Mark Cashin (and the Lil Hussys) on Sugar Baby, conspiracy theories and a love of sound

Sometimes, something a little left of centre is exactly what you need, especially when it comes to music. Having an artist really take the chance to stretch the notion of the listener experience, and daring to exist outside of exactly where we usually find our ears wrapped around a tune. There’s no real way to accurately describe the sound of Mark Cashin And The Lil Hussys, and in the lead up to their album launch this weekend, I sat down with the front man himself to chat about their latest offering Sugar Baby, conspiracy theories, and a love of sound.

“Everything kind of evolves over time, it gets better as it goes along. It’s always nice to get a bit of air about your head, get some more colour for the music,” frontman Mark comments on the process of creating the record. “It’s my sixth studio album,” he continues, “I just started really getting a few riffs going, and letting a few chorus’ roll around in my head. For me it was really about not being too desperate for lyrical content. Take your time and make sure you get all the right things in there when you’re creating”.

No stranger to the Newcastle music scene, Mark has been a regular, in one way or another, for over two decades. “I’ve really been around the Newcastle rock circuit since about 1997, until well, I’m still here, and I’m still going to this day!”. This real veteran approach in my eyes, really forms the backbone of the record, pushing boundaries within a cemented platform, generating an array of  otherworldly experiences through colour and sound.

Although the album combines an enormous list of special guests and instrumental elements, the actual process was a lot more natural then one would assume. “It was a really organic process when we were writing the album,” says Mark cooly, “that’s my big thing in music really. We need the rock core and then the colours and the identifications are woven through little melodies and stuff like that. It’s that thing of focusing on making every little bit work”.

Track wise, although there is a strong sense of continuity running through the record, each individual track almost has a mind of its own, due mostly to Mark’s individual sense of inspirations and the unparalleled drive to create purposeful music. Of the last track on the record ‘Yesterday is Dead and Gone,’ it seems as though the interwoven and overarching influence of the patriarchy really propelled the track forward. “It was a wild trip really, I’d started reading a lot of things,” Mark trails off. But it’s ‘Language of Arp’ that really caught my attention. “The language of Arp,” Mark laughs through the phone, “it’s something we used to do when we were young, it’s just the way we used to talk to each other, no one else could understand us, but we could understand each other”. A subtle way to pay homage to those who have been by his side since day one perhaps?

After almost two years in the making, and after months of circulating though the digital charts, Sugar Baby will finally be brought to life this weekend at The Beaches, proving to be the perfect backdrop for the eclectic mash of masterpiece that Mark and his band have produced. Of the theme, Mark comments,  “We’re doing the place up like a cross between Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory and Fantasia… it gives a really great visual and the crowds love it, it’s what we’re really all about”.

Want to check out what all the fuss is about? Sugar Baby is live and large across all popular digital platforms but if you’re really keen for a wild ride, head on into the Beaches this Saturday the 29th of April for what is sure to be, a rocking good time.