WORDS: TASH WEST
FOR FANS OF: DREAM WIFE, THE MYSTERINES
Some people may arguably think that a band consisting of only two members would not have the same presence of a band consisting of maybe four or five members – and you’d be wrong. Brighton duo ARXX are creating one of the loudest sounds in the country right now, so if you want raw, energetic garage rock then look no further than Hanni and Clara; because they’ll bring it right to your door with no apologies.
Equipped with just a guitar and drums (and their voices), they manage to create an “illusion” as they humbly state
Equipped with just a guitar and drums (and their voices), they manage to create an “illusion” as they humbly state. Armed with an SPD (a sampling pad) and a full drum kit, drummer and backing vocalist Clara Townsend manages to occupy the empty spaces both live and on record. Simultaneously, vocalist and guitarist Hanni Pidduck uses a channel splitter and two amps “to create the idea that there are two guitar parts. Neither of us are very tech-y so we have learnt a few little things that make a big difference.” The band like to be able to emulate what they play on record live too, another reason why their genuine rawness shines through, “we try to avoid getting carried away and focus on creating a big sound using a few different layers.”
ARXX are just one of many bands directly impacted by the Covid-19 outbreak. But with cancelled shows, they have not let it slow them down. With loads of Instagram lives / Q&A’s under their belts including ‘Coming Out Staying In’ (a charity festival which raised money for Allsorts, an LGBTQ+ charity) and ‘Get In Her Ears’ (who support womxn and non-binary people in music); social causes are clearly of importance to the band. “This is what we do when we’re not in the kitchen” is a motto that appears regularly on their socials and on their t-shirts. “Using that motto was our cynical response to an opinion about womxn and what’s expected of them. We’re not passing judgement on what people choose to do, but we strongly believe that we should all have the right to choose.”
It’s important to remember that everyone’s in this and have their own struggles with what’s going on
It’s clear that this band does not want to lose the clear connection that they have with everyone who follows their musical journey (especially over social media). “It’s important to remember that everyone’s in this and have their own struggles with what’s going on. Our plans changed massively, but we just want to stay connected with our community and keep doing what we love. We will be back out there soon and we can’t wait!”
Lyrically the band like to describe their songs as “break up songs”, an inclusive theme which (most) people can relate to. 2018 saw the release of Daughters of Daughters a six-song EP including ‘Moments at a Time’ and ‘Stuck On You’. Since this release, the duo have been going from strength to strength in recent months, having appeared on BBC Radio 6 as part of the Tom Robinson / Fresh On The Net show, “with Covid it can feel a bit like everything’s on pause, so when that happened it meant so much to us. We will always have love for Melita (Dennett) from BBC Music Introducing: The South, for championing our music.” ‘Iron Lung’ has racked up just under nine-hundred thousand streams on Spotify since being released in June 2019, “we feel so lucky it got the reception it did”.
ARXX are definitely ones to watch, with their raw loudness and transparent sincerity. It is clear that although 2020 threw a spanner in the works for the two piece, there are no signs of slowing down. “As soon as it’s safe we plan to record, release and tour as much as possible. We hope to be touring October through December throughout Europe. Coming to a town near you…”