Local Produce: Give Up

Local Produce: Give Up

Give Up is the newest Ōtepoti shit-head post-punk band. They came to prominence last year after making the Bring the Noise finals, which was only their second gig. Now, after opening for Beet-wix and snagging a pint night slot, they’re rolling with the motion of the ocean and are keen to get their name out more. Critic Te Ārohi caught up with the band at a house party to discuss origins, influences, and future projects. 

The band is composed of lead vocalist and bass player Niki (she/they/he), guitarist and vocalist Arlo (he/him), drummer Hayward (they/them), and guitarist Jacob (he/him). They started off as a Beastie Boys cover band (disputed by Hayward who claims to have never heard the band), but that fell through once the band realised they couldn’t rap. Instead, they decided to be a Talking Heads cover band but Niki says that they “didn’t have enough ‘White boi funk’”. The Slint cover band fell apart once they realised they couldn’t play their instruments all too well. Now, Niki says they’re “just fucking around.”  

Apart from the other bands mentioned, Give Up is influenced by Black Country, New Road, Mozart, The Clean, and Devo. “A lot of the Dunedin bands currently influence us,” says Jacob. “Hōhā, Mandate, Night Lunch, etc.” Hayward adds, “We can do this but not as good.” Asking if they had been influenced by the Dunedin Sound, Niki says, “We like to think we are better than the Dunedin Sound,” with Arlo commenting, “Don’t put that in there.” Haywood helpfully adds, “I actually hadn’t heard of Dunedin.” Niki says they hadn’t heard music at all and had to go off of written descriptions.

Their first gig was Bring the Noise last year where the band made themselves set a deadline; after having considered performing for a while, having to now perform to competition standards meant they had to sit down and finish writing the songs. “We didn’t expect to get to the finals, so we didn’t have enough songs,” says Hayward. “We had to write more, which is a bit of a pain.” They played their first proper gig at Inch Bar with Beet-wix, noting, “We appreciate Lucy so much for doing that.”

Give Up have started to record a demo at their home that they share and plan to release it later in the year. “We saw how expensive studios were and thought, $1000 to record a song? We could do that way cheaper and buy $5000 worth of equipment,” says Niki. “We will get an EP out by the end of the year.” Arlo comments, “This is the first we are hearing of it.” Their first gig was prompted by a deadline, so they announced that the EP will come out October 30 2024, with a Halloween gig the day after. 

Give Up will be performing at Pint Night on April 10 at U-Bar and opening for Vagina Dry at Inch Bar on April 13. To keep up with these gigs and future releases, you can follow them @giveup.band on Instagram.

This article first appeared in Issue 5, 2024.
Posted 4:06pm Saturday 23rd March 2024 by Jordan Irvine.