Underground Railroad - Interviews - Soundblab

Underground Railroad

by Emily Bielby Rating: Release Date:

So guys, how are you finding the year so far?

Mmm.... You mean the whole world-wide situation? Japan tsunami, diseases in carrots or God knows which vegetables, inflation, DSK making French people feel like massive perverts and the Royal wedding; makes it a pretty horrendous year. So just like Lydia Lunch says, the world is so fucked up so I've got to rock.

Did you play any festivals or have any planned for this summer?

We're playing at this festival in France in August and waiting to hear on other ones, too. Our album is being released in June so in a way festivals are all booked up but we're going to focus on touring in the autumn and writing new material.

Your new album White Night Stand is to be released on June 13. How are you feeling?

It's our third album, so the sensation of super excitement we used to have when we released our two first albums is not really here anymore, which is a good thing because there's no time to celebrate or rest on your laurels. We're super happy about this record, the songs, the words, the sound, the artwork and we're really happy it's going to be available next week for people to listen to it. The band is self -and doesn't make any money at all, we do everything ourselves and have to keep day jobs, so it's a gift and a burden all at once, because we're free to do what we want but everything takes a long time to organise.

You released 'Russian Doll' as the first single of your new album. Do you think it's the strongest track on the album? http://soundblab.com/content/content/edit/id/3853

That's what a lot of people say. I don't think so but I can see why; it's up-tempo and sort of repetitive so it's catchy. To me the first track, '8 Millimetres' is one of the strongest and one of my favourites.

In a way, each song on the album has a very distinctive feel and every song is very strong, that's why we're happy about this record, it really is an 'album' and each song counts, there's no filler.

How do you feel about the response you got from it?

So far, the first few reviews have been extremely good, the best we've ever had. Our last album, Sticks and Stones had pretty great reviews but the new ones are very positive. I try not to pay attention to them and not to read them, but you always end up reading one or two. What matters is that everyone in the band is very happy, proud and confident about this new record and that's what matters.

Which track do you plan on releasing for your second single?

'Gingko' /'Lucky Duck' (double a-side) is being released this week as a second single, and there's a cool acoustic b-side of 'Idealise' which sounds great.

Do you feel your music has developed more and progressed since the release of your last two albums Twisted Trees and Sticks and Stones?

Absolutely, each album could be a different band, we constantly evolve and grow. PJ Harvey says she never wants to repeat herself and we're also in this state of mind. What's challenging if you do the same thing over and over? It feels safe for a band to do the same album over and over, but the audience won't get surprised or disappointed; how boring is that?

What is the inspiration behind your music?

Life in general, people, experiences and the city. We left our hometown because everything was safe. Nothing happened down there. Everyone is the same. 'Metro. Boulot. Dodo' - go to work, work, sleep. That's why we moved to London, to get a glimpse of life. The number of distinctive personalities we met here in London is impressive.

Marion and I work in quite left-wing music pubs with art exhibitions, gigs pretty much everyday. (Indo, Whitechapel and Filthy MacNastys, Angel) so we have met real characters there. It's inspiring.

You toured both your albums intensely throughout the UK and the rest of Europe. What were the highlights of that?

The European tour with Nada Surf was such a laugh, 25 gigs in massive places in Europe - great. Reading festival 2008 was quite crazy too. Playing with bands we love is the most fun. It's like a celebration to have only great bands on a bill. Deerhoof at Ulu in 2009 was fantastic.

Which were your favourite venues, and any you would like to play again?

White Trash in Berlin, Maroquinerie in Paris. Bikini in Toulouse. The latest has a swimming pool and the owner is the chef so when you enter, it's via his massive kitchen when they cook unbelievable lobsters for the band. It doesn't really get better than this!

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