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Win tickets to Majical Cloudz concert in Copenhagen

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Montreal duo Majical Cloudz are set to play the Copenhagen Jazzhouse as part of the CPH:DOX AUDIO:VISUAL series and we’ve got 2 x 2 tickets to give-away for the show.

To enter the contest simply submit your first & last names along with your email address below, winners will be selected at random. The contest closes on October 17th and winners will be notified via email. 

THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED!

INTERVIEW: Editors

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I sat down with Ed and Russell, respectively drummer and bassist in Editors, on the first night of their new tour. When I wasn’t trying to explain the plot of This is Spinal Tap to them, we chatted about their latest album, The Weight of Your Love, as well as lineup changes and football anthems.

Hi guys, so how are you keeping sane on tour?

Ed: It’s just about getting rolling when you’re on tour, so you know the routine: you know exactly what time soundcheck is, interviews, dinner. You have to have some order in your life, you know.

Russell:  Each city is varies, but we try to head to a park each morning for a run, try and keep healthy. I went to one left and left from here, by the Carlsberg brewery.

You seem to know Copenhagen pretty well, but then it is your second time here this year.

R: Yeah, we were here really recently, at the Tivoli, which we just walked past. They had it all decked out for Halloween, which should be nice.

How was Tivoli?

E: It was a bit strange, because it’s open both to those who have bought tickets and people who have the family tickets, so you get old grandparents with their children, poking their nose round to see what’s going on. But we had a great reaction, it was a really thought out thing to do, thoroughly enjoyable, like a fete.

I think we did our job really well, people stuck around for the end of it, that’s all you can ask for, isn’t it?

Editors (Photo by Tom Spray)

I heard Tom [singer] talking about the difference between the UK and Europe, do you think there’s a difference in mentality?

E: Definitely, there seems to be more an attitude of “oh, we like that band, lets see what they do next”, rather than “ok, so what’s new?” [In the uk] there seems to be such a hunger for what’s big. We were on the right end of it when we first came out, as one of the bands they were really pushing, and we built a career kind of on the back of that initial promotion. So we can’t hate it too much, though it’s quite distressing.

So how do you keep momentum?

E: We recorded the second album very quickly pretty much as soon as we got off tour we went into the studio. If you’re on a hot streak you have to keep on it. Then we slowed down a bit.

The original four of you were music technology students, did that influence your approach to music?

R: Not really, we all met because we wanted to do music, but the course wasn’t very good. It wasn’t what I thought it would be and it didn’t teach you much, glossed over a variety of things in the music and business world. It doesn’t teach you how to mix a record, or how to fix frequencies between a kick drum and a snare together.

E: [Playing live] you just develop, and you don’t notice it. I’ve noticed changes in Tom over the years, he’s coming out as a front man far more than he ever used to. He’s more of the focal point, when in the past he used to hide behind with the band a bit more.

Editors (Photo by Tom Spray)

Has the new lineup changed your position in the band?

E: I would say that ever since the band changed we all felt we have more of a voice in how things are run and how songs are put together. It’s the most collaborative record we’ve ever made, I think me and Russell’s involvement is a lot greater than it had been on previous albums.

It’s quite a bass-lead album, isn’t it?

R: The mix on it is quite different from previous albums, which were a bit more chocked. I think this one lets the speakers do the work, there’s a lot more space in it. Obviously some fans might like that, might want it always noisy, but we get tired of that and move on.

R: Playing in a five-piece band, you have to know your place a lot more. You have to know where everything is going to sit and make sure they suit the songs.

We didn’t really have a direction when Chris was with us, we had a few songs that were around at the time, but none of us were really into it. Chris was well bored with the band and we were well bored with him.

E: We weren’t very good at talking about [song ideas] until about a year and half ago. We got into a situation where everyone knew things weren’t working, but no one wanted to talk about it. So to be able to speak freely in the band is refreshing. It’s probably something we did when we were just starting out, but as time goes on you get stuck in certain situations.

People like to compare you to certain bands from the 80s, are there influences of yours that might seem unexpected?

R: I don’t think we’ve referenced a band in a while, directly. We’ve all got big musical tastes and knowledge. We know about a lot of popular music. People think you’re limited because we like 80s bands like Echo and the Bunnymen and Joy division, but we have very broad taste. This record is quite different. It’s a bit out of time, I think all our records have been out of time. You listen to someone like Chvrches now, and I don’t really like her. I don’t like the production, the sound, so it’s not a route we would go down.

You’ve spoken about feeling quite liberated, but there’s a pattern in the song titles: “The Weight of Your Love”, “The Weight of the World”, “A Ton of Love”. So where does this heaviness come from?

E: We’ve always written songs about the dark side of life. And Tom has been far more ambiguous on previous album. Here he’s let his storytelling side out a bit more, talks about specific events. But even the good stuff is wrapped up in some sort of counter, some sadness or depth which you wouldn’t get in a happy song. It’s the way we like to write songs, it keeps us interested.

Do you have any lighthearted songs hidden away somewhere?

E: Yeah, “Back of the Net”, our football theme we made in rehearsals, about the time of the Euros last year. It might come out for the next World Cup.

You should, it could be the next “World in Motion” [New Order’s World Cup theme].

E: It wasn’t as cool as the New Order one…

INTERVIEW: Dirty Beaches

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In August, Dirty Beaches, along with an impressive selection of bands played mini festival Wasn’t Born To Follow at the Pumpehuset in Copenhagen. We caught up with Alex Zhang Hungtai (Dirty Beaches) to talk about his new album Drifters/Love Is The Devil, benefits of the internet for independent artists, the DIY music scene and more.

View the interview below:

Win tickets to Factory Floor’s concert in Copenhagen

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Londoner’s Factory Floor are set to play at Lille Vega, Copenhagen on October 14th as part of CPH:DOX’s AUDIO:VISUAL series. We’ve got 2 x 2 tickets to give-away for the concert.

To enter the contest simply submit your first & last names along with your email address below, winners will be selected at random. The contest closes on October 10th and winners will be notified via email. 

THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED!

INTERVIEW: Au Revoir Simone

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A new album is out with dream pop trio Au Revoir Simone. Here Today met with Annie Hart prior to the bands rehearsal hour. Among other things we talked about the time that had passed, the title of the new album, Move In Spectrums, and cover art.

Ten years ago Erika Forster and Annie Hart met on train heading for New York. They shared a dream of an all-keyboard band. Fast forward two years and Au Revoir simone releases their first album: “Verses of Comfort, Assurance & Salvation”. Another two years: Second album “The Bird of Music”. Yet another two years: ”Still Night, Still Light”.

It seems like a pattern, but no. Four years has gone by and in world of pop-music that is quite a while, but to Annie Hall it did not seem so:

“After the release of Still Night, still Light we where on tour for about 2 years. At that time I got pregnant, still we kept touring until I was about 8 months in. I had the baby and still we where playing shows. About one and a half year ago we began making this record. So much has happen in between these two albums that it does not feel like four years has past.” says Annie Hart.

Doing those four years Au Revoir Simone have matured as songwriters. Move In Spectrums is honest album stripped from any attempts of being “poetic”, Annie Hart explains, but finding a title for the album was a challenge. Erica went away to a meditation retreat upstate in the woods.

“The yoga teacher mentioned we move in spectrums with our feelings. It is not all black and white, you are not really angry or really happy, but there is kind of spectrum. You can shift yourself along these lines, between these feelings; you don’t have to be happy or sad, you can be in the middle or leaning one way or the other like a meter.

When she said that frase – move in spectrums – we where like ‘that is the perfect title for a record’ and we all started jumping up and down,” recalls Annie Hart.

Bright neon colors

A spectrum can also be a spectrum of light – like a rainbow – and the band where looking for excactly that kind of cover. Something Pink Floydish like a prism, as Annie Hart puts it. They had their eyes on Berenice Abbott, a female photographer, that worked twenty years to “prove that photography was the medium uniquely qualified to unite art with science”, but when they found out, what it would cost to use her images, they began to look in other directions.

During that time photographer Amelia Bauer and flower arranger Elizabeth Parks Kibbey collaborated on a project called Book Of Shadowsa series of still lifes based on magic spells. Especially one of the photographs enticed the band because of the way it combined flowers and nature with bright neon colors and black.

Au_Revoir_Simone_Move_in_Spectrums

“We and really wanted to do something with bright neon colors for this record becuase we felt that this record felt more alive, present and vibrant than our records had in the past. We wanted more a direct, vibrant sensation and we thougth that that photograph was just so beautiful and that it captured that feeling,” says Annie Hart. 

Move In Spectrums is released today (23.09.2013). You can stream it at NPR

 

INTERVIEW: TRAAMS

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Here Today: So I hear you formed in Chichester, sort of out of boredom. Why was Chichester not floating your boat?

TRAAMS: Well it’s weird, we did form in Chichester, but it was more about getting out of Bognor [Regis], really. That’s we’re all from originally, and we all moved around a bit, and formed the band after years of knowing each other. But yeah, it’s true in a sense, because there aren’t many places to play in Chichester. There’s not really much of a scene here. There’s lots of musicians, but nothing real.

HT: So it was like a reaction?

TR: Yeah, definitely. When we first formed we knew we would have to play London and Brighton a lot, and it’s good now that we’re going to other places. We thought the band might be able to help us escape.

HT: So I hear you’re based in Brighton now? How does it compare?

TR: Oh, it’s a lot better, for the music scene at least. But we practice in Ford, and we do a lot of our writing there. It’s nice to not be in a city environment to get stuff done. Brighton is quite distracting, it’s hard to not go out every night.

HT: So you’ve had pretty good feedback on ‘Grin’ so far. Excited about the release?

TR: Yeah, it’s great, we’ve seen a few reviews and a lot of people seem to be liking it, which is great news, because obviously, being a debut you don’t really know where you stand. We haven’t really gigged much, so we’re still figuring out what people think of us, really.

HT: And do you have a favourite track or something you especially like about the album?

TR: When we were sorting out what tracks to put on the album, we had loads of songs to choose from, so everyone has different favourites. Some are my favourite playing, some are my favourite to listen to… I really like “Headroll”. That’s a nice long one that’s really fun live.

HT: That’s my favourite too!

TR: Oh really? Maybe I’m bias because there’s a massive bass solo in it.

HT: It struck me that there are a few different atmospheres on the album, like “Flowers” which is loud and fast, and “Headroll” which is almost like a driving song.

TR: Well, “Flowers” we wrote in our first ever band practice, and we thought “oh that’s nice, we should probably do this every week. It was about finding our feet really,  we just wanted to try different things out, and the albums just the result of loads of different ideas that we had when we first started, so it was sort of by accident really. We didn’t expect to have an album where some of the songs might be eight minutes and some of them would be two. We didn’t expect to have an album full stop. But, I think it works in context on the album. Live, we mess around a bit more, and moving forward we might try to focus on one or the other approach, but I quite like the mashup.

HT: I heard that you recorded a lot of the album live. Why did you make this decision? And what’s a TRAAMS live experience like?

TR: We really try and be well rehearsed, and that’s why a lot of the recordings are done live. We also thought that if people want to see us live, we want it to be as close to the album as possible, especially being a three piece, there’s not much we can do onstage. Everyone’s got a job each, we can’t go crazy in the studio, letting stuff down and adding too many bells and whistles, but it’s basically just a loud, three piece band, really. Nothing out of this world, but we try and be really loud. Me and the drummer especially. We really try and tighten, which leaves Stu [the singer] to make as much of a racket as he wants. Wear earplugs.

HT: That’s something I noticed, listening to the record. You and the drummer play a really big role, you’re very tight and the rhythm seems very important.

TR: Yeah, I knew Adam before I met Stu. We grew up together and we’d been in a band together. When we were younger we listened to loads of Interpol, Vision, and Kings of Leon almost where the bass and the drums are playing the same thing, it’s like one band member. We try and treat TRAAMS like a two piece, in a way. Me and Adam are doing one job, and Stu’s doing one job as well, singing and playing guitar at the same time. Four sounds, but two members, in a very weird way. When I was in a band with him before I was on guitar, and it was like “why aren’t you playing bass? I know exactly what you’re gonna play next.” I can just lock in with that. That’s part of building the song, making sure me and Adam compliment each other to create one driving force.

HT: I really liked the video for “Flowers.” Was it fun to shoot?

TR: Yeah it was lots of fun to shoot. We just did it in the garden. James Burgess directed it, and he’s brilliant. He plays in Boneyards, but he’s done videos for Flamingods and The History of Apple Pie. We really wanted to do it with him, he came up with the idea, and so we just spent loads of money on loads of custard, died it green and threw it at each other in the garden. It didn’t take too long. Good job it was a sunny day, as well. We’re really glad with the outcome, and we just wanted a fun video. Hopefully if we do get to make more videos they’ll all be stupid, having fun. I don’t think serious videos would work with our music

HT: So the custard’s not symbolic in any way?

TR: Nah, it was quite nice, it broke some tension. It was quite nice to just being able to throw a load of custard at Stu, and vice versa. I think that’s the way we should do it. If we do get to make more videos it would be nice to do story lines, maybe even like The Lonely Island, where they’re just taking the mick out of life.

HT: Is that a big part of your band’s ethos then, taking the mick out of life?

TR: In a way, just not taking things too seriously. It’s just very hard to, when you’re doing exactly what you want. I get to make music with my best friends, and you can’t get luckier than to do what you want, so you just have to react in a way that says “this might not happen forever, let’s just have fun.” We can’t really relate when we’re playing with other bands and they’re all deadly serious about what they’re doing. You know, good luck to them, but I don’t see it that way. It’s weird.

HT: Talking of other bands, you’ve been supporting some pretty cool names recently, like Fidlar and Temples. What was it like working with and supporting them?

TR: Oh, brilliant. They’re all great. It’s nice to play with a band where you know the record very well before you even get to the gig. Fidlar were a lot of fun, especially the crowd. Again, it’s weird that we do get to play with band’s that are a slightly different genre but where we do fit in sometimes. We’re going to go see Temples again tonight, they’re fun lads.

HT: And the British indie scene is in quite a good place right now, wouldn’t you say?

TR: Oh yeah, there’s way too many good bands at the moment. They’re all popping up out of nowhere from all over the place, there’s not one particular scene. But MJ [TRAAMS, Hookworms] seems to be producing them all, so maybe he’s the secret… At the end of the day, we’re all just rock bands, but it’s hard to fit in a scene when all these bands are from different places. But it’s great when you get to play with them at all these different festivals.

HT: So do you think it’s almost easier to be in a rock band at the moment when you’ve got other bands around to support you?

TR: It definitely helps when there are other bands doing similar things, getting shows and things, but there are also a lot of musicians out there who are really pushing things forward, making amazing albums, but it might be harder for them to get involved, supporting other bands, or vice versa. If you’re making really original music, it needs to stand alone.

HT: So what do you really want the audience to take away from the album?

TR: Have fun, form a band! There’s no big secret with us, we’re pretty straightforward.

 

TRAAMS’ debut album ‘Grin’ is released on the September 16th, on FatCat Records. 

INTERVIEW: Scarlet Chives

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Scarlet Chives release their second album, ‘This is Protection’ on Monday. We sat down to talk to lead singer Maria Mortensen, about feeling cosy in a freaky way, a cabin in the Swedish woods, and naked people.

Here Today: So the new album ‘This is Protection’ is about to be released. Excited?

Scarlet Chives: Yes very much. It was very easy to make, but the finishing process has been very long. Now we’re just excited to find out if people like it.

HT: So where did the name of the album come from?

SC: Well the theme of the album is just about admitting that there has to be other people around you, or else nothing’s worth anything. So it’s very simple, but that’s why the album is called ‘This is Protection’, because other people are your protection.

HT: So where did the album start? Was it one particular song or event that triggered it?

SC: Well we’d been playing our old album for a very long time because it came out in Denmark, and then came out in Norway almost a year later. We started touring the old album again after it had been finished for almost two years, so we didn’t really have too much time to make new music. As soon as we got time to see each other again to just write music, people started doing sketches [of songs] for the band, and we just got together and made the album very fast because we had been so excited to make new songs for a very long time. It wasn’t like we wrote one song and it made sense to write songs just like it. We got together, sat down and wrote them.

HT: So I understood from your Facebook that it was written in the Swedish woods?

SC: Yes it was. As I told you, we had a handful of sketches, and all the boys sat down and did sketches by themselves, so they all had little sketches with them when we went to Sweden. We borrowed a cabin in the woods for one week, in Spring last year. I listened to the sketches through my headphones all the way in the car, writing text ideas. As soon as we got to Sweden we installed different studios in different rooms in the cabin and we just started finishing the songs together. This little vacation was all about trying a new sound, playing together, and finding out what we would like to do with the new record. But we didn’t really have to. We just worked with the songs. Separately, actually. All of the boys sat with their own sketches in their own little rooms, and I could go visit them making melodies for all of the sketches. In the evenings we got together and started recording ideas, and actually finishing the album that way. When we got home one week later we had ‘This is Protection’.

HT: So there wasn’t one person in charge? That’s interesting.

SC: No, everybody was bringing something. It was always a dream for us that we could make music that way, but it’s always harder than you think. We would always like to have a little democracy where everybody is just as important as the other. The only way to do that is just to accept that everybody’s bringing something. If you just sit back and listen, or shut up and play… We didn’t have to talk too much. We could just work with each other’s songs and be inspired by the ideas that somebody came with. And that was really cool. We’re all very different, we have different references, we can do different things… I don’t even play any instruments so I just like to respect the ideas of somebody who knows some techniques. That way you can focus on the things you do best. That was how we worked all week because we just wanted to be productive with getting a lot of ideas recorded that we could work on when we got home. So yes, it was very interesting, and we are very happy with the result.

HT: So was the environment important? The Swedish woods…

SC: I don’t think we knew it at the time, but listening to the record I can really hear that it’s cosy in a very freaky way, just being on your own. Even though there were six of us, there were not a lot of people around. It was a very small village, maybe four houses, and of them was ours. In the other cabins there lived men and their dogs, by themselves, just wandering around the house and looking to see what these hippie Danes were doing. They could hear us recording music. It was a very nice experience, but also a bit freaky, and I think that’s also how the record sounds. It’s cosy in a very dark way.

HT: So it’s quite solitary then?

SC: Yes, very much.

HT: Is that one of the themes that comes out in the album?

SC: Yes, I think it is. When I got home and listened to it it kinda freaked me out, and I think that’s when I got the idea that it should be about other people, because I was far away from them. The sound of the record too, is very solitary. Even the very pretty songs, where the vocals are in front, there’s always something very spooky underneath.

HT: So would you say it’s a record to listen to on your own?

SC: Yes. I think it is. I never thought about it, but I think it is, because there are many fragments there, many different stories. I think I get many pictures from it. I think it would be a good idea to listen to it on your own at first, but there are also many easy songs on the record, and songs that you can even dance to.

HT: So it sounds like it was quite an easy process to put it together. Were there any challenges that you faced when you were writing the album?

SC: Yes, a lot. I think the biggest challenge with the album was that it felt like it made itself. We had been very hungry to write music for a very long time. We were six people at the time, and I don’t think it was quite stimulating enough for some of us. We never really got to play that much, because it sounded good before we thought it was finished. We had been looking forward to working together again, the boys had been looking forward to doing all of those nerdy things with all of their effects, recording a hundred different ideas, choosing the best of them. And we never got to that, because we felt it was finished before we felt done working with it. That was a big challenge because it doesn’t really feel fair telling people not to play. So of course we had some discussions about that.

HT: What are the changes from your debut album?

SC: Many. First of all because, like I told you, it was made in a very different way. With the first album we all got together writing songs, even from scratch. The new album is also more diverse as everyone had ideas. It was not like that with the first album. It’s also not as noisy, but I think it’s more dramatic, colder, in a way. And then of course, we have all developed and got new inspiration.

HT: So you’ve released two videos from the new album so far, for “The Timber Will Fall”, and “Some Days Stay”. They’re both quite… striking? Maybe a feminist edge?

SC: Yeah, I guess you could call them that! The first video we released, for “The Timber Will Fall” was made by director Aske Bang. I came up with some of the ideas, but it was his video. I’m not a feminist at all, but we definitely wanted somebody to make a video for us that would work with the boundaries of what is accepted when you make art today. Especially as now things are virtual, and boundaries are not as wide as we were once used to in Denmark. I think that censorship for grown ups was removed in the sixties or something, and then it’s of course very sad for artists today to feel locked to certain rules when they make art, if they want anyone to see it. The video was removed from Facebook and YouTube. That was not at all what we wanted. We didn’t really think it would happen. We didn’t know the rules. We just knew that you didn’t see it that often, now we know why. We hadn’t really looked that much into modern censorship but we wanted to move boundaries for what was acceptable and normal. It was on purpose that we made a controversial video, but it was not my intention to be feminist. I never really saw it that way, I actually saw it like the opposite, mocking women for using their sexuality to get power. We really liked the result though, we thought it was very beautiful. The only thing I talked to Aske about was that I wanted normal naked people. If you want to see normal naked people, and it’s not in porn, it might be in movies, or in an art installation, not trying to reach a wide audience. We just thought that you would like the thought of beautiful, naked, all natural, normal skin, somewhere where everyone’s got access.

HT: Compared with where I come from, England, being so free and liberal about your body seems like quite a Danish thing. Could the video and your art be considered a celebration of that Danish freedom?

SC: Very much. That’s pretty much all it is, actually. I think it takes many years for boundaries to move in what is accepted, and we should be very proud to be in a country where you can just make art and nobody gets insulted. People wouldn’t. They might think it’s interesting, maybe they don’t, but nobody dies from seeing naked people. We all know it’s beautiful.

HT: But then again, you show a much more realistic representation of the female body in your video, compared with, say, the video “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke.

SC: Exactly, and I think we live in a time when it is important to remind each other of what is beautiful. We were shocked when we released this video, to find that some people actually find it scary. They’re afraid of looking at naked women, looking all natural. That scares me, quite a bit.

 

Scarlet Chives’ second album ‘This is Protection’ is released Monday 16th in Denmark, and Friday 20th in Sweden and Norway.

 

INTERVIEW: Julia Holter

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Here Today: You recently released your third album, ‘Loud City Song’. Where did this record begin?

Julia Holter: There was a song that I was going to put on ‘Ekstasis’ that didn’t really work, and I decided that it needed to have a whole new record behind it, and that was what ‘Loud City Song’ became. That song is now called “Maxim’s II” and I made this new record for it.

 

HT: So is “Maxim’s II” the centrepiece of the album?

JH: Not necessarily, but if people are looking for some sort of centrepiece conceptually, which I don’t think you have to, then I guess it could be, but I wanted to make a record that didn’t have to be about the concept, and could just be a record to listen to and experience, and make your own judgements about.

 

HT: Was it difficult to go from writing in your room by yourself to having an ensemble of musicians around you?

JH: No, it was really great. It was way better than doing it alone because I was able to get help doing the things that I don’t know how to do very well, like recording drums for instance. People who have years of experience doing that do it so well. It makes a huge different having players play the parts, instead of just me playing everything on keyboard.

Julia Holter live

HT: When I listened to the record I got a sense that it was about feelings of intimidation in the city. Was that intentional?

JH: Yes, it’s kind of like the individual feeling bombarded by society.

HT: Is the city an intimidating place to be then?

JH: For me it’s not, I love the city, but it was more abstract. The city was a way to physically place society.

HT: Like a metaphor?

JH: Yeah exactly. The record’s more a story than a political commentary. It’s sort of like a coming of age story. There are elements of contemporary celebrity culture, like on “Maxim’s II”. I think that’s a kind of a tangent, but I do think that’s a way to look at it. So it’s not specifically anything about society, it’s not like I made a record about the problems of society, it’s more just a coming of age story about an individual in society making different decisions, like running away from society or staying in it. You can interpret it any way you want. In Gigi’s case, she’s expected to become a courtesan by her family, and she doesn’t want to do that. It could be anything; in the record there are different hints about what it could be, like being chased by paparazzi, or you could be a celebrity that’s always being spied on.

 

HT: There are lots of different emotions, atmospheres and sounds on the record. Why did you choose to put them all on one album?

JH: I don’t think I thought much about it. I basically had a story, and I let myself go free with whatever music fit each song. I wasn’t thinking, “well this song is going to be jazzy, and this one will be a soaring, dream experience song.” I have an idea of what’s going on in the song, and the music emerges out of that. It was all in my demos. Everything you hear atmosphere-wise was present in my demos when I made them at home, in a much cruder form than they are now. So it just sort of comes out of you and you don’t have a way of explaining it. I get people asking me “why is it jazzy?” and I have no explanation. It was like that in the demos; it’s not as if I got jazz players and it suddenly became jazzy, it just was. It wasn’t a conscious decision or style.

 

HT: So the story is what really guides you when you’re writing the music?

JH: Yeah, a lot of times it is, whether it’s for the album, or even on ‘Ekstasis’, which doesn’t have a concept, it’s just a collection of different songs, united by certain general things, each song has something of a story or a situation between characters. I build off that and don’t think about the musical genres.

HT: Do you think you get a better song if it’s naturally crafted?

JH: I think it’s the only way I can write. I don’t think about, “is this the right way?” it’s just the only way for me. I mean, there are always exceptions. I can probably think of a some times when I listened to a piece of music and then wanted to work off some musical ideas. “Maxim’s I” for instance was more complicated. When I wrote it I already had “Maxim’s II” which was then just “Maxim’s”, and then one day I was playing the keyboard and I really liked some chords that I was playing. It just came to me that he lyrics for “Maxim’s” could work for those chords as well. So sometimes it does just start with the music and the music creates the story itself.

 

HT: And do you have a favourite song in particular from the album?

JH: I don’t have one favourite, it changes. Recently it’s been “Maxim’s I”. It’s a really tricky one, and it took a long time to make, to mix and produce because the interaction between the acoustic instruments and the electronic was really tricky to master. Not literally, but figuratively, to get them balanced.

 

HT: Do you always write your music in the same frame of mind?

JH: Generally I just have to be really clear headed. If I’m being very creative I like the mornings, but if I want to get some technical stuff done the nighttime is good because I get kind of obsessive. But I do write in front of the computer sometimes, and I get distracted. I shift back and forth and walk around outside. It’s not like I’m sitting there for hours and hours.  But I can’t be drunk when I write, whereas I like having one drink when I perform.

Julia Holter live

HT: So I hear you used to do tutoring part time.

JH: Yeah, it was a job and I worked in High Schools. So many high school students today are so hip, they’re into all different types of music. It was very inspiring to work with some of them on music, recording etc.

 

HT: Did they ever ask you for advice?

JH: Yeah definitely. It takes a long time to get their trust, but when my music first started to get attention, it was really inspiring to them. They actually respected me more after that, which was funny. I think I was more of a mentor than a teacher. A tutor is always in that awkward, in-between place. College applications or life questions, homework, I helped them with that. Or even showing them cool music to listen to, and writing music.

 

HT: Did they ever inspire your writing?

JH: Well I didn’t write songs about them, but like everything in my life, it comes through somehow, indirectly. You have emotions and interactions in life, and that’s the only way you can be a writer. To draw on those experiences.

 

Loud City Song is out now on Domino Records. (Photos by Tom Spray)

INTERVIEW: Schultz and Forever

in Blog/Uncategorized by

Schultz and Forever have been nominated in the ‘Politiken IBYEN Awards 2013’ in the category ‘The Year’s Upcoming’ which shines light on 5 Danish acts that have gained hype over the past year and are about to break. Below is Schultz and Forever’s interview video made by the Here Today team for said award which also features two tracks from his recent session with us both ‘Half A Man’ and ‘Sociopathic Youth’.

Also nominated in the same category Jetsi Kain, you can view the session we recorded with them last summer HERE

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