We caught up with one of our favourite UK bands of 2012 for a quick 'Artist Picks' style grilling...

Tell us about yourselves and about Parakeet?

Mariko: James and I started Parakeet some time ago. When we started I wrote a bunch of riffs on bass and James came up with drums for it and we were like a cute version of Trans Am. Then we could not resist the sound of distorted guitars and vocal melodies so I started recording them.

Recently we found this Strat man with long hair and we could not stop grinning when we rehearsed for the first time. It's going to be a laugh when we play shows.

What are you listening to?

James: Right now I'm listening to The Ascension by Glenn Branca. And recently I've been listening to Swans, The Cows, Gumball, the Beak> album and Electric Wizard. I saw them at The Forum the other day; just massive stoner rock riffs for an hour and a half. They formed in a really small town in Dorset which is really close to where I grew up.. And I always go and see Advert when they play- they're the best band in London by far! Also, Mariko and I have been mixing our album over the past few weeks so we've been listening to that alot, haha.


Mariko: I'm reading a couple of books at the moment. I'm reading The Makioka Sisters (Sasame yuki) by Junichiro Tanizaki again because it's a classic and one of my favourite stories. Where I'm calling from by Raymond Carver. It's a book of short stories which was thoughtfully given to me by Daniel (Yuck). I bought Lewis Carrroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland when I went to see Yayoi Kusama at Tate Modern recently. Kusama did the artwork and it's a beautiful book.


James: Loads of Curb Your Enthusiasm. And my brother just lent me Paris, Texas and the original 1972 Solaris- so I'm going to watch those when I get a chance. Mariko introduced me to a Japanese film called Megane which we both love.


Mariko: I was practising Kendama when I was in Japan last week. A friend of mine is an evangelist of Kendama who's just been to India on a mission to spread this. Lots of Japanese musicians play it nowadays. Kendama is a Japanese traditional toy which has two cups and a spike on a stick and a ball attached to it with a string. The aim is to put the ball on a cup or a spike.


James: I just made pasta with butterbeans and broccoli and olives. Pretty pretttty good. Mariko is an amazing cook, she taught me some really great recipes.

Anything else?

Mariko: The artwork for our first single was drawn by this Japanese lady called Hase. We happened to see her exhibition in London and we immediately knew that's exactly what we were looking for. Neither of us can draw well and it's really hard for someone else to know what you are about visually. But she gets it so right and it's been such a pleasure to work with her and we are going to continue working with her (http://hase1178.blogspot.co.uk/)

Promo Info:

Our first single 'Tomorrow' is out now and we are booking gigs at the moment!

You can visit the band by clicking here.