a/s/l ATG Special: Bearded Youth Quest

Remember the days of the old schoolyard? Remember when Myspace was a thing? Remember those time-wasting, laborious quizzes that everyone used to love so much? Birthday Cake For Breakfast is bringing them back! 

Every couple of weeks, an unsuspecting band will be subject to the same old questions about dead bodies, Hitler, crying and crushes.  

With ArcTanGent Festival being a mere week away, Birthday Cake For Breakfast reached out to a number of bands on the bill – mainly the likely highlights of the festival! This edition: James Hollins of Bearded Youth Quest!


James Hollins/Male/My room sitting next to a painting of a marmoset in a little suit.

Have you ever seen a dead body?
I saw an elderly man have a stroke outside a service station once. It nearly put me off my subway. Nearly.

Who is your favourite Simpsons character?
It’s a hot toss up between Montgomery Burns and Hans Moleman.

What T-Shirt are you wearing?
An Asics sports bra in burnt chromium.

What did your last text message say?
“I’m just getting a sandwich if they finish soon let me know!” (sic)

What’s the last song you listened to?
‘Alive’ by Arca from his Mutant album.

How did you meet the people in your band?
Well, me and one of the other guitarists (Perry) were both really loving the debut album by Fang Island and we started meeting in my Dad’s cabin to write some instrumental rock riffs to amuse ourselves. We had no initial goal of forming a band but once we invited Sam and Jo to jam out some ideas the songs started taking form real quick.

What’s the first record you bought?
The first record I bought was Sweet Like Chocolate Boy by Shanks and Bigfoot. On tape! That’s a really important recording in terms of influencing BYQ.

What was your favourite VHS growing up?
I wish I could say something cool like The Goonies or something but it was actually Beauty and the Beast.

When was the last time you cried?
Playing That Dragon Cancer yesterday. Also inexplicably whilst watching Star Trek Beyond a few days prior – I had never even watched anything Star Trek related up until that point but the Leonard Nimoy scene got to me.

Have you ever kissed someone & regretted it?
I think the regret is always on the other foot when it comes to kissing me.

Best Physical Feature?
My crooked nose and disgusting smile.

Worst physical feature?
My picking hand.

Reasonably ok/not bad feature that you’re not fussed about?
My fretting hand.

Do you have any pets?
A cairn terrier called Ted who makes my life miserable on a daily basis. I think he’s actually some sort of ancient mischief god in the body of a dog.

Ever picked up any injuries on tour?
Is Hepatitis an injury? Only kidding! No, we’ve been very lucky.

What did you do for your last birthday?
Sobbed endlessly into a caterpillar cake until it had deteriorated enough to drink in one gulp.

Name something you CANNOT wait for?
ArcTanGent – we’re super excited about doing our first major festival and we’re glad it can be one that we’d attend anyway! And my brit milah.

Do you have a crush on someone?
Eunuchs don’t get crushes.

What’s the shittest experience you’ve had as a musician?
Err, I don’t know if I’d be doing this if I had any truly shitty experiences as a musician. It’s all relative I guess but working in shitty pubs, shops and holiday camps would be the worst experience I’ve had as a musician because I wasn’t spending as much time doing what I love.

If you could go back in time, how far would you go?
I’d go back far enough to replace all global religions with Nintendo games. If I go back far enough to give every warring tribe around the world a copy of Super Mario Bros 3, I feel like the future would end up much happier.

How do you want to die?
Not too selfishly.

What’s your favourite thing about pizza?
Certainly not the after effect of eating it, as I can’t really process dairy too well. Andrew WK wouldn’t be able to party hard with me unless he carries a sweet supply of Imodium at all times.

What are you craving right now?
Imodium. I just can’t say no to Andrew WK.

Have you ever been on a horse?
I’ve been IN a horse but, thankfully, the directors I work with now are less niche.

What did you dream about last night?
I haven’t had a dream in years. Insomnia kind of eats up your dreams. I’m like Sophie from the BFG, I need Mark Rylance to fire his dream trumpet into my brain.

If you could go back in time and kill the baby Hitler, would you?
I don’t think I could kill a baby. Can you imagine? Think about how it would literally feel to kill a baby – I’d be scarred for life. I’d wait until he was at least 18. Although in the hypothetical reality proposed by this quiz, people would already be worshipping Nintendo (see prior time travel question) so Hitler probably wouldn’t exist.

Do you like Chinese food?
Not best for vegetarians if bought from takeaway places. Plus MSG is super addictive.

Have you ever been on TV?
Twice. Once on an interview segment for a local children news show called Child’s Eye and then again on the same show tasting custard made by Brian Turner in ITV studios. It’s a long story.

Ever meet someone famous?
I’ve played a few function gigs for famous footballers but it was wasted on me. A charity event at Arsenal and another for Man Utd but I didn’t know any of them apart from Wayne Rooney and Ryan Giggs.

What do you want to be when you grow up?
A children’s care worker by day and a party prog-ster by night.

Bearded Youth Quest have a bloody album out! Click below to go and buy Yatta! then check out Bearded Youth Quest at ArcTanGent this year on the Saturday!


Like what you see? Why not stick around and check out the other articles and interviews!
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