The Brighton quintet Squid have been quickly making a name for themselves amongst a generation of exciting young art-rock bands coming out of the UK and Ireland. Early buzz led into the Town Centre EP last year — we ranked it amongst our favorite EPs of 2019, while also naming Squid one of the best new bands of the same year. A couple months ago, the group returned with a great new single called “Sludge.” Today, they’re back with another one.
The band’s latest is called “Broadcaster.” It began with a synth arpeggiation written by keyboardist Arthur Leadbetter during a session in a woodland cabin, while his bandmates were out for a hike. For lyrical content, drummer/vocalist Ollie Judge turned to a different medium. “Lyrically the track was inspired by the visual artist Naim June Paik and his TV Garden installation,” Judge explained in a press release. “I thought it blurred the lines between a dystopian and utopian vision. I imagined what it must be like living synonymously amongst nature and technology in the most literal way I could imagine, with TVs towering over me amongst forests.”
While “Sludge” found Squid pushing further against the edges of their sound and emerging with a warped, psychedelic track, “Broadcaster” marks an even more exploratory moment for the band. It’s a sparse, eerie mechanism of a song — dominated by that synth arpeggio and Judge’s slowly intensifying vocals. It perfectly conjures the world Judge imagined, playing out like a man driven mad while isolated and trapped amongst burbling transmissions. Check it out below.
“Broadcaster” is out now. A limited edition double A-side vinyl featuring “Sludge” and an extended version of “Broadcaster” is out 6/26 via Warp.