Pretty Maids

Interview date

08 Septembre 2012


Blaster of Muppets


Interview René Shades (face to face)

Hi René, thanks for taking some time to talk to us. I think you are in the middle of recording a new album, what can you tell us about it? Any news, suprises, a title maybe?

It’s funny, people keep asking about the title as if it was a big thing… :). We have different working titles but we haven’t chosen one in particular so far. As far as the musical direction is concerned, we’re not trying to copy “Pandemonium” but we’re using the same producer, Jacob Hansen. You can tell there’s a change in the sound of the band from “Wake Up To the Real World” to “Pandemonium”, and that’s the sound we’re gonna keep… but we’re not trying to do exactly the same album.

Do you know when it will be released?

Yeah, we’re planning it for March.

Before you recently joined the band, were you a fan of Pretty Maids?

Well, I’ve known them for a very long time. I would not say I was fan but I liked their music and I respected them. I’ve been a friend of Ronnie for a long time and I’ve actually played the guitar live with the band for a short time in 2003 or 2004. And well, we always kept in touch until one day I got this very short message: “Why don’t you play bass?”… And I thought: “yeah, why not!”

If someone who doesn’t know your music came to you for advice, which three albums would you tell him or her to listen? One for each decade, maybe?

Well, "Pandemonium" is great. Then, for the 90’s, I would choose a mix of “Sin Decade” and “Spooked”. And of course, a mix of “Red Hot and Heavy” and “Future World” for the 80’s. There, I think it would give someone a good idea of what the band is about.

Yes, it sounds good. For the 90’s, I would definitely have chosen “Anything Worth Doing Is Worth Overdoing”, one of my favourite albums from the band.

Yeah, it’s a very good one. Actually, there’s one of my favourite songs on it, "With These Eyes". Good choice. :)

On the previous interview with Ronnie, we’ve been trying to know a bit more about the origin of the name of the band, but he only told us that it came from Ken. Would you happen to know more about it? Why Pretty Maids? It’s really a strange and surprising name for a band like yours.

Yeah, you’re right. But I’m afraid I can’t tell you more than what Ronnie already told you. I just know the name came from a book Ken read. You’ll have to ask him about that. But, you know, what I’ve always found amusing is the difference between the name of the band and the titles of the albums. The titles are big, you know, epic, serious, like “Pandemonium”, “Sin Decade”, “Planet Panic”… and the band’s name is not like that at all. It’s funny.

You've been at the HellFest, at the Rockalies, and now at the Raismes Fest. Great, it seems like France is part of your live itineraries again. Can we expect to see you on your next tour once the album is out?

We’ll go on tour not long after the release of the album and I’m pretty sure France will be part of it. It’d be great! We love to come here.

How has your day at the Raismes Fest been?

Well, we actually didn’t really spend time at the festival as we arrived quite late and needed some time to rest at the hotel before the show. But it’s a nice place… good atmosphere, and we enjoyed the show.

Have you planned a blu-ray release for “It Comes Alive”?

Well, actually, there was one blu-ray made. Our manager has the blu-ray version, but I don’t know if and when it’s gonna happen. But I’d like that. I just got myself a big HD TV. I just don’t know what the plans are. It depends on the label, really. They didn’t want a blu-ray release this time. Maybe some time later.

The band has done an acoustic album in the early 90’s. Is that something you’d like to do again in the near future?

I don’t know about an album, I’m not sure… but I’d like an acoustic show, acoustic shows are fun to play and I’m a guitar player as well, so a special show like that would be nice. It’s a good idea.

A word to your French Fans?

Of course. Thanks for your support. Be ready for some more Pretty Maids next year. Be sure to check the new album out. We’ll see you on the road.

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