Monday, 1 March 2010

Elvis Perkins in Dearland Interview

All I have to say, quite frankly, is that these guys are awesome.
Their music conjures tears, fears, gipsies, and other worlds that we could never dream of….Elvis’s lyrics are not to be rivalled- beautifully formed and heart-wrenching. They really hit home, yet the songs still have the ability for really good listening, live and on recording- the musical talents behind this sound are huge. In their own words, they are influenced by “the sun, wind, rain, fire, the sea, gravity, stars, death, the night, Time, the planets, their moons and ours”. And aren’t we all.

Alas, a sizeable chunk of the interview was lost in the vaults of time, due to my disgraceful technophobia. It was really good stuff too. Never mind ey, just make sure you check these guys out!

(Elvis was sadly ill during the interview- he popped in for a bit…unfortunately that was the bit that got lost. But it’s not so much of a calamity, as he had lost his voice. And these three are LOVELY. So, B= Brigham Brough W= Wyndham Boylan-Garnett, N=Nicholas Kinsey)

What’s your favourite song to play? You all looked pretty happy during ‘Without Love’

B: It’s different everyday
N: I’d go the same way, depends on the night
B: Without love is a good song to do.

Yeah, I did notice you all looked PARTICULARLY enthused during that.

W: I love playing ‘Hey’, just because it’s a song we all play on the same level on the stage, and I can look around at these guys and connect them on the same eye level, its an even spreading of our energy which makes it a cult force. Without Love has a whole different vibe

It’s just so full.

W: It’s full, and a lot more reliant on the actual music as a pose to the energy.
N: ‘Without Love’ is more like a composition that relies on the music and the form of it, whereas ‘Hey’ is a parade of energy or something.

I think there’s pretty much a lot of energy in all of it!

W: ‘Shampoo’ is a good song to play too, because it’s one of the first songs that as an ensemble we sort of stepped into ourselves.
B: It’s one of the first songs that I think we fully realised as a band

You all play a lot of instruments, what are your favourite ones?

N: For me I like the fact that you don’t necessarily have to play the same instrument all the time. I love playing the drums.

What’s the name of that instrument you were playing, with the islandy, coconutty sound…

It’s used in lots of cultures and probably has many different names, a guiro.

That looked fun.

N: Double bass is a fun instrument to play.
W: I love playing the guitar. I think when I’m on stage there’s something about the harmonium, I love playing it because it’s just got a really unique sound, I always feel that when it enters one of the songs its special every time.

How was your tour with Willy Mason?

N: It was great. It was really good to tour with people that are close to us in age and experience in a way.

Was it organised through someone else or did you all decide you were going to play together?

B: It’s all done by agents

They chose it well then.

N: We’ve played with Willy before, in the States, so we knew what we were getting into. The people that choose, you know the people that work for us; our booking agent over here is the same, so they thought it would be a good pair.

Are there any shows that really stand out for you?

N: Shepard’s Bush was really fun


(General guffawing and chortles)

N: That was a good show

You had good Japanese food!...Wagamamas…

W: Wag-aahhh-ma- MA, yeah!

In America, what do you hear about in England as being the best places to play?

B: You don’t hear that much…I mean, what festivals do you hear about in the states?

All I know is about that big festival where Rage played…

B: We know about Glastonbury…

And I know that venue in Detroit where all the punk bands used to play, and the rainbow…

W: We’d heard about the paradise before, in Amsterdam.
I’d heard before we played there last tour that we were in Europe that that was a special place to play and it certainly is. I look forward to playing there again

Did you see the flower market?

W: Here?

No, Amsterdam.

No? Oh wait! Is it right on the canal?

It’s quite big, with lots of flowers…

Would it be there January/February?

No idea.

We’ve got a running theme of the environment…anything you want to say?

W: I think we all have a guilt complex about touring...we all wish that we didn’t have to consume so much gas being on the road. But it’s part of what we do.

I think its different for bands though, because its not just like you’re driving round a lot of places, there’s so many positive externalities to it…its not a selfish thing.

W: I mean we are 5 people that travel in one vehicle instead of 5 people in their own vehicles. And I think as individuals we are all very aware of what’s happening in the environment, and we would all like to help out in what ways that we can.

The one thing that could be said about your country as a pose to ours is that I’m hearing from other people, not as much form experience, that public transportation is a lot more efficient.

Where we live it’s awful. We live in a little village like 10 miles out of Norwich, and the only way we can get into the city at night has been cancelled. So if you’re in the city at night you’re stuck there. I think in London it’s a lot better though, in all the main cities. The Parisian metro is brilliant though.

W: In New York you can take the subway at pretty much any hour.
B: We’d like to do a train tour.

You could play in the food carriage.

(Here, sadly, lies the premature end.
Fertig. Acabados. Finito.)


Interview- Ali Hewson & Polly O'Shea; Words- Ali Hewson

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