Brighton upstarts Sick Joy were one of the highlights of The Great Escape’s First Fifty showcase this winter, showcasing buzzy newcomers ahead of next year’s festival - and they played Upset’s stage. Nice one, right? With a heavy Pixies influence, the trio - made up of Mykl Barton (vocals, guitar), Danny Piston (bass) and Drew Michael (drums) - are busy bringing back all the grungy best bits of the 90s.
Hey Mykl, what's up?
I'm good just sliding down some vegan bacon with a side of scrambled eggs because contradictions are everywhere.
So who's in the band then, where did you meet, and what do you all do?
There are three of us. Danny plays bass, Martyn plays drums. I met Danny back in Newcastle just through bands on the circuit, and we started playing together. Martyn was the same. Saw him playing at a show, we needed a drummer, so we got together. Sounds so simple written out. Martyn and Danny are both currently exploiting the world's fascination with coffee and all its guises working at coffee shops in Brighton. I'm just here. Doing life.
What prompted the move from Newcastle to Brighton? That's a bit of a trek.
It fuckin' is, man. Whatever way you do it, it's long and expensive. Our poor mothers. We just got seduced by all the rad bands going on in Brighton and the vibe of the place, so Danny and I got in a van and just went down. Lived in that for a while, got some jobs, got a house. Here we are.
How are you finding life at the seaside?
It's nice down here, man. It's like nowhere else. It's a melting pot, and a lot of it revolves around creativity and freedom, which is nice.
You seem to have been really busy this year, any notable highlights?
I mean, Brixton Academy was pretty decent, like. The tour we just finished, the EP and recording the single. It's all fucking good, right? Otherwise, what's the point?
Are you going to have a similarly packed 2019? Lots of festivals and stuff?
We just want more of it. We're greedy boys. Hopefully, we can get out and play more, get more music out, all the classic shit. If we can, we will. What else is there?
What's the best thing about a Sick Joy live show?
I dunno man, you tell me. Come find out. I've got nothing left to sell.
We're nearing the end of 2018 now, what bands have you been enjoying over the past twelve months? Who's been smashing it?
Oh fuck, I've discovered a bunch of bands this year, it's been wicked. Our friends Demob Happy have killed it which is so good, they're grafters and earned every bit. I love Pip Blom from Holland, Dilly Dally from Canada, Idles, obviously. I could list so many; it's rad there are so many great people making great music.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing new bands at the mo?
The business bullshit. I think everything that isn't just actually playing can be a real fucking drag. But if you wanna try and pay your rent or buy some food with your music, you've gotta work out how to do it without it sapping your life out. As long as you love it, you'll be fine.
Anything else we should know?
There's lots we should all know more about.
Taken from the December 2018 / January 2019 issue of Upset. Sick Joy will play The Great Escape next year.
Featuring Black Peaks, Boston Manor, Creeper, Idles, Dream Wife and loads more.