Wenn man nicht gerade Radiohead ist, ist es schon mutig seine Musik einfach so kostenlos ins Internet zu stellen. Also wir reden hier nicht über einen Song, sondern komplett alle Alben, die man bisher produziert hat. Wobei es mutig vielleicht nicht direkt trifft, aber es ist zumindest auf User-Seite schön, gerade wenn es sich dabei um so ein tolles Projekt wie The Papertiger Sound handelt, auf die wir zuletzt schon hier im Soundtrack des Sonntags hingewiesen haben. Dan Gelder und Kerstin Wilson, die hinter The Papertiger Sound stecken, sind aber auch ansonsten ein sehr interessantes Duo, allein schon, da sie auf unterschiedlichen Kontinenten leben und trotzdem in regelmäßigen Abständen Musik veröffentlichen, die zumeist in Skype-Sessions und mithilfe eines regen Dropbox-Austauschs entsteht. Grund genug mal nachzuhaken – Papertiger Sound im Bedroomdisco Interview!
1.) Band facts
– Name: Papertiger Sound
– Band members: Dan Gelder / Kerstin Wilson
– Founding year: 2007
– Residence: Norfolk, England // Nova Scotia, Canada
– Current album: Call Home
– At which point did you start making music? Had you been forced to play an instrument somehow or was it in your own interest? What was your motivation?
I guess I just wanted to be like Johnny Marr really. And Kevin Shields. And Neil Halstead and all the other guitarists I loved. Then after learning how to play like them, and how they got their sound, I slowly started to write my own material and work on my sound.
– What musical influences do you have?
Well I guess The Smiths, Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine and The Cure have always been big influences. A lot of New Wave English bands from the 80’s too. But I also draw from bands like Empress, Hood and Bark Psychosis too. I think I’ve always been attracted to bands that have a thread of melancholy running through them.
– How did you meet and in which situation did you decide to form a band?
I stumbled across Kerstin’s music on Myspace, and saw she was moving to Leeds and looking for people to play music with. So I got in touch, thinking she wouldn’t be too interested in my new project.
– In which situation did you come up with the name “the papertiger sound”, why did you choose it and what meaning has it for you?
It was relevant at the time, and fitted well. The name was decided before I met Kerstin, and I guess we might’ve been called something else if the name wasn’t already there, but it was and it stuck.
– Papertiger sound is, as you call it, a transatlantic project, as Kerstin is living in Canada and Dan in England – which good aspects has the distance between you, which bad aspects are there?
When we’re in the same room we do nothing musical. We talk, drink and listen to music. It’s the same when we Skype, we talk about stuff that’s got nothing to do with Papertiger Sound, and then remind each other that we’ve stuff band related to do. We’re friends who happen to be in the same band.
– With the distance between you, do you have something like a timetable or a schedule to organize yourself?
No, no timetable or anything. We just stumble through our week and make a date to skype when it works for both of us. The four hour time difference doesn’t help.
– How do you normally work on songs? What are the steps/processes, what are the usual problems of finishing a song?
We develop songs individually then upload the file to Dropbox for, in my case, Kerstin to develop. We’ll then talk about it on Skype, usually beginning with a no, yes or maybe to see if we want to develop it further. These days we’re far more brutal when it comes to throwing out songs that aren’t working. We’re much better at knowing if we’re just repeating ourselves, or just getting stuck in a particular way of writing.
– In what situations do you write songs/lyrics/which themes inspire you to write songs?
Events and themes don’t tend to inspire me to write a song, it just doesn’t work like that for me. It’s usually a melody I get stuck in my head, which i then record onto my iphone’s Voice Memo app so I don’t forget it. I’ll then make a demo later, usually sitting on my bed, and shelve it away for later. I’ll then listen to the music and write lyrics from the images connected to that.
– Could you tell us something about the production process of ‘Call Home’? How long did it take, where did it happen, what were the difficulties, how did you prepare for it? What was the best, what the worst moment? Most told anecdote?
I think the album started when I was in Canada staying with Kerstin. I remember sitting in her living room, staring out the window, just playing around with different chord changes and melodies, one of which developed into Fin. When I got back home to Norfolk I started to play with beats much more than I had in the past, which was a really nice change, leading onto some different ideas. We also had a lot of material to choose, so we spent quite a bit of time choosing which material to develop and which to shelve. I think we must have at least fifteen songs left over from Call Home. Usually we don’t go back to older material for the next EP, but there’s a song called Alone at the Airport which we’re really excited about, so that should appear on the next release.
– ‘Over The Fields’ is one of our favorite songs – can you tell us what it is about, how it was done and if there is a story behind it?
I woke up one morning, saw the sun streaming through my bedroom window, and thought how great it was to be back home after spending the last twelve years living between Sheffield and Leeds. Up to that moment, I think I’d lost touch with why I’d moved back home to Norfolk. I also remember looking at Google Earth images of Norfolk, thinking how beautiful it was, the endless fields that surround my village and the beautiful coastline, and how I needed to get back in touch with it again. How I needed to, metaphorically speaking, call home.
– You also founded your own music label to, as you mentioned in an interview, secure your music. At the same time you are providing your records as free downloads – how does this fit together?
There’s so much new music out there that it’s getting harder and harder to get noticed. So our idea was to remove all the barriers we could between our music and the listener. And the biggest one is money, so we gave it away for free. We always felt we needed to let people take our music home with them, so they could put it on their ipods or play it their cars, to give them the chance to get into what we’re trying to do. The next stage is to give people the chance to buy something physical from us, something limited and unique.
– What are your next plans?
Hopefully we’ll get the funding we’ve applied for to release a 7“ single or make a video. We’ll see.
– What are you doing if you’re not making music?
I do a lot of running, and follow Liverpool FC. One is physically exhausting the other is mentally exhausting !
– What did you learn in 2011?
Trust your gut instinct and don’t let anyone tell you some things are impossible.
– Your Top 3 records of 2012 up to now? Why?
Abandon by French Kicks.
Love and Mathematics by Broken Social Scene
Photoshop Handsome by Everything Everything
None of these were released in 2012, but y’know. That’s OK, isn’t it !? I’ve been listening to these songs loads at the moment. They were released about two years ago, which sums me up. Two years behind the rest of the world!
– Which song would fit to your actual situation?
I’m So Tired by The Beatles.
– Which song makes you dance independent of your situation?
Wishing (If I had a photograph) – A Flock of Seagulls.
– How would your “Bedroomdisco” look like?
Exactly like the disco in Pulp’s Common People video. And I’d do my best Jarvis impression to go with it.
Who did fill out this questionnaire?