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The Mudd Club preach the power of rock'n'roll as they say Give Me A Thrill on new album and head to The Wedgewood Rooms | Interview

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Step-siblings Sadie Morningstar (guitar and vocals) and Julian West (drums) would frequently rummage for bargains in their favorite record store.

‘We had this great record store in Lawrence, Kansas where we lived, called Love Garden,’ recalls Sadie, talking with The Guide on a video call, ‘and they had a great discount bin with all these 45s for a dollar. We’d start picking out things we thought sounded weird or interesting – (1963 one-hit-wonder) The Martian Hop by The Ran-Dells, that one was quite good. Then I found all this (influential rock’n’roll guitarist) Link Wray stuff in there, I don’t know why they were selling it so cheap, so we discovered a lot through the Love Garden discount bin!’

Combining these finds, their love of classic rock like AC/DC and Deep Purple, as well as vintage garage-rockers like The Sonics and feeding them all into a blender, The Mudd Club were born.

The Mudd Club are at The Edge of The Wedge on November 3, 2022

The band began when Julian was still in single figures and Sadie just 16, and now relocated to Britain, they have been making waves with their effervescent take on garage-punk.

Sadie lives in Bristol with band bassist Joe Trudgeon while Julian lives in Wales with his parents, who are also musicians – they perform as Truckstop Honeymoon who have just been on tour with folk-punk troubadour Frank Turner. Julian sometimes drums for his parents’ band.

The family moved to the UK about three years ago – Julian’s dad/Sadie’s step-dad is British, but the younger generation’s outfit had already played shows here.

‘We’d been to England and Wales on tour, and Julian and I had been supporting my mum and step-dad, and it went down pretty well – it got a better response here than back in America. It feels like there’s more of a punk scene still alive here, or it’s more concentrated than in The States at least – you get little pockets of the culture there but it can be very spread out.’

The Mudd Club are at The Edge of The Wedge on November 3, 2022

Last week the three-piece released their second album, Give Me a Thrill, the follow-up to 2021’s debut LP Bottle Blonde.

‘I’m fond of Bottle Blonde, but I did write most of that when I was 18,’ says Sadie, now 21, ‘that was made as we were transitioning to live in the UK and I’d got off tour playing bass with my dad’s project, and it was all very hectic. I couldn’t live where I was in The States and it was all a very unsure time and it was kind of thrown together too quickly – I would have liked to have spent a bit more time on it.

‘I love that album but this time around we’ve had more time to relax into it, more time to focus on it, I definitely had more of an idea about what I wanted in production. It’s a solid album and I’m excited to release it. It gives a better picture of what we’re doing at the moment – ​​I’d say it’s more firey rock’n’roll than punk – it’s grown up a little bit.’

She pauses before adding: ‘But not completely grown up!’

Although Julian is already quite a veteran of touring he’s still technically not old enough to be in some of the venues he plays in.

‘It’s quite funny,’ says Julian, who’s also on the call. ‘But I’ve been in them before with my parents – when we play gigs and it says on the poster “18-plus”, that’s me stuffed, ‘he laughs.

‘Usually when Julian plays a gig he’s got his dad there,’ adds Sadie, ‘so it’s okay if he’s got his parents there, and we’re making sure he’s staying out of trouble.

‘I try to set a good example – I think I set a good example,’ she says as Julian makes a bemused face beside her which she catches.

‘Don’t make that face!’ she howls and the pair descends into fits of giggles.

‘Out of personal preference, I don’t really drink when I’m playing,’ Says Sadie, ‘and wuth Julian being 15, our bass player is also our designated drinker in the band – we let him take care of the rider! ‘

This will be The Mudd Club’s third visit to the city. They were here most recently for one of the summer’s Punk on The Pier shows – ‘That was good fun, I’d never played on a pier before. I think Joe got a bit seasick..’ says Sadie with a laugh – but their first as headliners.

They’re supported by AlterModerns, a Brazilian punk duo also based in Bristol.

‘We see them all the time, add Sadie, ‘they’re good friends – They’re crazy but I love them. We’re doing a couple of gigs with them on this little tour.

‘And we’ve got so much new merch! We’ve got two new T-shirts, lighters, stickers. Unfortunately we won’t have the new album on vinyl yet because that’s taking ages, but we’ll have CDs.’

They play The Edge of The Wedge in Southsea on Thursday, November 3. Tickets £10. Go to wedgewood-rooms.co.uk.

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