The Spook School, “Burn Masculinity”

Quinn Moreland

Last summer, The Spook School performed at NYC Popfest and it was one of the most heartwarming, inspiring shows I have ever been to. At the time, the Scottish quartet’s latest release was 2013’s Dress Up, their spectacular indiepop-punk debut following a series of singles and EPs. As the album’s cover and title suggest, a majority of the songs on Dress Up discuss gender fluidity, identity, and the strength that is inherent in acceptance. The Spook School is composed of Nye Todd (guitar), Adam Todd (guitar), Anna Cory (bass), and Niall McCamley (drums), but the lack of clear front person makes them seem less like a band and more like a family (which two of the members technically are).

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One of the shining moments of the Popfest concert was when the band performed their unreleased anthem “Binary“, which asks, “Why let yourself be limited to binary desires / To binary identities / And binary ideals?” Their newest single “Burn Masculinity”, exists in a similar vein as “Binary” (also, both songs have shirts!!). As the band explained, “It’s about how being male-identified shouldn’t give you an excuse to be a dick or exert control over other people.”

“And I’ve got to accept that I’m inheriting a privilege of persecution and abuse / And I’ve go to accept that I’m inhering a privilege I should be aware of,” Nye, who identifies as transgender, sings. The single, originally released for the It Came from Plan-It-X 2014 compilation, now features a video by Mario Cruzado. The animated short features neon layers over VHS fuzz and found footage, as well as a superhero who destroys douchey water cooler dudes with rainbow mindwaves. The “Burn Masculinity” video also arrives as an announcement of a new record, to be released in September by the UK’s Fortuna Pop!

The Spook School tour dates

June
03 Cleveland at Now That’s Class*
05 Chicago at The Empty Bottle*
06 Cincinnati at Tacocracy*
07 Columbus at Spacebar*
08 PGH at City Grows*
09 Washington DC at Comet Ping Pong w/ Mercury Girls & Expert Alterations
10 Baltimore at the Penthouse*
11 Brooklyn at Alphaville w/ Beverly, Spook School and Expert Alterations Official Kanine Records Showcase

* with Wildhoney

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