By Oscar Ross, Music Editor
Huddled over laptops and drained Evian bottles at Stoke's Croft's Cafe Kino, Bristol based duo Try Me talk naked sprints down Whiteladies Road, the beauties of lockdown busking, The Mighty and holiday singles.
As afternoon showers stripped Crofter's Rights of it's usual glow across the street, Try Me duo Hector Boogieman and Bendy Wendy (Miles and Molly) sat in a booth at the all vegan Cafe Kino, putting aside their avid gig planning for this Friday's launch party at the Louisiana for upcoming single 'Road Runner' to give Epigram the inside scoop on what makes this chaotic, Peep Show-like musical duo tick.
“It was a rainy Monday afternoon sound engineering class” reminisced Hector Boogieman, speaking on how the band formed out of a joint exasperation at over-confident students in their BIMM classes. As well as this, Hector and Bendy Wendy bonded over a love of British cult comedy TV such as The Mighty Boosh and Peep Show. “What we love is that British, horribly awkward humour” commented Wendy, going on to describe the importance of comedy in Try Me's music:
“I just think it’s so funny and cheeky if you can slip something in to make someone laugh in a song. It adds a spice that I think is really needed in the music industry today” - Bendy Wendy
Alongside their music, the duo film a Peep Show style online series called Keeping Up With Try Me. The show delves into the pair's everyday lives, providing the full works of strange happenings, passive aggression and awkward silences. “It’s not a mockumentary it’s a documentary” commented the pair when asked about the accuracy of the show, “We don’t even film that ourselves we just get sent the footage anonymously by email”.
“They say be your genuine self and we really are” continued Boogieman in all seriousness, as the the two spoke about how they enjoy having a fun side project, or as Bendy Wendy put it “It's like a side baby that we don't have to care about as much”.
Watch the first episode of Keeping Up With Try Me below:
“It’s nice to see that we’ve played all the venues that we never used to get replies from when we started out.” said Boogieman, speaking about how the band started out busking and open mics and has now played Bristol Pride. “It had been on our list since we started out” said Wendy, speaking about the thrill of playing at Pride here in Bristol. Boogieman looked to which venues the band would like to do next saying: “Now we can start sending emails we’ll probably get no response to to venues like the O2 and Motion. We’re gonna manifest our next set of gigs, that’s when the emails come rolling in.”
“There's no stage so you really connect with people”, commented Boogieman, speaking about the intimacy of busking settings, going on to say “It's great until they keep coming forward, then you're an inch apart and it gets quite awkward”. Bendy Wendy also commented on the hostility that the duo had to deal with during the curfew period of lockdown, with drunken mobs filing out of bars at 10 P.M, proceeding to kick and steal the band's busking equipment. “It was a Manic crazy time, I think Hector got twerked on one time, we had our trolley stolen, it was crazy”. Remembering how they “religiously toured the open mic circuit”, Wendy gave Epigram the main highlight of the band's open mic going days:
“I love themed singles, so I wish more bands did themed tunes” commented Bendy Wendy with an emphatic swing of an empty water bottle, commenting on the band’s two song Halloween project Spookytown last year. The band’s twisted sense of humour and in your face attitude perfectly match the feel of the Holiday on songs “Rotten” and “Frankenstein”, bringing the scary side to their comedy. “You can do them every year” added Boogieman, continuing on to agree that perhaps a Christmas single was in order, with Wendy already spitballing grinch toned lyrics:“A Try Me Christmas: Come get warm by the fire and toast your socks”
“It's about being in a rush” the pair said, almost in unison when asked about the meaning of upcoming single 'Road Runner', releasing this Friday with a launch party at the Louisiana. “I loved the idea of writing a sing that people could actually listen to while being in a rush, that it could function like that” commented Wendy, also praising the single's “Beautiful buttock bum artwork” by videographer Ben Dornan Wilson.
“It was a weird walk home at 6 A.M being like: We've just ran naked down Whiteladies Road” said Boogieman, explaining how Wilson and the band made the trip to Clifton in their dressing gowns at 3 A.M to shoot footage of the pair racing naked down the the street to an audience of early morning busses and one “very creepy white van man”. “We both had front coverings on” assured Boogieman, though commenting the covering “apparatus” the pair used was not particularly “sturdy”.
The infectiously funky single that led to this bold photoshoot releases Friday August 19th, with Try Me putting on a launch show of “Drag, puppetry and music” at the Louisiana the same night. If the band's dynamic and charisma are the same on stage as they were in person, you're in for a show this Friday. Catch Hector Boogieman and Bendy Wendy bring their riled up electro punk to the Louisiana this week accompanied by a range of special guests and acts from across Bristol's arts scene.
Get your tickets here, using Bristol’s own non-profit ticketing app for independent artists, Headfirst:
Featured Image: Oscar Ross
Have you listened to Try Me's music yet?