As England continue to soar through the Euros, punk band Bilk does the same with their weird and wonderful take on the world of modern music.
Raised in the oaths of Essex, the rising trio sit between the chaotic yet fun blend of indie, rap, and punk with the taps of youthful adolescent that's growing them into a force to be reckoned with in the UK music scene.
From hit single 'Bad News' to the anthemic 'I Got Knocked Out The Same Night England Did', Bilk are now preparing for their upcoming EP Allow It this August via Scruff of the Neck Records.
With new music, live tours and critics across the board watching every move they make, we caught up with lead singer Sol about everything we could fit in.
Firstly, as the Euros kick-off and you release your latest single, 'I Got Knocked Out The Same Night England Did' - what has the past week been like for the band?
It’s been alright yeah. We filmed a new music video for the song, and we put it out the day the Euros started. It’s perfect timing because everyone’s going around shouting “it’s coming home” and getting excited about England winning, and we put our stamp on it all with the most pessimistic England football song there is. It’s been interesting getting people's reactions to the song, especially at this time of the Euros.
Delving into the story of the England national team kicked out of the 2018 World Cup and lead singer ending up in A&E, did the track reach what you wanted to achieve, and why did you want to tell this story to your listeners?
Our fans and mainly ourselves like the song, so it’s successful in that way. I wanted to tell the story because it’s a good one, and not many bands/artists/rappers tell it like it is and would admit to coming out worst off in a fight. There are so many toxic masculinity bollocks where everyone wants to talk about how tough they are, and I think it’s refreshing to make something from a different angle. I also wanted to comment on the culture of fighting on nights out in Britain as it’s something I’ve experienced first-hand and I think it’s dumb that when England are doing well in football, everyone is best mates, but as soon as we lose, everyone hates each other and is fighting again. We shouldn’t need good football results for us to get along as a society and try not to kick each other's heads in.
Whilst you've released your latest work, the main talking point is your upcoming EP Allow It - what secrets can you spill, and what do you hope to achieve from it?
I try not to get my hopes up too high because you can never really predict how it’s going to go down. Some of the music on it is different to other stuff we’ve done before, but we like to keep it moving and have songs that are for different emotions, and songs with different musical influences behind them but still keeping it true to me and what bilk is. I wouldn’t want to write the same song over and over again because bilk isn’t that kind of band, and our music reflects life in general, and life is very diverse.
Further, alongside your previous singles 'Bad News' and 'Stop Pranging Out' with three new more tracks - what has been your favourite to create so far and why?
There’s not really a favourite, to be honest. We like all the songs on the EP equally for different reasons. 'Stop Pranging Out' was fun to make because it’s more hip hop, and there was a lot of room to experiment with sounds and ideas. I listen to a lot of hip hop, and the production is always something I’ve loved. We did some cool shit with that track like we sampled a bong bubbling sound subtly in the background. It’s another thing that’s subtle but helps paints the picture and tells the story of taking magic mushrooms in Amsterdam.
Looking back at your beginnings, how did BILK come together, and what was the key influence in your music journey?
I can’t remember what the key influence was. I think it’s something I’m meant to do. It just felt right when I started the band and started writing my songs. I was in my last year of school when I began playing in a band, and I didn’t like school much, so it was a bit of a release maybe. Also, I was always that kind of kid in school that wasn’t unpopular but wasn’t massively popular either, so doing music gave me my voice and my own thing to focus on.
With your work now gaining thousands of views and catching the eyes of Louis Tomlinson, what do you dream of happening next?
We want to carry on doing what we’re doing, get back on stage again and keep dropping new music. Carry on working hard. We want to be noticed and respected because all of us have always thought we’re really underrated, and we still do. We’ve got a lot more to do, and a lot of people don’t know it yet.
In other news, though we will be seeing a delay in restrictions lifted, do you hope to perform live this summer, and what can fans expect?
Yes, we’ve got two hometowns Chelmsford shows that we’re playing soon. Both sold out in under an hour. We only put on the second night because the tickets went so quick for the first one, and there were loads of people still wanting to come. We’re doing them as free gigs too, to help out anyone that’s been financially affected by covid who wants to come, and also the venues because it’s been tough for them to stay open, and it’s an important thing.
Finally, what is the dream for BILK?
To make our mark on music history.