Pandapopalypse are a 3-piece band from Oxford, who formed in 2018.
Clare Heaviside – tenor sax & backing vocals
Rachel Ruscombe-King – vocals, synth, melodica
Stu Wigby – guitar, backing vocals, production
We play alternative dance / indie pop, drawing inspiration from 90’s Big Beat, but with as much live instrumentation as 3 people can manage. For fans of: MGMT, The Go! Team, Superorganism, Confidence Man, Fat Boy Slim, Moby.
In 2019 we released our eponymous EP to positive reviews (see below). The tracks ‘Glitter & Gems’ and ‘Be The Best’ received BBC radio play on BBC Oxford Introducing, and the former was placed in the top 5 of Nightshift Magazine’s tracks of the year 2019.
Our EP ‘Now’ was released 13th March 2020 with a launch party at the Port Mahon in Oxford (with support acts EB Hill, and Enjoyable Listens). This was our, and many people’s final Oxford gig before lockdown!
‘Make Plans’ from the new EP received BBC radio play. ‘Now’ features songs that cover themes such as career advice and life coaching (to get you movin'); hedonistic celebrations of all your successes; and being tired out (from all that hedonism).
We put together our songs like 90s big-beat producers: taking samples and building songs by mixing chopped-up bits together. The difference is we create the samples ourselves either by writing snippets of songs, or from recording jam sessions and taking the good bits. We record, chop it up, and then stick it all back together to make the tunes.
Our name came from a brainstorming session with some tipsy comedians. We were trying to combine 80s kids nostalgia (panda pops fizzy drinks) with something rock sounding (the apocalypse). People find it hard to pronounce, but at least it's googleable.
“a giddy mess of skronking sax, skittering beats, squawking synths and chopped-out guitar that party round Rachel’s pure, smoky jazz-folk voice”. “Never mind the apocalypse, the Pandapopalypse is here and everything is going to be absolutely bloody great.” Nightshift magazine, March 2019
“if there wasn’t a law against dancing in my house, I’d be up off the sofa in a flash” Oxfordshire Music Scene, Spring 2019
“what they most resemble is a gaggle of wild-eyed children’s TV show presenters who have been on the mescaline and Slimline tonic all afternoon and who are singing insanely catchy paeans to positivity” Ocelot magazine, October 2019