Interview with the Klaxons’ Jamie Reynolds
Situationist Literature and Lady Gaga…This is a man after my own heart.
Three years after the release of their critically acclaimed album Myths of the Near Future, an album that delivered a kick-in-the-ass to the tiresome indie scene of 2007, the Klaxons are back on the road with their new album, Surfing the Void. With songs that boast sonic blasts and heavy dance grooves, and musical partnerships with the likes of producer Ross Robinson (Slipknot, At the Drive In, The Cure) and James Ford of Simian Mobile Disco, the Klaxons are bound to put on an unforgettable live show.
Here’s what Jamie had to say:
BYT: You guys have been working on Surfing the Void for a while now. How does it feel to be back on the road with a new album after a three year hiatus?
I think that the being ‘back’ on the road thing is a slight misconception as we only ever really stopped playing live during the time that we were recording this record . But with regards to playing it live, we couldn’t be in a better place. We’re sounding/playing better than we ever have, and we couldn’t be happier.
I think that with the release of 2007’s Myths of The Near Future, you guys helped enliven the sometimes whiney indie scene with a more authentic punk influence. Do you think that your new album Surfing the Void will have a similar effect?
Thank you very much. I think that we had a pretty do it ourselves attitude with little regard for our contemporaries on Myths. My hope for this record would be that it shows the younger generation of songwriters that you don’t have to own any specific equipment to write a record, and that you just have to write the songs and play them well.
You had the opportunity to work with producer Ross Robinson on this new album. Robinson has worked with some iconic bands (The Cure, Korn, at The Drive-In, Slipknot, etc…) What were some of the most valuable aspects of this collaboration?
I think working with Ross is the most valuable experience a band can have. He installs nothing short of complete confidence with the upmost support. He’s way low key in allowing our band to understand who we really were at the time of recording. I miss him dearly every day.
You have covered some really great and interesting pop/dance songs like Blackstreet’s “No Diggity,” AN AMAZING SONG, Justin Timberlake’s “My Love,” and Grace’s “It’s Not Over Yet.” I would think that it’s not a stretch to say that this type of pop music influences your sound, would you agree? Do you listen to a lot of pop music; if so…I’m dying to ask…what?
We’ve always stated that we were firsts and foremost a pop band. I think the pop end of the music spectrum is always the most exciting in a production and song writing sense. I’ve been completely blown away by everything Lady Gaga has ever done /said. I think she’s set a pretty high bar. Her aside, I’m really excited by the idea that underground sounds from the UK are crossing into the pop world and adding killer top lines.
Speaking of creative influences…I hear you guys read quite a lot. Any books you’ve been particularly inspired by lately?
I’ve gone back to the books that I used to enjoy when I was a in my early twenties and looking for answers. Rereading Situationist literature is getting me at the minute- Raoul Vaneigem’s The Revolution of Everyday Life is speaking volumes; that, and my grandfather’s account of his time in the services are really doing it.
Niiiice. That Situationist Lit really gets me too. (Spend a little time with the Situationist International here)
As you start out on this tour, are you really looking forward to visiting any particular cities? Any cities that bring to mind good/interesting stories from your last tour?
I think as ever, I’m looking forward to going to the places that we visit less frequently: Chicago/Seattle/San Francisco. Those and the idea of finally getting to Detroit/Montreal are really exciting.
Thanks for answering my questions. I’m super stoked to see y’all play here in DC!