champagne riot interview
champagne riot is back to the blog... now, with an interview!
they are a duo from copenhagen formed by caspar (that also plays on northern portrait) and anders making pop music that has the merit of translating in certain levels the strange – and meaningless – ways we're living our lives as a global society. It isn't the kind of music that throws the message into your face, it's their subtle approach on live (and love, of course) that brings this feelings into your mind when you listen to their music. they are incredibly successful when it comes to take life and put it in a song. Extremely up to date and modern.
at the end of the interview, you can get their latest release: a single called 'ingrid bergman', with vocals from the lead singer of northern portrait, stefan larsen. you'll be able to see the video too, somewhere along the interview.
01. how did you guys got together and where does the name of the project come from?
i was making music under the name champagne riot for a couple of years before we got together in the current form. after releasing the first ep on shelflife records i wanted to try something new and asked anders if he was interested in producing some of my new songs. the collaboration went really well and after a while it was only natural that he joined the project as a member.
the name comes from back when me and an old friend were doing songs and remixes some years ago. we called our work 'champagne riot' because that was the spirit in which the music was created. i adopted the name and used it for my later stuff. i've actually wanted to change it a million times - but just can't think of anything else to call the project. any suggestions?
02. caspar also plays bass on northern portrait, a band that has been causing a buzz on the blogosphere and most of our readers are probably familiar with. although i can sense a deep melancholy on both projects, champagne riot has a more uplifting approach to it. are you a proud melancholic? and how is it to be in very different projects?
personallly i have a weak spot for melancholic music. happy melodies tend to annoy me. however a song doesn't have to be sad just because it's melancholic. it can be a happy and confident song over a blue melody. i think those kinds of songs are probably the best songs in the world.
regarding the northern portrait connection it's just been really great to play in a guitar band for a change since i have spent most of my time making music on computers. although i would have loved to take credit for northern portrait's songwriting i have to be honest and say that i'm not involved in that process. i rehearse and play with the band and we've had some great experiences touring and playing in many different countries.
03. what are the influences that populates champagne riot's universe?
scandinavian pop tradition. creation records. eurodance. indie pop. a great song is a great song no matter where it comes from - we listen to different kinds of music.
04. creative processes now. what inspires you lyrically and melodically? describe pop perfection for you.
the whole mission of our project is to make a counter-attack on all the pointlessness and stupidity we are faced with every day. the stupidity in music, popular culture, values of the welfare culture etc. etc.
but the lyrics are not meant to be "direct" or "political" in any way - god forbid that, i'm extremely apathetic towards all that nonsense - but i guess that on some level they still deal with the frustration i feel about finding it hard to settle in anywhere. the melodies are aiming to be perfect. i don't think we have succeeded at that and we will ever succeed in finding "the perfect pop melody" but perfection is still the goal.
05. i've got to know you very recently (4-5 months or so), and the first song i've heard was 'champagne anthem' that i think is the best thing you've done so far and is an instant classic, a song that in 20 or 30 years will sound as contemporary as it does now. often i think about the impact this song may have on people for its brilliant description (almost chronicle) of a certain age. it couldn't have a better name because indeed sounds like an anthem. it has this 'song of a generation' feeling and it makes me think about the time when i was 16, 17 years old and started to replace - or better - rearrange my view of the world adding to the romanticism some reality. but still, the song holds some of the naivety peculiar of that age (that i believe never goes away). could you talk about the creation of the anthem?
as the lyrics go i actually did start writing it in my teens. at least some of it. then it ended up in a pile with other songs during my early twenties when i was too busy doing all the stupid things that the song is now about. and then one day i decided to finish it. it was all written very quickly. the first verse is about the past up until now and the second verse is about the present. after that we spent sometime producing it in the studio - but not as much time as on the other songs. it's without a doubt the quickest song we've done. it came quite natural i suppose.
06. what's next? songs, ep's, maybe an album on the making?
we'll see. we are currently looking for the right label to work with. once we've found that i hope we can get something out quickly. i think we would like to do a full length album. there's plenty of material.
07. do you get to live of music or have another job?
we make music full time. i think that's the only way to do it if you're serious. you have to suffer a bit to improve yourself as an artist i think. it's a cliche - but it's true. obviously we cannot make a living yet. so we need to beg and steal a bit to make it all work. it's quite miserable living like that. but at least it feels good to do the right thing. the money will have to follow sometime.
08. any song you'd like to cover?
november rain by guns and roses!! it's the best song ever to be presented in such a vulgar manner. try and listen to it without any prejudice and you will hear what i mean. i think we'll change the lyrics from "cold november rain" to "copenhagen rain". it could be a really great song i think.
09. name the perfect place and time to hear your music.
at sunset on a plane over the atlantic ocean halfway between new york and paris.
10. recommend something you've been listening lately.
i think emmy the great is one of the most talented songwriters of my own generation. only thing is no one knows her. the world is really unfair - or perhaps it just doesn't appreciate quality.
11. anything else you feel like saying?
download: ingrid bergman
(don't forget to check their new song 'heart stab' on their myspace!)