Hello Hugs Of The Sky……welcome to the DeClunk universe.
Please introduce the band and tell us who does what and where you are in the world.
Hi declunk! I’m Boris, the singer and guitar player of Hugs of the Sky. My brother Sigi is the bass player and our drummer is Seppe. We live in different places across Belgium. The band has its origins in “Limburg”, a province in the east, close to the Netherlands and Germany, where we all grew up. It’s a pretty inspiring place, because it’s a place without any big cities, but at the same time on the border between the past and the future. There’s a good balance between taking care of the natural situation and being open to new industries and architecture. At the other hand, you could say that music is very attractive just because there can be a thin line between calmness and boredom sometimes.
Please give us a description of your surroundings so that we can be with you during the Q and A.
At the moment I’m in Brussels, it’s the capital of Belgium, so mainly a collection of cement and concrete. It’s quite central on the European continent and you’re very quickly everywhere. For instance also in Limburg, where we still rehearse. I see Brussels as a small city and Belgium as the big city where its part of. Also Paris and Amsterdam are not so far. Regarding my more direct surroundings: I’m in my small studio listening to The Tuss, a side-project from Aphex Twin I guess.
Hugs of the Sky is an interesting band name. How did it come about? Were there any other names in the hat?
We were sure of this name immediately, there was no other option because it’s the fusion of the names “Hugs” and “The Insect Soldiers of the Sky”, two bands in which we already played together. At one point it was logical to continue with just one project, as I was the main songwriter for both.
Please describe your music. Make up a genre if you like.
For a long time, it was difficult to pinpoint our genre and to come up with just anything. It was a bit independent, a bit punky… But only after I started to listen more to neo-psychedelic rock, which had a big revival during the 2010’s, I realized that we were doing this all the time. I think since we formed “Hugs of the Sky”, we are quiet consistently doing psychedelic rock. Maybe sometimes, there are some hints of stoner rock, but we also have songs that would be more like jangly pop… Psychedelic rock should cover all of it.
Your latest single has just been released and we love it. It’s called ‘Creature Up Your Feature’. It’s a little bonkers and so is the video. What’s it all about?
Obviously it’s a love song! It’s about unfulfilled desire and pain, but at the same time maybe a theory of consciousness. The beauty of music is that we can express our bad and lonely feelings, and still make some kind of world or perspective that can inspire people in a good way. I think for example New Order are the masters in doing this. There’s a lot of absurdism and philosophy also in this song, like in all of our work.
The new album, ‘Tangerine Boredom Delusion’, is on the way in February. We are really looking forward to getting our grubby little hands on it. Is it a bit bonkers too? What can you tell us about it? How the writing came together, is there a theme running through it and so on? What was the inspiration behind it?
It was written in the course of the pandemic, so I think it’s not always the most happy album. We are a band that literally and figuratively live from playing live. But still, like in the previous question, it’s not yet the end of the world. Even before the pandemic started, we called our music “psychedelic shit for all your post-apocalyptic balloon parties”: so it’s also just a reflection of and on our times. There are always recurring themes like ecological questions, the relation between human and machine… We like to keep it simple but still create an experience that makes you think.
Is there a tour coming? Will you be in the UK? If you’re up in the North of England you are invited to dinner at DeClunk HQ! I know….hard to resist, right?
There is a tour coming! We are supporting The (one and only) Sisters of Mercy on their EU tour in April 2022. We would love to come to the UK one day! We had some small concerts planned in the UK a while ago, but they got canceled because of the obvious reasons. I’ll be sure to try to look for something in Carlisle next time, seems a nice road with a lot of opportunities for touring bands to there.
What music did you grow up listening to and at which point did decide that this is what you were going to have a crack at as a career?
My parents are both music lovers with a very distinct, niche style and so I went from a pretty young age to a lot of concerts. I think around age 12, I really started digging Queens of the Stone Age and practiced their basslines. I was always in a very creative environment and actually I can not really picture myself anymore without music.
If we were to come to your neck of the woods for a weekend where would you take us. You are the Entertainment Committee!
I would just take you for a walk in a field or a forest then. Always adorable.
Any bands/artists that you recommend we check out?
I’m so much into vaporwave lately, t e l e p a t h or Telan Devik for instance, check them out! Or Bergsonist or Filmmaker if you want some more dark electronics.
Many thanks for taking the time with DeClunk.