The synth-punk band Special Interest tore a hole in this year’s Not Dead Yet festival in Toronto last month.
The band’s appearance at the annual punk festival was preceded by their reputation for aggressively breaking down the audience/performer dynamic. With song titles like “The State, The Industry, The Community, and Her Lover,” they have a clear motivation to create a conversation about the performer versus the systems of control they are forced to operate within.
While using old-school punk tropes such as physical and lyrical aggression, the band also rejects many of the politics put in place within the punk community itself, in order to create an entirely new — and very overdue — conversation within it.
The New Orleans-based band may be here to party, but they are not here for that passive shit. Their disposition is refreshingly reminiscent of a time when the term “punk” was motivated by a distinct urge to radicalize its surroundings, while also throwing a really good party.
We got to chat with band members Alli Logout, Maria Elena Delgado, Ruth Ex, and Nathan Cassiani about their relationship to the punk community, and how in 2018, identity politics around queerness and race may be causing more trouble than progress. Read the full Q&A after the jump!