Made To Love: Metronomy
Reeling in a fresh haul of fans with each hook-loaded single that they cast onto the internet, Metronomy have carved a deep groove in the electro-pop market in which to lay down their tastey, oft-remixed beats. With fans of the Karl Lagerfeld caliber, the trio has performed their high-energy sets on tour with the likes of Bloc Party, Klaxons and Kate Nash, though they explain that they're still ironing out the kinks in their live sets. Oyster's Zac Bayly caught up with songwriter Joseph Mount after the release of their latest EP Not Made for Love, noting the absence on tour of now ex-bassist Gabriel, and the presence of two new members.
How have audiences responded to Not Made For Love?
It seems to always be the way with Metronomy stuff- there's people who get it and people that don't get it. The nice reviews are from the people that kind of realize that this EP was meant to put a full stop on the last record, and kind of hint at new stuff. I think people like it. People sing along to the new ones. I've already started writing for the next record, but I didn't want to put anything from the next record on as a stop-gap EP. It's nice to think of this as something tagged onto the last record- not like an interruption to the new record.
This release coincides with the addition of two new members to the band.
Yeah well that's the nice thing- it's a nice reason to have the band written about. I still kind of recorded it on my own, but with the next record we've actually been recording in the studio instead of just playing together as a band, so it's becoming a lot more 'bandy'. It's been nice for me not to have to rely on my own pretty shoddy musical talents! Oscar's a master pianist and guitar player, and you'll see that on the next record.
In the past, did you take performing live into account whilst writing songs for Metronomy?
As soon as you record a record, and you spend all of your time touring, you begin to realize that the biggest platform you have is performing for people. It's impossible for it to not start affecting what you write. We've had problems in the past where we've gone 'How are we going to do it?'... but not in a bad way.
Do you feel like a new band now, or will your next record be a progression of what Metronomy has done before?
I think a progression. When we did our first few gigs with Anna and Bengha, me and Oscar definitely felt like it was a new thing, because we'd been playing the other show for more than a year. It really refreshed us. To come back to Australia after a year and have a completely new setup is very nice. I guess it feels like a progression, but quite a stark change in what we've been doing up until now. The people I love are the ones who do something different each time. There will be quite a big difference [with the new album], but not different enough for you to hate it.
What was your reaction when Gabriel announced that he was leaving the band?
We were obviously a little bit apprehensive about how we'd deal without him. We took it as an opportunity, and it forced us to change. It's a bit nerve racking, because we've only had three weeks to rehearse, and in that time we were kind of figuring out how to do it! We always knew that Gabriel would at some point leave us... so my reaction when he told me was more "Ok shut up- I need to think- what are we going to do?" What we turned it into, I think the majority of people feel, is a nice step up. There are a few people that miss the old thing, but everyone just fancied Gabriel? I miss university, but I don't want to go back there!
How does your new drummer Anna feel being the only girl in the band?
She's done it before. Sadly, in the world of music, it's very male dominant, so if you're a girl and you're quite good at playing your instrument, chances are you've spent your whole life hanging around men. So she's totally used to it! But I'd like to think we're a little more in touch with our feminine sides. It's funny seeing Anna in the band and seeing the way people treat her. It must be difficult for girls getting into music.
How does touring with an Australian festival like Parklife compare with playing at European festivals?
The kids are crazy! It seems like it's the place that kids go? where maybe watching bands is not their reason for being there. They like to just go there and go crazy I think. Which is nice, you know? There's nothing wrong with that. I think if you were to compare it to a festival like Glastonbury, then the demographic would be a little bit older and a little more 'muso' at Glastonbury. But there are equivalents of this in England as well.
Dish the goss on Parklife.
The only thing we sort of heard back stage was that 'Lady Sovereign getting arrested' incident. And that was kind of funny, because we hadn't really met Lady Sov. before, and we were sitting there having drinks and then one of them came back and said "I've got to go to court in about three hours." But we're pretty sedate backstage. We like to clean up! The sad thing about backstage is that it's not as crazy as you'd hope. I often get upset because it's not as crazy as I'd like it to be.
What's next for you guys?
In the short term it's New Zealand, America, Iceland, Brazil? it's a stupid tour. When we finish the Brazil shows it's going to be the end of this tour with this record. I think a holiday will be in order, share holders meeting, and then the next record. It's funny, because the tour's staggered around the world, things come out at certain places at different times. It kind of means that by the time you finish promoting the record, say in Australia, they're really ready for a new one in England. It turns the time you have off into nothing.