INTERVIEW: Cultdreams | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Maybe you’ve heard whispers of an exciting underground punk duo on the UK DIY circuit called Cultdreams, or maybe you picked up on them under their previous alias of Kamikazee Girls. Having exhausted themselves touring critically acclaimed debut album Seafoam, they’re now returning for their next (r)evolution. Lucinda Livingstone (vocals, guitar) was ready to chat about their new album, a new name and their new direction.

“Things That Hurt definitely takes everything up a gear. I’m really excited for people to hear it. Musically the sound is bigger, fuller and a lot more melodic, whilst maintaining the louds and quiets and thrashy raw sound that people know us for.” Lucinda explains. “Lyrically the record is very open, honest and reflective. I feel like writing these songs really let me explore my childhood, grief and loss, and who I am a little more, whilst looking at the world around me and realising how problematic it is, and how hard it is for many minorities to navigate their way through life safely.”

From the get-go, Things That Hurt embodies everything that Cultdreams have been working towards. Lucinda and drummer Conor Dawson are as far from an old band as they could possibly be, yet they’re fighting wars which started long before any of us can remember. Not My Generation unleashes the anger Lucinda and so many of us feel at a political climate which promotes selfishness and intolerance, while Don’t Let Them Tell You Otherwise carries a sense of world-weariness only achievable once punk has reached its logical conclusion – a weariness without defeat, but instead which is still powered with grim determination.

Over the last few years I’ve learned no matter what happens outside of the band, I know when I’m playing a show I am the happiest I can possibly be

The exceptional album has been carefully and meticulously crafted; with some time away to take stock, a new moniker seemed a logical way to christen their reemergence. “We’ve had the time and space to experiment more and write songs that people wouldn’t necessarily think they would hear from us. I also have a bit of a thing for opening tracks on records, so with this one I really wanted to write a killer opener. There’s also a song I play by myself [Statement] that we recorded live in the studio as we were trying to capture how I had been playing it live on tour. I hope the message of that one comes across the same way for people that haven’t seen us play it before.”

Cultdreams’ members share their creativity across multiple projects, but it seems this band will always hold special meaning for Lucinda. “This band has saved my life repeatedly, every year since we started, and it’s changed me as a person and still does constantly. That sounds a bit dramatic, but I can’t express it any other way. It’s an important outlet for me to vent my frustrations with myself or what I see around me. I don’t know where I would be without it. I struggle a lot to find happiness when I’m not on tour, and this is the one dead cert for me. Over the last few years I’ve learned no matter what happens outside of the band, I know when I’m playing a show I am the happiest I can possibly be.”

Cultdreams play Westgarth Social Club, Middlesbrough on Monday 23rd September. Things That Hurt is out now via Big Scary Monsters


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