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samedi 30 janvier 2016

Album de la Semaine : Savages - Adore Life

Adore Life

Interview de Savages, par Alex Wisgard de The Line of Best fit

I sit down with singer Jehnny Beth and guitarist Gemma Thompson at a painfully cool coffee-shop-cum-gallery in a desolate part of Hackney Wick, East London. It’s ten days after the terrorist attacks in Jehnny Beth's hometown of Paris – a fact that never leaves my mind throughout our conversation and lingering each time I listen to the album in advance of our conversation. None of us address the matter directly. The band are due to play the city the following week: by all accounts, it’s one of the most charged performances of their career.
The material on Adore Life isn’t exactly optimistic, but the almost nihilistic tendencies of their 2013 debut Silence Yourself are gone. I put it to the pair that the album, with its artwork of a raised fist, comes across as a defiant piece of work.
“I think you may be right,” ponders Jehnny Beth. “But we’ve always been looking people in the eyes, if that’s what you mean by defiant. It’s interesting to represent the contrast you can find inside the music. So the fact you could juxtapose the words 'Adore Life' to a fist raised in the air, it just shows you that you can find joy and warmth and the appreciation of life, and the desire to love and be loved, and all those things that doesn’t come that easy.”
“There’s always been a real intention to not shy away from the noise we would make, and to not go quietly into the light…or not go quietly into the night?” She laughs, trying to remember the exact line.
“Dylan Thomas?” Thompson asks her bandmate. “Do not walk quietly into the night…it’s Dylan Thomas.” “Is it?” Jehnny responds. “It’s Grace Jones as well.”
[A quick Google search pulls up the Dylan Thomas line easily enough – “Do not go gentle into that good night.” The phrase has never appeared in a Grace Jones lyric, though. It’s not until much later that I find it in her autobiography: “Those who know me, and are related to me, or close to me, have been warned many times by my actions that I am very unlikely to go quietly into the night, or into the night.” Modernist poetry and post-modern disco -  a very Savages combination.]
"I want to care and give my time and love to the people who really want it, and we have fun with that. I don’t feel the need to convince the world.” - Jehnny Beth
But despite the defiant nature of the artwork, the raised fist doesn’t seem to extend to its title. When I put it to them that Adore Life acts as both a command and a statement about the band itself (see the words together on the cover – “Savages Adore Life”), I’m met with about twenty seconds of silence. It’s an awkward moment.
“It’s a bit of both, really.” Thompson eventually offers, before Jehnny Beth continues. “Several people have said that they feel it’s an instructive title. I never really thought about it that way. I mean, I see where that comes from, and I’m fine with that. It’s not an order…but it can be.”
Whereas Silence Yourself was? “I don’t think so,” she laughs. “But [again] it can be. it doesn’t belong to us at some point. There are variations of implications for this title. But it wasn’t like ‘SILENCE YOURSELF!’ It was more ‘What happens if you silence yourself?’ “It’s not a definitive order – you can’t force anyone to listen to that.”
Thompson adds, “It’s a choice, it’s an idea, and it gives the intention for each record. Like, for the first record, finding a place where you are, and trying to understand your place in your surroundings and your context, and then to be able to build up from that, to work on certain things… So Adore Life has become the natural progression from that – you’ve allowed yourself this time to understand a bit more what you are, so now you think more about adoration…it’s a very simple thing about enjoyment – this is a more positive record, definitely.”
The development from Silence Yourself to Adore Life is genuinely startling. Savages’ debut was impressive, but very much sounded like a first record – the work of a band trying to find themselves amongst their influences. Adore Life is arguably the band’s first full-length that defines what Savages sound like on their own terms. Everything is streamlined into a concise, ten-song statement, veering from the oppressive swallow-you-whole guitar noise on death disco stomper “Surrender” to the dazzling balladry of its almost-title-track.

After Paris, “Adore” was the song I’d return to most frequently, something I’d blast at full volume for reassurance. “I know evil when I see it. I know good, and I just do it,” Jehnny Beth sings, pausing theatrically before those final two words as if she has exhausted any more complex way of putting her feelings across. “Maybe I will die, maybe tomorrow, so I need to say…” She croons, the band dropping out beneath her. “I adore life. Do you adore life?”
It’s a stunning moment, but conveys a blatantly positive sentiment – an existential joy - that’s rarely expressed in music. I ask them why they think so few artists come out with a message like this. Another extended silence ensues. “It’s harder to say ‘adore life’ rather than being angry and frustrated,” Thompson suggests. “It’s easier to be negative about things than to embrace what you have, and to wake up and be like ‘Oh, I’m healthy…’ - simple things.”
“It’s a really interesting thing,” she continues. “The fact that we play with volume, we play a certain way and push certain things. We can still make that noise, but still appreciate everything, and the people around us. We had to go through the first record to make that point.”
“You learn that from experience.” Jehnny Beth elaborates. “In a way, the moshpit is a representation of love. What Gemma was saying about loud sounds and the message of love can go hand in hand. It’s finding the fact that you can find joy in life, and accept that without having the feeling that you’re conforming.”
Savages by Jason Williamson
Throughout my time with the pair, I’m struck by the closeness between them – their ability to finish each other’s thoughts, to begin almost the same sentence simultaneously. There’s a moment halfway through the conversation, while Jehnny Beth is answering a question, when Thompson notices some fluff on the singer’s ear, and casually brushes it away. I rarely even see my friends do things like that, and seeing them act so casually with each other is a weirdly endearing moment.
But all of this comes in contrast to the brutality of their music; the decision to use the album’s two most relentless tracks –  the queasy amphetamine lurch of “The Answer” and the pummelling “TIWYG” – as its lead singles are a testament to that. When I ask about the canned laughter which punctuates the latter song, however, the pair start giggling. “You answer that,” Jehnny Beth laughs to her bandmate.
“I think because TIWYG was such a full-on song, it was one of these ideas where we wanted to push things to their maximum, and it felt like it was such an extreme that you needed something to let you breathe again. I think the idea of the laughter came from that. Almost like more of a human thing comes into that, after all of that. You almost play it without breathing.” At this, Jehnny Beth again breaks into giggles at the thought.
"Every performance matters, every performance is important, and you try to bring the same intentions and the same honesty..." - Jehnny Beth
A great deal of this intensity seems to stem from the band’s decision to workshop the material at a run of small shows, though the band insist that this is merely business as usual. “I think for the first record,” Jehnny Beth explains. “After four months of existence, we had our first show, and we had an audience from then on, but we were still writing the songs off Silence Yourself. So we were just used to writing songs in front of an audience – that’s just our natural habitat. For the second record, we were writing all these songs, and at some point we were like “we need the adrenaline, we need our natural environment.” Then we wanted to move out of London, and we like American audiences, because they like our loudness – they appreciated that, it’s really in their culture. And we chose New York…in the freezing cold. Like, lifting up gear in the blizzards. That was intense, but it was great. But it was natural to us – that’s the way we like writing.”
When I ask whether this may change as the band gets bigger, Jehnny Beth counters, “Maybe we’ll have a different desire. Maybe we won’t want to show anything. We went to see the PJ Harvey exhibition when she recorded in front of an audience at Somerset House. That was just before we went to New York, or just after, but for her it was the recording process that was being watched. So that was slightly different, but slightly insane as well. She came to see us very early on, and she became kind of a…guardian angel. She has a – everyone in the band has respect for her – and she came to the studio when we were recording guitars, and she spent a few hours with us. She’s very curious, learning all the time. Humble, generous…she’s just an incredible artist.”
Savages by Jason Williamson
Thompson picks up the thread: “Seeing some of the actual process…like Jehn was saying, we chose a specific time frame to do the record, and it was more kind of an awareness of doing it. Whereas with the first record, it was what we set out to do. We were aware of this time, and going to see PJ Harvey doing that was almost like a kinship. It’s interesting thinking about if it would change how you would make music – not being able to see, but knowing people were watching…”
Jehnny Beth, who has also been involved in a touring musical tribute to David Lynch over the past year, brings up a conversation she had about it with one of its musicians, Terry Edwards – who was also part of Harvey’s band during this session.
“There were funny moments, I remember laughing and they were making jokes. They were recording all the male voices, but she was directing them. But they were completely ignoring that you were there because of the one-sided window. [Terry] was saying that the only problem was when you really need to go and pee.” She and Thompson start giggling. “And you can’t! But you know, apart from practical, funny things like that…”
Despite the band’s stern refusal to allow audience members to film their shows with their phones, some video footage from one of the David Lynch concerts has emerged online. Taken from one of Jehnny Beth first public performances after the Paris attacks – in which she lost a number of friends and colleague – which took place in the city itself. In the video, accompanied only by Edwards, she’s singing This Mortal Coil’s version of Tim Buckley’s “Song for the Siren”. No stranger to covers of iconic songs, Beth also took part in a tribute to David Bowie at the launch of his David Bowie Is… exhibition in Paris, and tore through tracks like “Suffragette City” and “Life on Mars?” with gleeful abandon.
Savages shot live by Jason Williamson
Her version of “Siren” was extremely different, though. Perhaps even more so than “Adore”, this is Jehnny Beth at her most vulnerable and exposed, and she seems visibly humbled yet somehow scared – twitchy, eyes darting - at having to sing such an enormous song in the face of tragedy. She gains assurance as the song progresses, but it’s a marked contrast from her aggressive prowling when fronting Savages.
Jehnny Beth plays it down. “It’s a performance – every performance matters, every performance is important, and you try to bring the same intentions and the same honesty and the same…with all my abilities. Every time I’ve sang the song, I think the song is bigger than me. And I think on this project, the songs I’m singing are all so strong and beautiful - it’s like less is more. The song is doing the job for me, and I’m a medium for it to deliver the message. It’s not my song, so it’s almost like for a moment, I deliver and embody the music. So is it different? I don’t know…I don’t think so.”
"We just have one line that we’ve always said, where the music dictates, or where the music wants to go – that’s the most important thing." - Gemma Thompson
Aside from PJ Harvey’s reassuring presence over the album, another key touchstone for Adore Life was the dancer/performer Josephine Baker. A passage from a biography of Baker was read by Henry Rollins as part of a trailer for the album, which also featured footage from the New York shows. Thompson explains her influence on the album’s creation. “She was a really groundbreaking artist in a way – she wasn’t what anyone expected of her, that she could be a woman in that context and she didn’t have to be serious in a certain way. Or she could be serious in a funny way. She was kind of all things, and no one could name a particular thing… that was interesting [related to] the idea of talking about the things Savages talk about. That you didn’t have to be a particular way because you play loud music, you didn’t have to think a certain way because of that, you could be other things.”
Jehnny Beth once again expands on her bandmate’s point. “And the idea of savagery being good natured and open-hearted, funny – she embodied all of that. Those little lines [in the trailer] describing her dancing was a note of intention for us when we started writing the album.” I ask if Baker occupies the same role as John Cassavetes, who seemed to inform Silence Yourself in a similar way. She is quick to correct me.
“I read somewhere that someone said the whole record was influenced by John Cassavetes – 'Faces', 'Husbands', and the intro. It was just the intro – we never thought of the connection between the film and the title of the song. The character in Opening Night [the film sampled at the beginning ofSilence Yourself], there’s a determination in this character that is extremely inspiring. She’s struggling with what she’s supposed to do, and she’s supposed to play this play, but she doesn’t agree with it, and she disagrees with the theme. The idea that she trusts herself so much, and everyone is against her, but she would keep her intentions, and she was really down the hill with it, to the point where she’s completely drunk and she can’t perform and they push her onstage. All because of that belief – she knows that this intention is wrong and isn’t respected, and even if the audience love it, and the producers, and it’s going well, she thinks that’s not what I do it for. And she says at this age, she reminds herself of why she started doing this. So that was something we were feeling very close to when we started the band and when we tried, we were very careful to keep our intentions.”
Savages shot live by Jason Williamson
Once again, the concept of keeping their integrity as a band comes up – four people, united by their intensity for their music, and the ideas it puts forward. However, much like their earlier statement that Adore Life isn’t an outright command, when I ask how they would change the public discourse about the band if they could – they are, after all, about to release one of the year’s most confrontational, disarming LPs – Beth and Thompson once again avoid a specific answer.
“You can’t really get too concerned with how other people see it.” Thompson explains. “We just have one line that we’ve always said, where the music dictates, or where the music wants to go – that’s the most important thing. So if people think a certain way about it, it doesn’t matter.”
Beth finishes the thought for the final time in our conversation. “We don’t really care about other people’s perception! You can’t really drown people who don’t understand or don’t want to join in. I want to care and give my time and love to the people who really want it, and we have fun with that. I don’t feel the need to convince the world.”
Line Up :
Jehnny Beth
Gemma Thompson
Ayse Hassan
Fay Milton
Label :
Tracklist :
01 – The Answer
02 – Evil
03 – Sad Person
04 – Adore
05 – Slowing Down the World
06 – I Need Something New
07 – When in Love
08 – Surrender
09 – T.I.W.Y.G.
10 – Mechanics

samedi 23 janvier 2016

Album de la Semaine : Jennylee - Right On!

Right On!

Interview de Jennylee, par DIY

I’m guessing you’ve always been working on solo stuff as a musician?

Since I started playing music, I’ve always recorded by myself, I’ve been doing that forever. But I didn’t ever concentrate so much on the vocals, and I wrote a lot of instrumental music. I just didn’t… I never really sing much, ever, not even in Warpaint. I do back-up vocals, and sing in unison, to fill things out, but there’s already two singers. In a way, it was like, ok, if I am going to be singing, it’s probably something that I’ll have to do on my own. I almost did it out of necessity. I was writing music, and I was like… ok. I have to sing.
Basically when I started doing it, and writing my own songs, but seriously doing it, was a couple of years ago. We’d ended tour for the last record, and we had some time off, and I really hunkered down. I started demoing my own songs, and writing and recording myself. I thought I’d just put it out, sort of like demos. My process is like… I write a song, and it comes together fairly quickly which is nice. I don’t like spending too much time on one thing because I feel like you lose the plot eventually, maybe you’re forcing it. I was going to do the demos myself, I was engineering a lot of electronic drums, but I wanted to have Stella, and a few other drummer friends of mine put drums on top of the song, I didn’t want it to be electronic based. I’ve just had coffee, so excuse me if I’m jumping the gun.
No, continue!
Ok! So it started off as electronic drums so I could write music around it, but nothing was really changing, and I don’t necessarily make computer music. So I wasn’t making beats on the computer, I fucked around with playing live drums, and Ableton - where you can do a lot. It’s pretty complex to get good at, but it’s easy to learn the basics that you need. So I had a handful of things, and I thought, ok I can do this, but really, it was too many hats for me to wear. I just wanted to focus on being creative, and for the songs to be the best that they can be. I had written a lot of them, and I liked them, but I wasn’t super proud to put them on the record.
I wanted to take it to the next level, so then I reached out to my friend, Norm, who I’ve been playing music with for many years. He’s a drummer, and he has a studio in his house, and we get along really well and have a really good bass and drums rapport. I needed drums, I needed an engineer, and that just seemed like the perfect thing. So I booked his studio for ten days solid. A lot of the songs were half-finished and just needed fleshing out, but I just wanted ten days. A song per day? I just didn’t think, and then I ended up staying in the studio for two, three months. It was amazing, one of the best times ever. All of it is live drums apart from one song that Stella made a beat for. It was not planned to answer your original question, but I was going to put it out. I went into the studio for ten days, and just ended up extending, and extending. It was just taking it week by week. It was too much fun, and I was really enjoying what we were doing in there. We were taking our time with it, but we weren’t getting heavy.
Was it scary to put your vocals at the forefront of Jennylee having just done backing stuff before in Warpaint?
Yeah, cos you know what? I never really enjoyed or liked my singing voice until recently, which is when I decided, look, I’m never going to have that classically trained, typical, acquired beautiful voice. I did grow up singing, and I have a very powerful voice, but the tone…I’ve thought over the years of trying to find my voice, the voice that’s me. Sometime you stray away from it when you’re growing up and trying to find out what you like. You emulate people you like, or sing certain ways, and that’s never quite worked for me, because I don’t have tht kind of voice. My voice has got character, it’s sorta unique, it’s a little bit raspy… I don’t think it’s for everyone. The more I tuned into that, the more I was me, the more I enjoyed it. The challenge was to make my voice sound as much like me as possible. That was when I started to enjoy my voice more, and singing became easier, because I wasn’t so turned off from the sound of my voice.
The album to me as a whole sounds very jam-like and organic. Is that akin to the way that you wrote it as well?
It is. There’s a lot of songs where I didn’t want to get heavy, and I wanted to have fun. I wanted it to be really raw, and I didn’t want to beg or get hung up, I wanted it to just flow. I would say across the whole record, the songs came together really easily. My writing process, those things came out stream of consciousness. I appreciate that kind of writing. Whatever your first instincts are, whatever comes out first. I think oftentimes when that happens, that’s your best bet, cos you’re fluid, and you’re free, and it feels good. If you try to redo it, you’re trying too hard and it’s fabricated. If you can try to keep to what you first think… I try to always opt for that.
How soon will there be another Warpaint album?
We’re working on it now. Next year, it’s definitely going to come out next year. I don’t know exactly when. My record comes out December, though, and I want to tour it, and give that the attention I feel it deserves. I put a lot of love into it. Originally I was going to put it out and not do anything - I think that was me being afraid. I’m excited to go on tour and bring it to life.

Label : 
Rough Trade

Tracklist :
01 – Blind
02 – Boom Boom
03 – Never
04 – Long Lonely Winter
05 – Bully
06 – Riot
07 – He Fresh
08 – Offerings
09 – White Devil
10 – Real Life

dimanche 17 janvier 2016

Album de la Semaine : Indian Jewelry - Doing Easy

Indian Jewelry
Doing Easy

Interview d'Indian Jewelry, par Aaron Farley de L.A. Records

Having made a set of albums by now that’s probably more canon than discography, do you feel Indian Jewelry has earned yourself a seat at the barbeque table with other Texas experimenters—people like the 13th Floor Elevators, Red Krayola and The Butthole Surfers? 
Tex Kerschen (guitar/synth/vocals): We were heavily influenced by bands like the Butthole Surfers, Pain Teens, and Scratch Acid. We were into the 60s bands also, but they aren’t such a direct influence. The past is always around us, don’t get me wrong, I have older friends who were from that world. I worked one summer for Frank Davis, the engineer who recorded the 13th Floor Elevators, Red Krayola, and the Golden Dawn for the International Artists label. He is an equally interesting musician/artist/inventor, and he had a lot of great things to say about the time. But I had to coax the stories out of him. He didn’t have too high an opinion of people who drag the past with them wherever they go.
How is your approach to making albums different today than it was when you started?
I was a lazy kid growing up. So when it came time to improve my work ethic, I adopted the William Blake line: ‘The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.’ Now we make records faster than labels want to put them out. We learn something new from the process, and that keeps us going. There’s a lot of dignity in laziness, and I aspire to that for my old age, but for the time being I have a lot of work to do. Making records is part of that work. A canon seems like something defined after the fact. Whereas we’re still in the jungle. I don’t know if we’re there as researchers or hunters. I hope we’re not missionaries.
What was it like making music in Houston when you started out? How do you see it having changed today?
Our prospects as a band have definitely improved. I could tell you the name of each of the people that used to come to our shows in the early years. They much didn’t like us at home until we moved away. I know we’re something of a hard sell in the best of times, but we were aliens to the people that already knew us. No matter how far back you go in history there never was a time that Houston was ever innocent of anything except good taste. And that’s a good thing. That’s its saving grace. I love Houston, but I’ve spent most of my life there, so I’ve earned my right to hate it too. It has changed in much the same way the rest of the country has changed. When the internet goes to trial they’re gonna hang it high. I remember Houston being wilder. Ten years ago, shows were wilder. The people and the vibe were more outré. There was less adherence to genre conventions. Twenty years ago shows were even wilder. I wonder if the formula holds true as you travel further back. But saying all this only amounts to old man talk. Someone’s always coming up with something exciting. My priorities have shifted, and I’m a little checked-out.
The new album has been out for a little while now. What has the response been?
I don’t think anyone has heard it.
Why ‘Peel It’?
Peel It—like get your own hand into the mix, drop the veils, crack the glass, get bloody and metamorphosize, stop lying to yourself or letting yourself be deceived. Find beauty where you like it, but let things be ugly if they’re gonna be ugly. We changed the working title of this record at the last moment. ‘Sufi Headbanger’ had the wrong connotations. While we’ve been involved in some hairy things we’ve never been an esoteric or exotic band. Early on in the making of this record I was inspired by a film I saw about headbanging Kurdish Sufis. What’s more, the first thing our daughter did when she appeared on an ultrasound monitor was bang her head. But as this turned out to be a fairly simple record, we gave it a good Pop Art name that happens to be an imperative.
This album has some beautiful songs, like ‘Eva Cherie’, but it doesn’t shy away from the grimey stuff you’re known for either. How do you feel the new album differs from your other albums?
Originally I wanted to make something fast and dumb like a Ramones record. So we turned the guitars up. But intentions change. We’re old enough now to trust our intuition. We do what we want. We let things fall into place. Since we record all our records ourselves we make a lot of mistakes. There’s always a lot of room for improvement.
How and where did the recording of Peel It happen?
We started recording Peel It in a nest in the Montrose [Houston] just around the time that Erika found out that she was pregnant. Our daughter is almost two now, so this was back in late 2010. We finished the record a year and a half later at a place called the Texas Firehouse in Queens, NY where we were living until a few months ago. In the meantime we circled around the country a few times. We’d lost our dog and some loved ones. We reckoned with some dark spots. We ate a lot of tacos. That’s what went into this record.
You’ve mentioned not wanting to make an album that just sits on a shelf next to all other albums, which brings to mind the sandpaper sleeves of the Debord and Jorn book, Mémoires, meant to ‘plane shavings off the neighbours goats’, or the Durutti Column album borrowing the same idea. [And the Feederz!—ed.] Is this kind of what you’re getting at?
I love that European enfant terrible stuff, but I can’t say that I understand it all that well. The European avant-garde, they make a lot of noise about their exclusive art gangs and prickly PR strategies and closed-system ideologies—it’s like they never left college. I think the American underground developed very differently than the European avant-garde. It’s more inclusive and more pragmatic. There’s more of a ‘take it or leave it’ attitude. I’m speaking broadly. None of us went to art school. Our record covers are mostly eye candy. We want to be more involved in the ongoing and possibly imaginary conversation about the material and secret qualities of life. Nothing cryptic here. Depression and exhaustion are everywhere, but so are the possibilities of improvement. Invisible plans and necessary work. Like everyone I have to feed myself and my family. I don’t want to live on a commune or eat slop out of a trough, but I also don’t want to trade in the prospect of utopia for nothing. You’ve got to trade something for something or else it’s a rip off. Transformation of the entire human project, a handful of magic beans at least. Right now the human tone in our culture has been drowned out by the sound of what seems to be a giant totalitarian engine. I’m not an activist per se, I’m just a cheapo idea man, but we’ve all got our jobs. There are fracture lines in everything where the lightest pressure can snap off a corner of the matrix. Hopefully better sorts of people could step in for the clean-up.
That statement seems really hopeful. Lyrically and aesthetically Indian Jewelry often, at least to me, appear very cynical. How do you negotiate hope and cynicism? 
I don’t think we’ve ever really been cynical. Many times we’re totally in earnest. Other times we’re just fucking with the program. Maybe our sense of humor doesn’t work for everyone. Earnestness and sincerity are traps, just like cynicism and nihilism are traps.
The role of the artist—that ‘cheapo idea man’—in society has always been, ideally, to press on the cracks of culture. And though Indian Jewelry aren’t an ‘activist’ band per se, you do make very sharp cultural critiques. Do you feel there is enough of this kind of critique happening in music today? Who do you see contributing to the conversation? 
I’m not saying musicians or artists should be beholden to anyone’s program. But at the same time, we’re not shooting at the same fish as Bach or Charles Parker. We’ve got to recognize that the name of the game is one thing and the game is something else. I don’t have the perspective to say who is or isn’t contributing to the conversation. I would just recite a list of my friends and that’d just foster more misinformation and more clique trash. Most music going seems pretty dull, but I still have my favorites. The thing is that it isn’t just musicians who are sleeping under the boot, everyone’s got a case of the sleeping sickness, but there’s no room for that in a blog. Someone has convinced us that we don’t matter. So here’s the first question we’ve got to ask ourselves: do we matter? If so it’s a hop skip and a jump into a fascinating universe with room enough for both aesthetics and ethics.
In the past, Indian Jewelry has experimented with some radical forms of audience participation—like passing out instruments to the crowd. These days your shows seem less interested in that kind of audience reciprocity. What’s your approach to performance today?
We used to bring all sorts of percussion stuff, even guitars and effects sometimes, for the audience until we noticed a few things happening over and over. Some people can’t keep time. Some people bloody themselves in an effort to look tough. Most people stopped listening to the music and took the added spectacle as an invitation to behave in boring and obviously exhibitionist ways. It grew predictable. All in all, the fault lay with us—you can’t count on people to really shine when you put them on the spot. And then there are always a lot of dicks out there just waiting for a chance to act like dicks. Since we play in the dark we were giving them both the opportunity and the tools to hurt people, and, usually, we were the targets. It got normal for people to throw cracked cymbals at us while we were playing. Really throw them too, so hard that some nights the cymbals would be sticking into the wall behind us. Other people would be more passive-aggressive, they’d just break our stuff on purpose, you know, like smash the maracas or stab drum sticks through the drum heads. Then one night we were setting up onstage at a club in Houston. We had all the extra crap with us, but it was still stashed away in a bag when some dudes came up and asked me whether we were the band that gave all the drums to the audience. I don’t want to be categorical but the guys just came across like dicks. So starting that night we quit doing it.
Has new parenthood influenced your music?
My interior life was in a bad state before we had the baby. I was really sick of it all and it was starting to show. Now I have less time for bitching or trifling with my free time. I seldom get enough sleep, so while I may look terrible, my attitude is getting better.
You’re on a West Coast tour right now—what’s that like with a baby?
From a practical perspective it makes things complicated, because we have to bring an extra person along to watch the baby. But it is a lot of fun. We toured a lot right after we had our daughter. She wasn’t mobile yet, so she didn’t seem to mind much. If anything she liked all the company. Last time out we had a really close call. The hood of our van flew up and smashed into our windshield as we were driving down the mountains between Indio and L.A. We taped up the window before it came apart, but at any second it might have exploded in our faces. I have never driven so far with white knuckles, but we couldn’t stop or we’d have missed the show.
You lived in Los Angeles for a spell and used to frequent Part Time Punks, which you’re playing June 16th. Do you remember the best show you saw at PTP? 
We lived in L.A. for two years and we go back whenever we can. The best show I’ve seen at PTP was the ESG reunion show. It was their first time back in L.A. since they’d opened for PiL in 1982, and they played downstairs. Throughout their set Jimi Hey kept tooting away on a coach’s whistle from the DJ booth. Other favorites include the Boy Scouts of Annihilation reunion. And I generally hate reunion shows. Also Nikki Sudden. In greater L.A. I got blown away by Sixes at a downtown artwalk, by Geneva Jacuzzi at an unaccountably empty LA WEEKLY party, by DEATHROES at Il Corral, and by the 400 Blows the time I saw them play at a house party in Echo Park. The Museum of Jurassic Technology was like a second home to us. We put in a lot of hours dancing at Screwball, Ding-A-ling, Part Time Punks, and a lot of time getting weird at the Il Corral (R.I.P.) We have a lot of good friends there: Rodney, Ann, Jimi, Don, and a whole lot of dudes named Michael. People who made us feel really welcome. We’ve lived in a lot of cities, and no other place has ever been half so supportive. I worked all the weird jobs I could get. I’ve seen some of the darkness too, but L.A. is great—it just needs weather.

Line Up :
Erika Thrasher
Mary Sharpe
Brandon Davis

Label :
Reverberation Appreciation Society

Tracklist :
01 – Turn It On Again
02 – Charmer
03 – Inside the Shadows
04 – Nightsweat
05 – Intra-Body
06 – Do Survive
07 – Luxury of Regret
08 – Riding Cars Talking Trash
09 – Vast Division
10 – The Keys
11 – Calling Calling
12 – Lovely Rita

dimanche 10 janvier 2016

Top 2015 selon Rico

Dans le sillage médiatique du traditionnel Top de fin d'année, voici quelques albums que nous avons particulièrement appréciés parmi d'autres.

10. Master Master Wait - Modern War (Rockerill Records)

09. Correction House - Know how to carry a whip (Neurot recordings)

08. Brian Jonestown Massacre - Musique de film imaginé (Cargo records)

07. Boar - Veneficae (Lost Pilgrims records)

06. Diabologum - #3 (Ici Ailleurs)

05. Thee Oh Sees -Mutilator defeated at least (Castle face records)

04. La Muerte - Evil (Mottow soundz)

03. Algiers -Algiers (Matador Records)

02. Revok - Bunt Auf Grau (Music fear Satan)

01. Retox - Beneath California (Epitaph)

Top Albums 2015 selon Mot'

10. Dengue Fever - The Deepest Lake
Tuk Tuk Records, 2015

9. A Place To Bury Strangers - Transfixiation
Dead Oceans, 2015

8. White Hills - Walk For Motorists
Thrill Jockey, 2015

7. Thee Oh Sees - Mutilator Defeated At Last
Castle Face Records, 2015

6. Nite Fields - Depersonalisation
Felte, 2015

5. Future - Horizons
Requiem pour un Twister, 2015

4. The Underground Youth - Haunted
Fuzz Club Records, 2015

3. Algiers - Algiers
Matador, 2015

2. Low - Ones And Sixes
Sub Pop, 2015

1. Cold Showers - Matter Of Choice
Dais Records, 2015