We had a chat with New Zealand-born, London-based singer & songwriter October.
In a few sentences, could you describe yourself to introduce you to our readers?
My name is October, and I’m Kiwi Brit living in East London. I’m a Great British Bakeoff fan, I like giving myself homemade haircuts with the kitchen scissors, watching live streamed surgeries on Instagram and I also write and produce collage-rock under the moniker October and The Eyes!
Is October your fav month of the year?
Since moving to this side of the hemisphere October has been made even better. All the seasonal cliche’s finally make sense! Pumpkins and autumnal leaves n lots of leather to wrap up warm in. Usually it’s spring on my home side of the hemisphere.
October is my birth month so obviously it’s one of my favorite times of the year – plus it’s spooky season and I love any excuse to dress up.
“The Eyes” Is in reference to an old song I wrote but I also like the idea of flipping the eyes back on to the audience or something like that. I’ve always been equally excited as I am uneasy about having eyes on me. Eyes are fascinating things.
Fashion and music melt into your rad aesthetic, what’s the best part of being a musician & model at the same time?
The best thing is that one of them allows me to do the other. Music may not make me rich but it keeps me creatively enriched.
I care more about fashion and clothing than I do about modelling itself.
It’s a nice way to pay the bills though. And I get to meet the most interesting creatives along the way like Charlotte Knowles for example, who’s now like a big sister to me.
I’m obsessed with collecting archive designer clothing – a little side hustle of mine. As cliche as it is, I just think clothing is an extension of showing who you are and what you’re about.
Music and visuals go hand in hand, and clothing is no less of an art form than anything else.
How would you describe your attitude and mood?
A constant pendulum between caring too much and not caring enough.
I’m emotional ok! A lot of the time I’m just trying not to be too embarrassed about myself. But I’m confident too. And evidently full of contradictions! My attitude toward making music is that it needs to be authentic, timeless, and fun.
I used to make music for other people, and now I make music for myself which has been an important step in liberating my creativity.
Have you ever felt like you were playing God?
Well I certainly feel like there’s a few people who have tried to play God with my life. I think it’s the general gen z/ millennial consensus is that so little aspect of our lives are within our control.
The moment we feel we do have the opportunity to relinquish control and play god for a moment, we simultaneously revel in it and chastise ourselves for it. Maybe that’s just me. I like the idea of Playing God more than the actual reality of the responsibility that comes with it. It would all be too much and I’m not qualified for the job!
You define your last songs as “dizzying, darkly kaleidoscopic, and dauntless”, can you tell us why?
This is a hard question. These are at least words that I am trying to achieve in my music. My production can be white layered at times with a lot of moving parts that perhaps feel dizzying at times?
There’s also a bit of psych influence running through my music that’s tinged with post-punk and goth influences.
I feel like these are words I would use to describe some of my favourite songs like Mass Production by Iggy Pop, Bela Lugosi is Dead by Bauhaus. I’m also madly obsessed with that late 90’s/ early naughty’s era of Madonna right now with songs like Beautiful Stranger and Ray of Light.
I genuinely think the production is so so good – a little bit psych, a bit electronic, totally dizzying and dauntless production that I’ve listened to 100 ties trying to dissect it all.
Which is the place you call HOME?
I grew up in a teeny tiny rural town called Blenheim that’s surrounded by vineyards and farmlands and lots of hills. As much as I loathed it as a teenager who just wanted to escape to a big city, I’ve come to appreciate it’s quiet beauty now that I’ve moved and come back to visit.
I’ve lived in the same childhood home since I was born, so that place will always been home. In hindsight, it’s a great place to write as there’s very little to distract you, which I guess is why I got into song writing and producing from such a young age in the first place.
However, London is my home for now. Maybe its the half Brit in me, but the moment I arrived in London, I knew we were gonna get along just fine.
OCTOBER AND THE EYES