An interview with Cactus and Cardigan before their Bfest 2013 gig.


Cactus and Cardigan are Peter Bacon, Marc Sutherland and Jack Macphee a band our reviewer, perhaps astutely, summarised as ” [We are]Fairly convinced it will get limited airplay on Radio 1 but Cactus & Cardigan are genius”.

The band has developed over time initially starting life as a stop-gap while the guys were in other bands, Jack explains ” It started out as a 2 piece garage (as in, 2 sweaty dudes literally jamming in a garage, not the urban genre ,most popular at the turn of the millennium) project that was going to be no more than something to record for fun, in between existing musical ventures.”

What started as a low key  enterprise quickly built up a bit of steam “Peter and I put some of the recordings online, completely anonymously. The good feedback came as a bit of a surprise and questions arose as to how we were going to take this untamed beast into the live situation.” Completing the line up, bassist Marc joined; “We then lured Marc into the band with a Refresher bar and a Frijj milkshake.”

“I’d be lying if I said that the lyrics were sculpted in anyway”, Peter comments when describing the process of constructing the songs, adding “anyone listening to the EP (Gag Reflex) may not find this a surprise!!” He explains “The music usually gets written first, then the first words off the top of my head are laid down.”

The band continues to win fans, although Peter suggests that this is secondary (although desirable) “We make music we like and enjoy playing. if other people enjoy it as well it’s a bonus, but not compulsory.” He reflects “It[‘s] really is rewarding when someone digs what you are doing.” The interaction with the crowd is important for Marc: ” Even though we bring the riffs and take what we do seriously we’re a fun band that really enjoys playing to a crowd, and I think that really shows in our live performance….  I also think that because the EP is quite tongue in cheek & a bit strange lyrically that it grabs peoples attention & they have a laugh and want to share it with friends.”

The music can be a learning experience too Jack shares, we suspect with a touch of tongue in cheek, “People have expressed how they’ve actually learned things from our songs, the amount of my friends that didn’t know what smegma was unreal. Made me think if they actually kept themselves clean at all.” Every day’s a school day.

Next stop for the band is BFest, not to be confused with any other festival, Marc questions  “We are going to BEEFest!?!”, No. Whilst the band themselves have not played at the festival, they have as members of different bands, Paul explains; “Having played the festival before in our previous bands (Myself with Friday Night Lights, Jack and Marc with No Exit Wound) we kind of know what to expect. As a performer and a punter over the years, Bfest has never disappointed.” He adds  ” [we are] Very much looking forward to our set!”

After Bfest 2013? “We are booked in to play The Ironworks in your fair city of Inverness, in support of He Slept On 57’s last ever show (tickets via ) , for the foreseeable. Really looking forward to this one”.

Check out Cactus and Cardigan on Bandcamp, Facebook and Big Cartel.

Click for tickets for BFest 2013, and check out our most recent interview with The Xcerts about the festival too.