When I first got word of Mark Hoppus and Alex Gaskarth joining forces for a band that would become Simple Creatures, my reaction was that they would be able to play off of each other’s strengths as songwriters and musicians brilliantly. Little did I know that this side project of sorts would morph into one of my favorite electronica-driven new bands to come out of this decade. Twelve songs later into their debut in 2019, and we are left with a much better picture of who Simple Creatures are. Whereas Strange Love was an introduction to the band and what they were capable of, Everything Opposite finds Mark and Alex at their most confident, accomplished, and strongest.
There’s some really cool ideas floating out there in the big folder of potential Simple Creatures music, but I think as we’ve continued to write, the ethos and the sound of Simple Creatures is becoming more defined. At first, we were just kind of swinging and trying a lot of different things, and part of that process was finding out the voice of Simple Creatures and what that is. Now we’re a lot more familiar with the kind of music we want to make for this, I think when it comes time to making more music, I’m sure we’ll go back and end up pulling from some of that stuff. But I think the idea of continuing to innovate and keep it new is what excites me most about this project, so I imagine that’s where we’ll go with it.
“I did come up on blink and Mark was very much an inspiration to me, but we’ve had the honeymoon period as it were, become good friends… I’m not fanboying out in front of him anymore, like I used to seven years ago! I don’t think the creative process would be as honest if I was sitting there going, ‘Yeah, whatever you think man, I love you!’ We both keep each other in check, and push each other to do better.”
The first thing we did was like a diet blink-182 or diet All Time Low. It wasn’t great. We listened back and decided it wasn’t what we wanted to do at all. We started off with a completely different mindset. We had this idea of everything opposite: Whatever you’d normally do, try and do something different. If something made us feel like it wasn’t something we wouldn’t normally do, we took it as a good thing. We were trying to get away from traditional recording techniques and embracing strange keyboard sounds and ratty, shitty guitars, buzzy subs and programmed drums.