Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Pete & Mo Interview

Chart bothering Scots return with a 'dark' secomnd album and talk Lily Allen, the Illuminati and the freedom success brings.

The patented Prince ‘Controversy-o-meter’ clicks a little faster as Subba Cultcha settles down into the surrounds of the posh north London Hotel currently acting as a pitstop for Scottish myth makers The View. Controversy is no stranger to the band who only formed 3 short years ago in the wilds of Dundee, whether being denied access to their former practice rooms for driving scooters across the top of a bar or being denied entry to entire countries, a result of singer Kyle Falconer attempted to take up the Gallaghers Columbian Marching Powder mantle now the manc mavericks have grown into family men, The View are never lacking commitment to the cause.

Today we find drummer Steven Morrison and guitarist Pete Reilly in engaging mood, indulging in the delights of a London press day and taking stock of the bands meteoric rise following their 2007 Mercury Music Prize nominated debut, ‘Hats Off to the Buskers’ and enthusing about the bands progression on their vital follow up. ‘We’re just in a much stronger position to do a record now and we’re much tighter as a band, you can really hear that now in the difference from the first album to this album. I mean we’re, well certainly I feel I am, just a hell of a lot better now’, states Reilly with an effusively disarming honesty that’s wholly refreshing from a band whose debut album hit number one in the album charts. Following up such a successful debut can often be like trying to make lightening strike the same place twice, and you can end up looking quite foolish walking around in thunderstorms with a giant metal rod held above your head. The View though seem to have had no qualms about taking on the challenges that their success has laid out. ‘We took it more seriously yes, but I think that was just a natural thing anyway you know, with the first album it was just “let’s go mad2, with this album every sound was thought about a lot more,’ continues Reilly, ‘the first album was a lot more hearts on our sleeves and the second album is the more experimental, not experimental in the sense of deliberately weird, it’s just with this album we could do anything. If we wanted strings we could have strings, if we wanted to put a fucking kazoo on there we could you know. It was good to experiment on this album, because on our first album we were a bit set inour ways really and it was just punk rock, just stripped back you know, and this album is just a lot more fuller.’ Not that fans should be overly concerned that the band have descended into meandering, self indulged behemoth, first single ‘5 Rebeccas’ is an indie sugar pill laced with the dark arsnic undercoat of a harrowing tale of addiction. It’s clearly a subject close toFalconers heart and is proof positive that the band have lost none of their zeal or inspiration following the success of ‘...Buskers’, they will not be growing fat off the land just yet. The themes on the new record include musings on subjects as disparate as Aberdeen jail time and the hidden meanings behind the New World Order. ‘He (Kyle) just writes about what interests him but we have discussions about them, really stoned discussion, ‘no I don’t think that, aye I agree with that’, like the song ‘Jimmys Crazy Conspiracy’ the verses are an arguement with themselves about the Illuminati, so it’s an arguement about the Illuminati, which I guess you could see as pretty dark, but we have mad conversations about the songs,’ informs Reilly when questioned if the themes of ‘Which Bitch’ are darker than it’s predecessor.

Kicking off a major UK tour in support of the record the band undertook a warm up show at London’s Proud Gallery in support of ‘Which Bitch’s cover artist and band cohort Ryan McPhail. ‘He’s just our best mate’, notes Morrison before Reilly continues, ‘Aye he’s just ur best mate from school and he’s an aspiring artist, he’s done all the art work for this album and the single so he just thought as he was doing a show in London it would be great to get his mates up on there with him. We’ve only played a handful of gigs actually so far, we’ve just been playing fetsival dates but the new stuff, it seems to be going down better with the new stuff, but we haven’t actually played to our real fans yet so we can’t wait to get out there and hear what they think you know.’ Live the advent of a second album usually marks a defining liberation in a bands live performances, no longer constricted by lack of material and having to juggle that age old conundrum of short sets or playing every song we know, second album tours often see band sin a state of flux that creates some of the rawest and most explosive shows of their careers. ‘It’s pretty cool actually,’ concurs Reilly, ‘when we look at set lists these days and you write down all the songs and think, ‘oh that runs over’, so it’s good that way. We think we’re going to be doing half and half on this tour, so playing the singles off the first record and then the more upbeat moments of the new record. ‘ Following on from their UK tour the band are keen to finally get a crack at the States, their previous sell out tour having been cancelled due to Falconers visa being rejected due to a prosecution for cocaine. ‘They’ve just started the process agin now of applying so we have to wait and see,’ states Morrison. ‘ You know the singles getting on college radio and we had a sell out tour and maybe they’ll look at this time and think maybe we can let them in...they let that bitch Lily Allen in and she’s beating somebody up you know what I mean. You know the bigger you are, if you’re making them money then they’ll let you in.’

For those wanting to get an idea of what catching The View might hold this winter you could do worse than watching the new video for ‘5 Rebeccas’ and then timesing that by 100. ‘If it was up to us the video would have been mental, we had to tone it down a bit, ‘ suggests Reilly before Morrison cracks a huge grin, ‘we just wanted to break shit!’ You have been warned.

The view have released a bunch of teasers from a documentary 'Dryburgh Style', that will be included on the special edition of their new album in the new year: http://uk.youtube.com/user/v1ew06

Their single 5Rebeccas is out now on 1965 Records; http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=IM25965LbTw

Taken from the album sessions in Wales and produced by Owen Morris, the single will be available on 7” and CD and feature the B-sides Dun Deal, Mr Men Book & For You. There will also be a limited pink vinyl 7” with etched B-side which will be made available to those who pre-order tickets for the tour via the band’s website, www.theviewareonfire.com.

ByJonathan Sebire, www.subba-cultcha.com


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