09-07-2024 Music 848

404 Error - Vote for Us

404 Error - Vote for Us

Released on Friday (5 July 2024) to coincide with the immediate aftermath of the UK General Election 2024, ‘Vote for Us’ is the new single and video from Newcastle darkwave / synth provocateurs, 404 Error – with the video premiering exclusively via Devolution Magazine on Friday. The single also features new virtual B-side, a reworking of XTC’s post-punk/new wave classic, ‘Making Plans (for Nigel)’.

Hot on the heels of their debut video-single ‘ETHAL’ just one month earlier (5 June 2024), ‘Vote for Us’ is the latest offering from 404 Error‘s new album, Scene Killers. A semi-anonymous project, 404 Error is the work of a musician going by the name of 36663, whose debut album combines minimal synth, alt electro, darkwave, and synthpop influences with the project’s wry social commentary, and impish sense of humour.

‘Vote for Us’ is not actually about the UK General Election, though, as 36663 told Devolution:

“When we wrote ‘Vote for Us’, the UK Government hadn’t yet called a General Election. It just so happened that they did so at a time when we’d been thinking about releasing our second single.”

As to the true inspirations behind the song, 36663 continued:

“I really hate it when promoters/festivals do the whole “which bands do you want to see?” bullshit. I mean, OK – getting feedback from your attendees is good, and it can be a way of finding bands who’ve bubbled under the radar. But in most cases, it means one of two things:

“One is that the post is for engagement, and there is little-to-no intention of booking the bands, which feels dishonest. The other is that the promoter just doesn’t know what they’re doing.

“It’s inevitable that one band or another will enlist an army of fans to vote for them. And depending on the polling system, automated bots aren’t that hard to write! And of course, fans want to support bands they like, of course! Especially if this is a big opportunity. But if the fans are on an entirely different continent from the event in question, and therefore not going to attend anyway, then it’s moot.

“That being said, everyone should tell your local promoters to book 404 Error, and definitely vote for us for any single-of-the-month / album-of-the-year type polls.”

Remarking on the new ‘Vote for Us’ video, 36663 continues:

“We wanted to keep the visual gags simple and accessible: not be tied to knowledge of UK Government. I’m sure many people in many countries can identify with some of the characters in the video. Be it the Gimp in a Suit, who seems to have very similar policies to their opponent, but has a different colour tie; or the popular cheerleader who has no real policies at all. That said, maybe the cheerleader is also a double reference to the main meaning of the song: that popular doesn’t necessarily mean ‘best suited’!”

The new 404 Error album, Scene Killers, explores themes around regionally skewed histories and rose-tinted remembrances of the dark alternative scene (as in the album track ‘Nostalgia’); the pressure from gatekeepers and influencers to “support the scene” or lose it (cue: ‘ACAB (Includes the Fun Police)’); and the persistent scapegoating of fans amid accusations of “killing the scene”, when bands, DJs, and promoters fail to generate interest in their events: exemplified by songs like ‘Vote for Us’, ‘Cancel Culture’, and ‘(It’s Not Your Fault) Our Band is Shit’.

Scene Killers by 404 Error is out now from Bandcamp, Spotify, and all major digital music platforms.


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