Band: Earthling Society
Country of Origin: United Kingdom
I first heard of Earthling Society (a psychedelic trio made up of Fred Laird, Kim Allen, and Jon Blacow) while browsing the discography of our friends at Riot Season Records. Mo – The Demon, the band’s 2018 release, is a wonderful work of psychedelia and was recorded as “an imaginary soundtrack to the Shaw Brothers batshit psychedicrazy Kung Fu horror The Boxer’s Omen aka MO or demon” according to the record’s online liner notes.
Fred Laird, the band’s chief songwriter and multi-instrumentalist (vox, electric & acoustic guitars, harmonizer guitar, marimba, mellotron, and drones on Mo – The Demon – if that’s any indication of the mindfuck your ears might encounter whilst giving it a listen), provided answers to this edition of Five Questions With. Upon review of Earthling Society’s answers, it’s clear the band’s musical, literary, film, and environmental influences are quite present throughout the aural adventures the trio take their listeners on.
1. What is your desert island disc (the one album you couldn’t live without?)
Although David Bowie’s Low, 13th Floor Elevators Easter Everywhere and Captain Beefheart’s Safe as Milk are my all time top 3. The album I would choose as a desert island disc would be In den Garten Pharaos by Popol Vuh. It evokes so much mystery and is very unique. There’s no album like it.
2. How did the band members meet (or, for a solo musician, how did you get started)?
We formed in 2004 after meeting in the local pub. We had been in bands and played all over the UK to no success. We decided to just get together and record whatever we wanted without following a particular influence. There was a bit of psych rock. A bit of prog and a bit of space rock. We had no intention of doing anything or getting anywhere with what we was doing. It was just pure ego-less enjoyment of making original music.
3. What is the underground music scene like in your home country?
Absolutely dire. The area we live is a infestation of crap covers bands playing crap versions of ‘Hells Bells’. Total arse. You have to start travelling 20 miles plus before you encounter anything decent.
4. What are some of your biggest influences outside of music?
Mystical writers like Gustav Meyrink, Arthur Machen, Kafka, Gurdjieff, Crowley. Dystopian writers such as Orwell, Philip K.Dick, Huxley and J.G Ballard.
The movies of Fellini, Herzog, Jodorowsky and David Lynch.
5. Tell us about your favorite show you ever played.
Roadburn 2007 sharing an event with Melvins, Guru Guru, Blue Cheer, Clutch. A little unknown band like us playing to a packed out room to rapturous applause. For 60 minutes we felt famous haha.