Photo by: Rhona Murphy – InstagramFacebook

What are your names?
Alex Martin – lead vocals and guitar
Sam Dawson – Bass guitar, synth and backing vocals

What is the band’s name?
The Taboos

How did you come up with the band’s name?
The exciting story of Alex driving in a car one day and thought it sounded cool so I let him go with it .

What is your genre of music?
Contemporary indie/alternative rock

Give us a little bio about you as a band.
The Taboos are a three-piece contemporary Indie/Alternative Rock band based in Southern England. Their sound is very diverse, varying from punchy anthem-esque choruses, to catchy and alluring melodic pop. Officially formed in 2018, they have acquired great live experience after supporting artists such as Nick Grimshaw, Scouting for Girls and Toploader. Their driving and energetic performances earned them regular support slots at prestigious venues in London, such as O2 Academy Islington and Camden Assembly. The band currently have 3 singles released, with plenty more up their sleeves. Their latest offering of ‘No Miracles’ marked a big leap forward for the band, being widely viewed as their strongest single to date. The band has clocked over 30,000 Spotify streams on the track so far and received an abundance of support from bloggers and radios. The Taboos are set to release their follow up single ‘Innovative Thinking’ on the 3rd July 2020.

What made you go in to music?
Surprisingly no one in either of our family’s is musical but we met around age 11 at school and both had an interest in music. We’d both recently started playing guitar and then eventually we start playing together and then we began writing at roughly age 14.

Are you signed?
We’re yet to sign to label with our music being independently released, however we do have the backing of a management company.

You have plans to release your new single ‘Innovative Thinking’, tell us more about the single.
We’re planning to release it early July and it will be our fourth single under ‘The Taboos’. Sonically, it is more ambitious, dynamic and colourful than what we’ve done before. It’s quite experimental, with lots of layered vocals from the start.

What is the meaning behind the single?
Lyrically the songs theme is the oppression technology is beginning to hold over us and how it is effecting us as a society, pulling us further apart whilst ‘connecting us all’

Describe the track in two words.
Sonic landscape

What was the writing process like?
The song started with a lyrical idea from Sam which Alex developed the music to in a seemingly effortless process. The track was written back in 2018 being fully completed in no more than a week. It was first performed as an acoustic song by Alex until he brought it to the rest of the band. The writing process got the basis of the song written by we left a lot of the guitar overdubbing to be done on the spot in the studio, which allowed it to take a new form

What was the recording process like?
It was one of four tracks we recorded at hackney road studios which was exciting as it was the first time we recorded there. We did all the instrumental of the tracks in a single day and the vocals were done at University by Alex. It was also the first time we’ve tracked as a live band, as previously we’d do all instruments individually. For this track in particular it was quite a strange thing to record, as the song has a few minor tempo changes in the first sections, which we basically locked onto how we naturally speed up when playing it, rather than trying to stick to one tempo. I think that’s why the song’s development is so prominent

Who did you work with on the single?
Shuta Shinoda was our engineer at hackney road and the track was mixed by Joe Sage who has worked on all of our releases.


Will we a music video for the tracks?
We had plans for a video shoot before the Coronavirus lockdown. We are looking to rebook it, but it’s hard to say when that will be!

Will we see a EP or Album and if so what can we expect?
Well we have a load more tracks recorded and plenty that we’ve been working on this year as well. We may see an EP but at the minute our focus is getting music out more consistently

Do you have any online shows coming up?
Because we are transitioning through drummers at the minute this is not something we have had time to focus on. We’ve been focussing on writing a load of new music and it’s worked out really well.

What else can we expect in 2020?
Another single or two and hopefully we can be getting out and doing more shows by the end of the year

Do you have any collaborations coming up with any up coming artists?
Not as a band unfortunately, but we do occasionally get a few people to put a couple of bits on our tracks, like synths and backing vocals

Would you be up for collaborations if other musicians wanted one with you? and who would they have to contact?
Yes we loved to collaborate with other musicians all they would need to do is message us on Facebook or email us at

Do you play any instruments?
Yes between us we play guitar, bass and piano

Who are your influences?
The main influences on the band when we first started out were Arctic Monkeys and The Libertines. Since then, both of our tastes have developed exponentially, with a lot of varied genres and artists. Each song draws influence from different artists We did make a Spotify playlist here if you wanted to check out some stuff that we’re listening to now

How do you get inspiration to write songs?
It could be any moment of any day I just write ideas down and give them to Alex .
I’ll often come up with melodies on trains or at other random moments. I also find inspiration from listening to stuff I’ve written and trying to make something that isn’t already there.

Where do you see yourself now in 5 Years?
We aim to make a living off of this and any other achievements along the way would also be nice. Either way, in 5 years any step forward in terms of playing bigger stages or supporting more big acts would be great.

When you’re not doing music, what do you do?
We’re both pretty social people, so probably with mates, usually at the pub. We like going to gigs and getting out as much as we can as well,

What was the song you listened to most that influenced you to go more in to the music scene?
Alex – Rinse Me Down – Blue Lip Feel
Sam – Poison Oak – Bright Eyes

What’s the best advice you have ever been given?
If you’ve got nothing good to say then don’t say nothing at all – thumper 101

What advice would you give to aspiring musicians not about the industry and just as an artist?
You’re probably gonna get a lot of rejection as most creative people do but just make sure you believe in yourself and be determined.

What quote or saying do you always stick by?
It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.

Where in your hometown is a must go to visit?
The Red Lion, Alex’s parent’s pub.

Your coming off tour;
1/ Where do you go first?
The shower
2/ Who do you see first? My bed
3/What do you eat first? Anything but fast food

When you are at a gig, what are 5 things you cannot forget?
My guitar which Sam has done before
The words which Alex has also done before
Sam’s Mac which surprisingly Sam has also done before
Where we parked the car
When we’re playing.

Do you have social media accounts so your fans can follow you?
Official Website

Comments (1):

  1. Moz Bird

    June 9, 2020 at 3:38 pm

    Loved the interview. I’ve got that “The Taboos are going to make it big” feeling! Go for it!


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