Brighton’s Youth Sector is Nick Tompkins (guitar, vocals), Josh Doyle (bass), Brad Moore (guitar), Harvey Dent (synth), Karl Tomlin (drums), an art rock/post-punk who’ve received widespread praise from publications such as DIY, The Line Of Best Fit, Clash, and Gigwise, as well high profile supporting slots with acts such as Our Girl, King Nun, and Goat Girl. We asked the band some questions regarding their newest single “Renting Spaces In My World”, their influences, their favorite contemporaries, their upcoming slot at Hidden Herd Festival, and their future plans.
COUNTERZINE: How are you today?
Youth Sector: Very well and very warm thank you for asking.
CZ: Tell us a little about yourselves.
YS: We’re a five piece post-punk/alternative outfit based in Brighton comprised of Nick, Josh, Brad, Karl and Harvey. All members live under one roof except for Brad who has been cast out alone into the abyss (Portsmouth).
CZ: Your new single “Renting Spaces In My World” was recently released on June 21st. Could you tell us about the song and if any particular people or events inspired it?
YS: The song is written from the perspective of someone who has lost grip on reality to the extent that they believe that the own the whole world, and all the people they see are paying to rent their place in this world. However even in this mad fantasy world, things are beginning to fall apart, so it’s an imagined insight into a very unhinged individual. While it is not based on any particular person or experience, we all know someone who seems to think the world rotates around them so I suppose it’s a surreal take on those people.
CZ: What and who would you say are some of your foremost musical influences?
YS: The big four would have to be DEVO, Talking Heads, Preoccupations and Ought. Anything that’s kind of weird and punky is on our list. There are some great bands coming up now like Egyptian Blue and Squid who are up that alley.
CZ: We noticed similarities in the artwork for “Renting Spaces In My World” and your other recent single “Run”. While there hasn’t been an official announcement, we’d hazard a guess that an EP or full-length is on the way. Unofficially, we hot or cold on this one, and when we might expect more from Youth Sector?
YS: You might want to put a hat and scarf on or you’ll catch your death at this rate. At this moment there’s no plans for an EP, however we like to have some continuity in our artwork (all done by the fabulous Cameron JL West) simply for aesthetic reasons. We’re preparing to get back in the studio in August so there will be more from us probably in autumn time, and there are some whisperings of a music video for ‘Renting Spaces’ being around the corner.
CZ: Abbie McCarthy of BBC Introducing predicted that your band is going to be “huge”. What’s it like to have that expectation of you so early in your run?
YS: The pressure is horrendous and we haven’t slept since. The good news however is that predictions like that have made us extremely arrogant and almost unbearable to be around.
CZ: You’re playing Hidden Herd Festival in Brighton on July 13th, which looks to be one of your biggest shows to date. We also know you’ve played a few Hidden Herd shows in the past. How’s the relationship been, and what has their support meant as both a blog and promoter early in your career?
YS: We love Hidden Herd – Jim and Culvin are exceptional writers and brilliant promoters, so their support has not only been a great help but also it means a lot to have a promoter that puts on well organised, stress-free shows, so we’re always grateful for any opportunities with those guys.
CZ: Are there any plans to tour later this year, and if so, where might people be able to catch a show?
YS: No tour plans as of yet, but we will have some more London and Brighton shows later in the summer that are yet TBA. The only announced gig coming up is Hidden Herd Festival on 13th July in Brighton, but beyond that you’ll have to stay tuned.
CZ: What was your favorite artist or band that you’ve gigged with during your tenure as a band so far?
YS: We recently played a show with Walt Disco who were incredible, and Gaffa Tape Sandy and Plastic Mermaids were some of the nicest bands we’ve played shows with before (as well as being brilliant bands).
CZ: If there was just one thing you wanted everyone to know about Youth Sector, what would it be?
YS: The biopic is coming to Netflix in 2020. Machine Gun Kelly will be playing the role of all five members.
(Header photo credit: Julia Nala)