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‘Zero to a hundred’ – artists on the transition from lockdown to post-lockdown life

"The crazier life gets, the better for musicians," says rapper Avelino about lockdown

By Alastair James

Bastille & Self Esteem (Picture: Rolling Stone UK)

Musicians have opened on hitting the road once more and resuming their busy schedules after lockdown, with one band describing the change as going from “zero to a hundred”.

Artists of all genres gathered at the launch event for Rolling Stone UK, held at the Rosewood Hotel in London on Wednesday night (September 29)

It was also an opportunity for celebration, as well as a chance for musicians to catch up with friends, collaborators and discuss the state of the UK’s music scene as we emerge from lockdown.

London electro-rockers Wargasm, comprised of Milkie Way and Sam Matlock, have used their time in lockdown effectively. The pair were “trapped in a house in Ireland together” and found a new audience online.

“We fluked it,” admitted Sam. “We were quite a new act as everything was starting and had done a couple of little European tours and then lockdown.”

They’ve since found themselves on the main stage at Download Pilot festival, among other events.

Wargasm at the Rolling Stone UK launch (Picture: Rolling Stone UK)

The pair find it hard to believe things are almost back to normal and described the transition from lockdown to post-lockdown life as like going from “zero to a hundred”, said Milkie Way.

But they feel like they’ve hit their stride and audiences are in for something “pretty fucking special!”

“It’s Wargasm – you get the violence and something nice and euphoric,” said Sam.

On the importance of having a revitalised music press, Sam said: “It’s always been important” to have publications like Rolling Stone UK. “A scene needs people to write about a scene for a scene to thrive. It also needs fans and the word of mouth.”

Similarly, Daniel McCarthy and Jim Higson from the North London band, Kawala, believe having something like Rolling Stone UK back on the shelves and online is a “really exciting thing.”

As Jim pointed out: “As a musician, there’s nothing better than being talked about.”

While lockdown was difficult for the group, Daniel believes it gave the band a chance to “regroup and reform,” with Jim adding: “we had a moment to breathe”.

On what they’ve been up to over the last year and a half, they teased more music is on the way and said their upcoming debut album will feature “some of the best stuff we’ve ever written.”

Rapper Avelino argued that artists work best in difficult times saying of his own experiences during lockdown: “It’s been ok. We’ve been able to create and record music. The crazier life gets, the better for musicians.

“There’s a lot more to speak about. Maybe it’s been a bit better for us in a creative sense.”

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