Monday, 14 June 2010
Indietracks interview #16: Everybody Was In The French Resistance...Now!
Today's interview guest is Eddie Argos from our Friday night Indietracks headliners Everybody Was In The French Resistance..Now!
Everybody Was In The French Resistance…Now! are Eddie Argos from Art Brut and Dyan Valdés from The Blood Arm. The band is single-handedly correcting the mistakes of pop songs past, including defending the belittled blue collar worker from Kanye West's ‘Gold Digger’, and dumping Martha Reeves on behalf of poor Jimmy Mack. Their album ‘Fixin’ the Charts’ was released on Cooking Vinyl in January 2010.
Hi Eddie, so, when and how did the idea of ‘correcting the mistakes of pop songs past’ come up?
Dyan and I were driving home from her parents house, well when I say we I mean Dyan. I can't drive. I'm a terrible passenger and it's about a nine hour drive. The song Jimmy Mack came on the radio and I was complaining about how unfair it is to the poor chap. I think Dyan saw an opportunity to make me shut up and told me to write a response. We recorded it when we got home and it all started from there. It's fun playing around with other peoples characters from songs.
You’re a couple in real life. How did you find writing the songs together and was it much different to writing with your respective bands?
I think as a couple we can be a lot more honest with each other which helped a lot. It was also very different from our other bands in that one of us wrote all the music (Dyan) so there was a lot less discussion about how things should sound. It's also a lot different then writing for our other bands as this band only write response songs. So it involved a lot of listening to the original songs.
The album, Fixing The Charts - Volume One, implies there are more albums to follow. Can you reveal which other songs you plan to ‘fix’? And were there any songs you wanted to correct but didn’t work out?
There are a lot of songs left for us to fix. We're kind of thinking of responding to some Katy Perry. The one song that got changed on the album was the Archies song we were responding to. Originally we were responding to Sugar Sugar with a song called Strawberry Pepper, but I became obsessed with the Archies song Waldo P Emerson Jones so we ended writing about that instead.
Do you plan to correct any of your own songs? This could go on infinitely!
Would be a bit weird if I started correcting Art Brut songs. I'd look schizophrenic. Besides Art Brut/Blood Arm songs are already correct.
You’ve just finished a mammoth tour of the States. How did it go? Tell us some crazy US tour stories!
It went ok. It was pretty hardcore. We had a friend helping us with the tour managing/driving to start with but when he went home. It was just me Dyan and Ian with the three of us sharing a room and those two driving. We didn't have a day off and I don't know how those two managed the driving. Ian had never driven in the States before and I could tell you some crazy stories about his driving. But I'm still traumatised so I won't.
You've been painting postcards for every gig the band played in the States. Any plans to do an Indietracks postcard? We’ve some great scenery! Are you pleased with how your painting’s going?
I'm very pleased with how my paintings going. It's just finding the time to do it. I'm definitely going to paint some postcards for Indietracks. (If I have time.)
Last year, Art Brut felt duty bound to inject some punk rock into the festival. What will EWINFR…N! be bringing to the party this year?
EWITFR...N! are less punk rock, a bit more pop. We're almost a cabaret band.
We gather the new Blood Arm album is finished and ready to go – what can we expect?
I'm lucky enough to have heard the new Blood Arm album. I loved Lie Lover Lie. I like the new one even more. I'm a bit biased but It's fucking awesome. I've been listening to it since they finished it. I can't wait till they start touring again they're my favourite live band.
Now that the UK has come last in Eurovision again, are we a little bit closer to seeing Glam Clops representing us? Where’s the campaign at?
I think it's time we restarted the campaign. I'll slap some silver facepaint on, phone the rest up and get writing. It's our national duty.
Thanks Eddie - see you at the festival!