Creativity Without Boundaries: 404 Guild Interviewed

Peering into the London collective’s murky waters…
If you were to delve deep enough into the murky waters of modern music making, you’d be met with a world of ghost-writers, music bootcamps and streaming platforms. South London’s 404 Guild is a sonic rejection of the alarming ‘new normal’ we’ve seemingly become all too accepting of. If you’ve ever listened to their songs, seen them live, or read an interview, it’s abundantly clear they can’t be pigeonholed into the categories that many artists are.

So, what is 404 Guild? The more you listen to them, the harder it becomes to settle on. I can’t help ask it as my first question when talking to them over zoom. “It’s in the name, it’s a guild, it’s a collection of people sharing skill sets, it’s more of a collective than anything.”

The Guild have blossomed since moving to London eight years ago, a move they feel was essential to their growth, both personally and musically. “We all met in Eastbourne, it felt like a proper hub, but it was so important that we collectively moved to London. London for us felt like the mecca of live performance. Cutting our teeth here more than anywhere is very important, we’re still here eight years later and we love it.”

This unique group of individuals have always sat on the experimental side when releasing music, harbouring a sonic palette that cascades all the way from punk, to electronica. They’ve since set on an unrelenting experimental escapade that truly sets them apart. Their quest to constantly explore a new musical direction is reflected in the creative fraction of the group: Devenny 404 melds the production talents of Bathwater, with the lyrical backdrop of Devenny; and Elison 404, a wonderful partnership between Sonny and Elliot.

404 Guild’s latest release ‘Breathing Room’ is a wonderfully tempered piece, tapping into the sense of anomie we’ve all felt in the past 18 months. It’s a beautifully tempered arrangement, sitting amongst a contrasting, but equally masterfully discography that is a frenzy of genres and influence. Sonny perfectly paints the philosophy of Guild; “people often say to us to stay consistent, but I think it’s our strength that we don’t.” It’s a belief that’s reflected in their blossoming discography and fan-base who preach the Guild with love letter loyalty.

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Words: Josh Crowe

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