In just over a year, Noods Radio has become the new Bristol favourite. Abandoning old traditions of focusing on fleeting trends, the non-genre specific station centres around both the founders eclectic taste and the exciting diverse range of up and coming local talent. I recently caught up with Leon Pattrick, one half of Noods, to discuss the rise and rise of Noods Radio.
Upon hearing the name Noods, feelings of intense nostalgia flushed over me and my immediate thought is of the delicious Indomie noodles that defined my childhood. After a brief chuckle, Pattrick explains the reason for the name. “When we were living together we were eating packets of instant noodles by the day. The term Noods is coined from this obsession and felt like a natural fit when we were thinking of a name. It sounded good and it wasn’t too serious,” he says.
He follows by delving deeper into the history of the station with a personal anecdote. Like most music related accounts, it begins with a fondly looked upon festival story. “The moment where we really thought that this was something we could do was when we pitched the idea to a friend in the queue for a toboggan run at Bestival a couple years back,” he explains. “His enthusiasm was enough for us to get ourselves in gear when we got back and start making it into something.”
“The moment where we really thought that this was something we could do was when we pitched the idea to a friend in the queue for a toboggan run at Bestival”
Expanding on his friendship with fellow founder, Jack Machin, Pattrick delves into their mutual appreciation of online streams, one of the key inspirations for Noods Radio. “We’d been wanting to do something together for a while. We had different skills but the same interests and values,” he continues. “What really put the idea of streaming into our heads though was watching Mndsgn’s Boiler Room, Breakfast With Ringgo. He’d stream from his living room with different guests just playing tunes and jamming out. No fancy equipment other than a couple synths and drum machines, but they were mainly just playing tunes off their computers.
“That meant no big financial investment to start it up and with how easy it is to stream video nowadays, all we really needed was a webcam.” Their DIY approach to streaming and curating nights is what makes Noods entirely separate from other similar initiates happening in Bristol. “We’d just collect a load of music during the week, put the webcam behind the fish tank and stream it from our living room every Sunday,” Pattrick adds.
End of the week parties hold a special place in any underground music lover’s heart, away from the wide eyed disinterested attendees, it’s a time where the focus is solely on the music. “Sunday parties are our favorite kind of parties and through putting them on is where things really started to take shape for us,” Pattrick says. “We held our first Sunday Sesh up at Champ Studios but soon after we moved them to The Surrey Vaults. We’d have mates like Bruce or Ishmael playing off the window ledge upstairs in the pub with everyone behind them just getting loose. Our New Years Day Sunday Sesh had most of the pub stripping off and white russians flying all over the place.”
“Our New Years Day Sunday Sesh had most of the pub stripping off and white russians flying all over the place”
One thing that does concern every avid event goer is the rate at which small venues who support independent and unsigned acts are being closed down. Many of the Noods Sunday Sessions are held at Surrey Vaults in St. Pauls, which is currently having its late license threatened, the same venue where their new studio is located. At the core of Noods, is not focusing on a particular genre. “I don’t think it’d be an honest reflection of us to solely focus on one genre or just electronic music,” Pattrick explains.
“That’s not the only thing we listen to – I don’t think anyone really does. Those original Sunday shows were mainly Jazz, hip-hop, beat music and krautrock. Our focus has always been on good music without a specific genre in mind, which is why we have shows ranging from experimental noise to Latin music. I guess what we don’t cover is EDM.” And why should they? Their community spirit is based on a mutual understanding of its not just house and techno that constitutes ‘good music’.
After their successful event with Tasker, who was the first person to comment on the live stream of Bruce at the end of 2015, Pattrick and Machin are currently planning more events. “We did a show with Gnarwhals, Van-illa & Pembleton last year which was a lot of fun. Everyone was crowd surfing in The Surrey Vaults on a Sunday including the guys playing. We wanna be doing more of that this year,” Pattrick says.
“Our main focus at the moment though is to have at least 12 hours a day of broadcasting by the end of summer without skimping on quality, so if you wanna get involved just hit us up!” It’s clear that Noods is centred around their friends, old and new, and giving them a platform. “We’re one big family and everyone supports one another. It’s brought a lot of people together.”
“Our main focus is to have at least 12 hours a day of broadcasting by the end of summer without skimping on quality”