day and think of some of the most amazingly versatile line-up’s, but i will not.

What bands do you consider as part of your scene or as your peers?
We get to play alot with Blakfish who are really close friends of ours and are fucking amazing. We’re loving so many of the bands that we get to see and play with lately. Colour from Kingston are definitely worth checking out, The James Cleaver Quintet and Shield Your Eyes are a few other bands we’ve played with and consider as peers.

What marks you out as different to other bands around at the moment?
Every band’s different in some way, shape or form. I guess the fact that we fully commit ourselves to being a full-time band whilst trying to maintain full-time jobs is not something I’ve come across with most bands. I wouldn’t recommend it, it completely destroys your physical and mental wellbeing.

Watch the video to ‘Trampled By A Horse’ by Shapes

What’s the best or funniest show you’ve played
I can not recall a best or “funniest” show. I guess our best shows are when we get to enjoy ourselves, meet new people, have a drink and not have to worry about getting back for work the next day, due to our unfortunate commitments to our day jobs we find ourselves in a ‘drive to and from’ situation for most of the gigs and tours that we arrange, it’s like having two full time jobs except you only get paid for one, but thats why we do it, because we love being able to play.

What have you got planned for your album/the future?
We’re constantly allowing ourselves to be versatile. I guess with our focus on an album, next it will give us the opportunity to allow new elements to form within the way that we think and write. As for the future, fuck knows, anything can happen.

What other band should everyone find out about?
If you haven’t already heard of them, Blakfish. There are so many really hard working bands that we’ve met over the last year it would shit if I didn’t namedrop a few: This Town Needs Guns, OK Pilot, Adebisi Shank, Shield Your Eyes, oh and Mimas. Definetly Mimas – amazing.

Tell us a joke.
A joke, why?


The Shapes released their latest EP, The Pasture, The Oil in May through Big Scary Monsters. You can find out more about where they’re playing on their official MySpace.



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