Year Long Disaster

Interview date

1 Avril 2010




Interview Daniel Davies

"Black Magic: All Mysteries Revealed" is your second album. Does your way of work have changed since 2007?

Yeah. I think for this record we felt more comfortable, I felt more comfortable as a singer. And after we finished the first record, I thought that I knew what to do after. And I had a clear vision for what to do in this record. I think we have a more mature sound. So yeah, it definitely changes.

How did you share your work for this album?

Usually, the songs begin with a riff, and then we play to see what we can do with the guitars. Then I see what comes up with the melodies, the lyrics...

The sound of this album is a little bit in a nostalgic style as it sounds like in the seventies. Why this sound?

I think it can sound nostalgic, but for me, it sounds quite modern. Because the sound is old fashioned in a way, because the songs are bass, guitars and drums. To me this music, it doesn't sound old date. These are good songs you know. This band is great even if it sounds like in the seventies you know! (Laughs) So I think when you like a music, you sound a little bit like it, but there are other things that we listen to, that we sound nothing like, so... Maybe it seems that way because there's a lot of rock stuff, there is no keyboards, and there is no electronic sounds, just drums, bass, guitars and vocals.

Why this title, "Black Magic: All Mysteries Revealed"? Are you interest in the mysticism or was it just an idea?

I'm interest in things that we can't understand. But we have the idea of a book, written by Mikhail Bulgakov, and in this book, magic shows up. It begins when the magic shows up, it becomes darker, the money start falling from the sky, and the people are becoming crazy. They gathered the money; they buy all the things they ever want. They put on these nice clothes, but they become naked, their true nature has been revealed. They are greed. And I really like this idea. And maybe it seems that when something is perceive to be evil or sinister, the things build up to reform the believe in the human spirit. And, in a way, it's the same with the Rock N Roll rebellion, and was perceive as evil when the first bands began. "You go to hell if you like Rock N Roll, if you play Rock N Roll". So all these ideas came together.

The cover is very special. Can you talk about this special character, which is on it?

The painting is by Ted CoConis. We used his painting for the first album, and that's a painting of his wife actually. He painted it quite a long time ago. And when we went to his house, we saw it on the wall. He never showed it to anybody. And we asked if we could use it. I had the title for the record, and we had the cover, and then we write the songs. So I think the cover definitely inspire the feelings of the album.

There are eleven songs on this album. How did you proceed to choose these songs?

Well, we got a lot of different songs, we thought they were the best ones. It seems they fit really well together. We wanted to go on a direction, and we needed to focus on these you know. They are the ones we love the most.

Which songs do you really love on this album?

I like different songs for different reasons. I like "Seven of Swords" which is an acoustic song. It's a little bit different for us and I like "Stranger In My Room" because it's a kind of solar song.

"Show me your Teeth" is the single and one of the catchiest songs of this album. Is it one of the reasons this song has been chosen?

I think so. It's the record company, they wanted the catchiest one. But I like this song, so that's fine!

The songs are quiet short, excepting "Sparrow Hill". Can you talk about this song?

When we were playing that song, during the preproduction, our producer Nick had this middle section from another song, and we wanted to use that. It seemed it fitted into that, and then, we just ended after that, and to go back to the beginning of the song and continue it. That's how it came out.

You play the electric guitars, but also the acoustics ones as on "Seven of Swords". What are your different feelings with these two instruments?

I think with the acoustic you let the sound, and it's more sedulity. You have to play too hard and you have smallest sound, you have to find the right place, the right attention to get the sound you want. With the electric guitars, you plug it in, and then the sound is good or not. I don't like when you have too many things on the hand and can't use it.

Does the fact that your father is famous helped you or not in your career?

I don't know. I'm not sure how much it helped. I think maybe some Kinks fan have listen to us because of that, but if someone doesn't like you... I mean if they come to you and like what you do, then they come back, to see you again. And who is your dad is not gonna make people go if they don't like your music. I think that you have to deal with it, you do the biggest thing and you in business, it doesn't help in anything.

Yeah, it says that we have to prove more things in this case than when no one in your family is known.

Yeah, it's true, you do.

Are you completely please with this album?

Yeah, I'm. Of course, there some things I’d like to change: if we had more time... But I think for the time we have, it's great. Obviously I would have change some things, but I'm quite please with this album.

Why did you wanted to play the music?

I don't know. When I picked up the guitars, it just seemed natural. I felt comfortable, I can communicate without word, and somehow it was easier. It seemed to me, instead of trying to have a conversation; I just have to play a song. It's easier.

You sing, you play the guitars, what do you prefer?

Sometimes, it's nice not to sing, just being in the back and playing the guitars. Now, I feel quite comfortable as a singer, so... It's very different; you can plug different guitars in and got different sounds but, with the voice you have only one sound.

Your bassist is also the bassist of Karma to Burn. You will play with them, what do you think about this band?

It's great. I'm singing a song on their new record, and I think it's great! It should be fun, we are playing together now, doing different stuff, writing songs together.

Tomorrow, you will play in Paris. What are you expecting from this show?

I don't know. I never play here before. I hope it's gonna be fun.

Our reputation is: we are really into the music, we don't come to see a show, we live it. For example, we jump if we can, we headbang if we can...

It seems that the French pay attention to the lyrics. They have the passion. In America, it's difficult because people don't have patience. The video has to be fast and poor by the way.

Do you know some French words to end this interview?

Oh no, I don't! When I try, it's horrible! It's very embarrassing. (Laughs)