Am Freitag erscheint mit Blood Red Shoes das vierte Studioalbum der gleichnamigen Band aus Brighton. Ich konnte schon einmal reinhören und kann die zwölf Tracks durchaus empfehlen, auch wenn ich persönlich den Vorgänger des Duos bestehend aus Laura-Mary Carter und Steven Ansell etwas stärker empfand.
It’s both – brutal and beautiful
Im Interview gibt mir Drummer Steven Ansell Rede und Antwort und beschreibt, wie es war, das erste Mal komplett alleine ein Album zu produzieren, was die beiden an Berlin so toll finden und wieso der Sound bei einer Halle mit über 2.000 Leuten Fassungsvermögen irgendwie nicht mehr so geil ist…
„Fuck man, we’re just lucky to be here still!“
Is your passion for music as huge as Ginger Rogers passion for dance?
Yeah it is. We’re pretty much incapable of stopping making music, when we’re not touring we’re writing or recording, there’s never really been a break now in about 7 years.
On friday your forth studio album will be released – you are by far no newcomer act anymore. How do you feel about the new album?
It’s a strange feeling having been around so long because on one hand we feel like we’re really growing into our sound and finding ourselves, and getting better at articulating what we’re trying to do with our music, but on the other hand, you think „fuck man, we’re just lucky to be here still!“. I think there’s a sense of that in this album, there’s a positivity and confidence which is partly due to the fact that we’ve lasted so long as we’re kind of at home with ourselves. It’s enabled us to make the record like this, something which is very much a pop record at its heart, but one which takes a lot of risks with the sounds and performances. For me, it’s the closest we’ve ever come to the sound in my head, and it’s definitely some of the best songs we’ve ever written.
„Being a bit outside the norm“
Alternative, indie, grunge, rock – we all hate this stereotyped thinking, but how do you describe your music?
All of those phrases have some relevance I guess. At heart I always think of us as a punk rock band, because our approach and ethos is very much about that independent streak, about being a bit outside the norm and retaining the rebellious spirit that’s so important to music.
In my review for „In Time To Voices“ I was really positive about the evolution of your sound, there being more diversification as on the other albums. „Blood Red Shoes“ now goes back to the raw sounds of your beginnings – what was the reason for that?
This album doesn’t go back to the raw sounds of our beginnings. Our first album sounds much more produced and perfect than this album, and is less diverse than this. This is by far the most „raw“ sounding album we’ve made. It has the diversity of styles and themes like our 3rd album but we’ve recorded it in a very different way, a much more punk rock, scruffy, naked way. We have songs like „Stranger“, „Far Away“ and „Tight Wire“ which are all very layered songs, with much more reflective and melancholy feel to them, and not centred on guitars… They remind me of the kind of things we were doing on „In Time To Voices“. But then we also have some straight up scuzzy rock songs which are much harder, faster and more aggressive than anything on our first two albums. This album for us was about taking all the things we’d learnt over the past three albums and bringing them together a bit, but crucially, capturing them in a really tough and mean sounding way, so it’s both – brutal and beautiful.
„4am and you feel like playing some piano, no problem“
You named this album after the band because it is the first you did produce on your own. How did the process differ to the albums before?
It was totally different… We had no schedule whatsoever. We could record for 48 hours straight if we wanted, or we could just go out into Berlin and hang out for a few days. There was no producer and no engineer, so nobody else was giving us feedback on anything at all, it was totally our choice which take of the song we liked the most, what sounds were used, and the process of getting the sounds right was all just us. So in one sense, it was the most work because we had to do everything and we had to trust our own judgement on what was good and bad without getting a third opinion. But on the other hand it was such a liberating experience, being able to record whatever we wanted, maybe it was 4am and you feel like playing some piano, no problem. One day we just felt like doing something else so we went and broke into the old Spreepark instead of being in the studio. We couldn’t do any of that stuff on our previous albums!