They appeared out of nowhere, with no warning and within a month have been BBC 6 Music single of the week, had Amazing Radio on their team and BBC Scotland taking notice. If that is not a very definition of taking the indie circuit by storm, then we don’t know what that would be. We have sat down with Memes to talk about their new single, future gigs and their lyrics. This band combines post punk fury with intelligence and wit of The Fall. Mark E Smith is probably looking down, nodding his head with approval and saying to John Peel that there are still good bands in the UK.
You can listen to Memes on 60 seconds CV on Steve Lamacq’s Recommend’s show at:
They are going viral and we couldn’t be happier!
At Indieterria, we take pride in researching each band we interview. However we weren’t able to find much about Memes. We learnt only that you come from Glasgow and that the band is made out of two friends named John and Paul. Introduce yourselves properly to our readers.
Memes: Memes is John McLinden and Paul McLinden and we are cousins and we are a new duo from Glasgow.
We love your enigmatic attitude. You have no biography on social media, just an email address and a couple of pictures are available. Tell us more about Memes. When did you start playing? Have you been involved in any previous projects?
Memes: To be honest, the mystery hasn’t really been intentional, the missing bio and lack of information on the band is mostly down to the fact that the band is being so new! That said, it’s hard for bands to maintain any mystique in the social media age, which is a shame, as it is one of the things we like about some of our favourite bands.
Memes came about from some downtime in another band we play with (we have been involved in various projects before). We just got together to record some ideas that Paul had written. We were just messing around really and DIY recording in a loft in Glasgow, but we liked the end result of ‘Blah Blah Blah’ and thought we would put a single release together to see if we could get any reaction. We only started working on Memes in February 2019.
Scottish blog Turn Up The Volume compared your music to The Fall and The Smiths with a “healthy dose” of Idles. What are your inspirations?
Memes: Very flattering of them to say so, we would count those bands as favourites of ours for sure. We like anything that is interesting or provocative in some way. That could be anything from Talking Heads to Frank Sinatra to Steve Reich.
In another review you were described as “Fast and furious lo-fi post punk that sounds like a frantic Mark E Smith after a day spent watching BBC Parliament”. And we have to admit that your lyrics have the same wit and edge as the lead singer of The Fall. We will risk saying that he`d be a fan. You are not afraid to be outspoken and yet do it in a subtle way. That’s a very rare quality in music these days.
Memes: There isn’t much in the way of being outspoken (or saying anything really) in the mainstream, but there are bands and individuals out there causing a stir. We haven’t deliberately set our stall out to say anything specific but hopefully the songs catch the imagination.
You just released your debut A side single “Blah Blah Blah”/”Funny man” and captured attention of everyone in the business. You have been a single of the week at BBC 6 Music as chosen by Steve Lamacq himself, you have been championed by Jim Gellatly on Amazing Radio, Tom Robinson from Fresh on the Net is also very fond of the song. This Feeling added the single to their Best New Bands playlist. Is this attention something you have expected?
Memes: No, not at all. We liked the music and hoped others would, but having the airplay we have had for such a new project has been fantastic, we just have to back it up now! Music is a difficult nut to crack and we have only released two songs at the moment, but hopefully our next release will raise the game!
Talking about debuts, The Duct Tape, Edinburgh zine swears that 4 months before “Blah Blah Blah” came out you have released another song that was distributed during underground punk gathering. Sadly we haven’t been able to confirm this piece of news anywhere else. True or not?
Memes: Hmmm news to us! Could be another band called Memes but it definitely wasn’t us.
We would like to ask you about the story behind “Funny Man”. Are you able to disclose the person about whom the song was written?
Memes: It’s not about any one person in particular, just the many “funny” and supposed “characters” out there that you meet…that aren’t funny and have no character, you know the ones!
We keep mentioning The Fall in this interview and on 13th of June you will be supporting Imperial Wax Band (whose members were the longest serving and the last line up of The Fall). You must have the date marked on your calendars!
Memes: Yeah, looking forward to that one. Given that The Fall has been mentioned as part of our sound, it will hopefully go down well with the Imperial Wax crowd.
Memes are just getting started – but you must have some plans made for the future. What can we expect? A new single more gigs or perhaps a bigger release such a EP?
Famous last question. Imagine you can play any venue in the world. Which one would you choose?
Memes: This would have to be the Barrowlands in Glasgow, simply a great venue.
You can follow the band on social media:
Memes can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Memes will share the stage with hottest new indie bands – Tiger Mimic and Lower Loveday at iconic venue Nambucca on April 27th 2019. The event is free entry:
You can find more info on socials at:
We will be reporting on Memes in the future since they are about to go though the roofs. Just give them few months, they will give Sleaford Mods a good run! (and we like Mods, actually them and Memes on a tour is such a good idea!).