WHEN Manchester band PINS want to design a new album cover, it can be a time-consuming affair. The all-girl band with a punk ethos are hands-on when it comes to their creative direction, and with five people in the band, that can be pretty tricky.
“There’s a lot of mood boards, a lot of Pinterests, Facebook chat, and then we just talk about everything all of the time,” says singer/guitarist Faith Vern. “It can be stressful, but it’s mostly fun.
“The last record sleeve we did there were so many ideas we had, but when we got the right idea we just made it happen. That’s the power of having five people, everybody can make it happen.
“We do everything ourselves, up to a certain point... I don’t know if that’s down to us wanting to control our own band, but also it’s just really fun. I would hate to be in a molded band where someone tells you how to look or how to present yourself. There’s a lot more freedom in DIY.”
And there’s no shortage of artistic talent between the members, many of whom have an arty degree to their name. It’s fitting for their upcoming Manchester gig, where they’ll support punk legends Buzzcocks at the Design Manchester festival - a city wide festival of creativity and design.
The Buzzcocks and PINS will play Manchester O2 Ritz on October 19 at Fizzing at the Terminals, a gig which will be adorned with the artwork and projections from the festival’s exhibitions, including reworkings of Buzzcock’s legendary ‘Orgasm Addict’ sleeve.
The gig will see two punk generations meet - but PINS have already seen how intergenerational Buzzcocks’ music can be when they saw the band play in London in 2015.
“Me and Lois (PINS guitarist) went down to London at The Garage where they played a show,” Faith recalls.
“It was funny ’cause there was some other guys DJing who had all the original 7” vinyls that they had been collecting for years, and then we were playing the exact same songs, but from our laptop. We were like, sorry!”
And while they’re fans of Buzzcocks, the band’s approach to any support gig is to play it as if it’s their own headline show.
“Of course it isn’t,” Faith admits, “but that’s the best way to treat it if you want to have the most fun, and just make the most of our slot.”
It’s the kind of confidence you need to make your way on the gig circuit, especially for an all-girl band, says Faith.
“Obviously girl bands don’t get as much attention as guy bands, they’re not on the radio all the time, the whole music industry is male dominated, it’s just so evident.”
“It’s good to talk about it, because nobody should be getting s*** for being a woman, or being a musician of any kind.
“The best thing is when people say I’ve started a band because we saw you play, and they say that before they didn’t feel confident to pick up an instrument.
“Even if we’re only doing that little bit, that’s something that I feel proud of.”
Buzzcocks and PINS / O2 Manchester Ritz / Thursday October 19 / tickets from £26.10 including booking fee at Skiddle and Ticketmaster
Steve Diggle and Pete Shelley of The Buzzcocks