“20 Questions With Verbicide” is an interview series in which an artist is handed a list of more than 100 questions and they select 20 from the list they would like to answer.
Yuck is on a Spring 2016 tour supporting their latest release, Stranger Things, and Verbicide caught up with Max Bloom of the band for one of our quick “20 Questions With Verbicide” interviews. The story is accompanied by some great photos shot by Alex Freeman at the band’s performance at Waterloo Records at SXSW 2016.
Ever bought anything from a late-night infomercial?
I very nearly bought something called the Magic Bullet, which was then re-branded as the NutriBullet. The only difference was that instead of making muffins, you made smoothies. I tried making an omelette with it at my friends house and it looked like fried vomit.
Did you prefer life prior to the internet and cell phones and social media, or do you think we’re better for it?
In some ways it’s better, and in some ways worse. I think it’s absolutely amazing how you can communicate with someone so easily on the other side of the world, so in that way it is helping to bring the human race together. However, I think Facebook and other social media are inherently bad and not good for the mental state of children today. I would hate to be a child growing up in school having to deal with constant social anxiety around the clock.
What is your favorite holiday?
Me and my girlfriend went to Paros a few years ago, a Greek island in the Cyclades. It was absolutely stunning, really clear seas and amazing seafood. I would love to go back there one day.
Choose but only one: a sweet, slightly salty Gruyère; creamy Camembert; or slow-smoked sharp cheddar, aged three years.
Sharp cheddar all the way. I like cheddar so strong it needs to be packaged in black just so people know its not for the faint-hearted.
What is your absolute oldest memory?
I remember sliding down the stairs in my diaper (nappy in English) because I had shit myself. It happened a few weeks ago.
What defunct band or deceased performer would you have loved to have seen, but won’t be able to?
David Bowie, of course…
What is your favorite website?
Reddit. Especially the cats and tuxedo cats subreddit.
What is your favorite film of all time?
A film called Lilya 4-ever. It’s a pretty devastating film, but it’s absolutely incredible.
A curse is placed on you and every day, for the rest of your life, you must either piss blood, shit hot asphalt, or vomit latex-based house paint. Which do you choose?
Who the fuck chose this question? What a bizarre thing to think of. I’d love to meet whoever came up with this question and write a sitcom. Probably piss blood, so that when I’m angry I can say “I’m literally pissing blood.”
Did you have a favorite stuffed animal as a child? What was it?
It was a toy cow named Edward.
Which social media site do you use/like the most? How can people find/follow you?
I really like this new app called Cymbal — it’s like Instagram, but instead of pictures you post songs. When you go onto someone’s profile, you can play their whole playlist. Its a really interesting way to share music you like. Our username is Yuck.
Australia or New Zealand?
We toured Australia and New Zealand when we played Laneway Festival a few years ago. They’re both absolutely amazing places; however, we had a lot of time off in Auckland so we got to do a bunch of awesome stuff. We went snorkeling, ate lots of Korean food, and generally had a great time. So New Zealand has a one-up on Australia just because it holds a special place in my heart.
What is your favorite breakfast cereal?
I really like Cinnamon Grahams — or in America, you call them Cinnamon Toast Crunch, I think. Its amazing to eat when you’re stoned. When I was younger I used to get incredibly high at my friend’s house and then eat a bowl of CTC and watch South Park. Those were good days.
What is your favorite restaurant to eat at while on tour?
America has a bunch of incredible places that we don’t have back in the UK. First stop on tour is usually a supermarket so we can stock up on van snacks, and Trader Joe’s is such a good call. I’m also addicted to baked goods, so I have to physically restrain myself from trying them all. I’m a big fan of Dunkin’ Donuts.
What is the greatest live band you’ve ever seen?
Wilco at End Of The Road festival a few years ago.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in a small suburb of North London called Finchley. It wasn’t a bad place to grow up, just really boring. I remember when I first moved to East London I was amazed by how many young people there were on the train.
What is your best piece of advice for aspiring artists?
Before you release anything, write at least 30 songs, and give yourself the chance to develop before anyone hears what you’re doing and you start becoming self-conscious. Also — make music only for yourself, always make whatever you’d like to listen to, and never follow musical fashion trends.
How many pets do you have, and what are their names?
I have a fat black and white British Shorthair cat called Whiskey. She’s a rescue cat that we got from the RSPCA. We were only supposed to be looking after her for three months, but when it came down to finding permanent housing for her we just couldn’t let her go. She’s not exactly the most affectionate cat, but I just love her so much.
Do you consider yourself an introvert or an extrovert?
A bit of both. I can be quite social when I want to be and “turn it on” in front of people, but I do feel extremely worn out after a night of socializing, and I get a lot of enjoyment from being on my own.
In the past year, what accomplishment do you look back on that you’re most proud of?
Probably releasing our new album, and I’m not just saying that as a shameless plug! Its been an incredibly challenging road but I’ve never felt more proud of something we’ve done.