Jake Griffiths interviews Dan from Bristol duo Meadowlark ahead of their show at The Moon, Cardiff on October 10th.
In my swollen-faced, vulnerable and sleep deprived state I made a phone call to Dan from Meadowlark. We had an open and honest conversation about the music industry.
He had drunk a lot of coffee and me a lot of warm squash. What follows is my scrawled notes from that conversation.
I listened to your alternative versions, how does the recording process change a song?
We are very aware of production and are open to experimentation. We wanted to see our songs in a different light. We have experimented with analog equipment, the closest to digital, putting piano loops recorded on MP3 recorders through pedals. We are always interested in expanding.
Would you make a space funk album?
Yes, that’s the direction for the next one. Nah, we will try things out but not go to far from our route.
Are there songs you have written that didn’t work for the group but you love?
I started producing music using Logic awhile ago… and sometimes they just don’t work with this group. But I love the songs but they don’t fit.
What is the story behind Postcards?
We wrote that after being inspired by Walk The Line, it doesn’t sound like a Johnny Cash song but we wrote and recorded it in a drunken haze. The album version is the demo we recorded that day.
I was impressed by the direction of your music videos
I love film and studied it, I have directed every music video but one. People ask me which one I’m going to choose. I love them both.
What inspired you to start writing songs?
I wanted to write songs from the first time I heard Smells Like Teen Spirit.
How did you feel about Montage of Heck?
I didn’t know what to feel, his friend said his notes were his dark humour.
Musicians seem to have a negative view of Spotify in general, is this something you have?
I would be a hypocrite if I said “yes”, Spotify has been great for us. We wouldn’t be as popular without it.
Is there a song that happened and you just love in every way?
Postcards, it is great. We really did something. I’m proud of that one.
The aim of a producer should be to allow the artist to be themselves; have you felt pressure in changing yourself or the band?
Not from an outside source, internally, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to write a certain type of song. But I’ve relaxed about it.
Is there any part of the internet that you find difficult?
The only issue with the internet is the amount of music out there, gaining an audience is difficult and we worked hard but it is an accident. I believe we are getting back to a music that doesn’t cut out the mistakes.
I gave my polite thanks, hung up the phone and went back to sleep.
If you would like to see them live then Meadowlarks are playing at The Moon, Womanby Street, Cardiff on Tuesday 10th October 2017. Their debut album Postcards is out now.
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