Saarbrücken, Germany’s BABY LOU have just released their new album “Stagediving Into Total Darkness” and I managed to catch them right before their crossing the equator on their way to Brazil. Now they’re back from the road, ready to commence their plans and continue the crazy party they host.
Standing against divisions that break music “scenes” apart, they create energetic, powerful instrumental sound that will have you on your feet joining the party on the dance floor! Perfect for all the THE BLOOD BROTHERS fans and enthusiasts of passionate and really creative rock music. See and hear for yourself!
Hey neighbors! :) What’s up? How are things going?
“We´re under stress again and it has always been that way “ to say it in a kinda MILLENCOLinish way! But, you know what? The formation of natural diamonds receives very high temperatures and pressures. I´m just kidding…We´re very busy at the time and that´s why I’m answering your questions while sitting inside an airplane going straight from Amsterdam to Sao Paulo now. Everything happened so damn fast during the last couple of month and we couldn´t even find the time for things like that, so sorry for being a bit late with the interview. We were shooting 2 videos , took care of the new artwork, did some furious touring in the meantime and finally released the new record “Stagediving Into Total Darkness”. So you see 2013 was pretty packed but we´re in a good mood and very grateful for all the support we receive lately from all over the world. It feels just great.
Yeah man! “Stagediving Into Total Darkness” – that’s one hell of a name for an album and it fits so well to the party set of songs you’ve decided to include on the record :) Tell me about the idea behind it.
Yeah! That`s quite easy. “Stagediving Into Total Darkness” is mainly about taking a step into the unknown. The title definitely paints the picture of a situation in which you just let go not knowing if somebody or something is gonna catch you or not. Since we started touring that much with the band we often had to deal with situations like that. But that keeps your blood pumping and the whole thing fresh and new. On the other hand I think our album title has something in common with the latest SPERMBIRDS album title but only if you wanna see that whole thing a little bit more positive. Their album is called “The Columbus Feeling” and it actually reminds me a bit of our album title.
There are a bunch of electro-pop inspired sounds that make the whole thing really interesting and creative. I mean, it doesn’t sound like a crappy poppy shit that’s being promoted so much these days. What are some of the inspirations behind your music and how do you run a creative process to end up with such crazy mixture and, still, a nice alternative effect.
Maybe one reason why our electro parts sound a bit different is that we don`t use pre-designed plug ins and stuff like that. We really play the parts by ourself on old casio keyboards or old analog synthies. a lot of noises and sounds you here on the record were recorded on the road. In my opinion these special field recordings are typical for our new album. We recorded all kinds of weird stuff during our BL(U)FF tour last year in Austria, Hungary, Transylvania, Czech Republic and Luxemburg. There are not that many bands I know who do it that ways. To me it seems like everybody wants to sound as clean and “produced” as possible today, especially when it comes to electro and synth sounds or different styles of dance and techno. I also remember a time when that whole LO-FI thing was kinda big here. But I’m pretty sure that this attitude is coming back again sooner or later.
Did you find the song writing process easy?
Yeah, we constantly write songs and lyrics or just collect riffs and melodies. The most difficult way is to find out in which direction you want your ideas to grow. But if you got a good song with a strong idea you can perform it in so many different ways. If the idea behind the song is strong enough it´s nearly impossible to destroy it. but really bad song for example can only be played in one way…the crap way. It will always turn out to be just a silly combination of riffs or so.
What’s up with your fascination with this particular set of sounds? How did you go about developing your sound?
We were born in the 80ies, man! Does that answer your question?
Haha, sure! :) Why did you choose to sing in English rather than German?
We grew up on all kinds of American hardcore and punk music (…too many great bands to list here!) and 80ies and 90ies metal especially from the UK and Scandinavia. German bands didn´t affect us that much back then. The first German bands I really, really was into was DACKELBLUT/ OMA HANS, but that was around the year 2000. During the mid-90ies the Burning Heart, Epitaph and Fatwreck bands played a big role in my life. So somehow it feels natural to me in a way to do the BABY LOU stuff in English. Another great side-effect of singing in English is definitely the fact that you can reach a lot more people outside of Germany than you could ever do with German lyrics.
Is 141 Records the only distributor of the outing?
No, no…nonono no! The album will be supported by a bunch of totally awesome sublabels and the even more awesome people behind them such as Mike @ Last exit Music from Saarland, Alex @ Fusa Records from Sao Paulo, Andreas @ Vetralkoerper Recordings, Kusel and Luke @ Fusa Records Europe, Prerov.
That’s what I’m talkin’ about :)
Tell me more about the package and add-ons you’ve decided to go along with the new album.
This time the new record comes along with a shitload of special features…let me see. There is the gatefold cover, an exclusive photobook (350 pics on 24 pages + LP download code), a poster A2, the BABY LOU fanzine #3, a sticker set and a zip lock bag with a heaping teaspoon of ash from the original artwork (…yes we burned the original artwork as you can see in our latest video to the song k-tower). We do all of our stuff DIY and over the years we figured out how to put out vinyl records like that without being to expensive. It´s very important for us to offer our stuff on a fair price.
You’ve been touring this year like crazy. Have there been wild nights on the road?
We had some weird (really weird) things coming our way, especially on or first England Tour this spring and in France this year. But as you might know…”what happens on the road stays on the road”.
Haha :) Let’s try a different angle then.
Did you play with any bands that you’re into? Any new exciting discoveries you’ve made?
2011 we had the chance to open up for one of my favourite bands ever, PIEBALD (it was like a dream come true). But hey, we played shows with all kinds of great bands such as NEW BRUISES from Florida or THE MANIX from Minneapolis. Another personal highlight for me was the show with LAGWAGON. man, I really touched Joey Cape himself!!! Too crazy!!! He´s a good kisser! Last Winter exactly one day before we hit the studio in Hamburg to record the new full length we opened up for TURBOSTAAT in Saarbrücken. it was one of those last minute shows but it gave a lot. It was a huge experience for us. One overnight drive later we started with the recording of “Stagediving Into Total Darkness”.
How did the crowd respond? Do you like to get off the stage and hang with the people in the crowd?
That´s a funny question cause usually we play small venues with no stage. You know? The moment I’m writing this I’m trying also to work on some lyrics for a brand new song called “Travelodge” and one line goes like this: “…you can`t beat the feeling of being so grounded, when you play eat and sleep on the floor.”
:) Have you done some shows in Poland? I couldn’t find any of our cities on the list of your past shows. How come? :)
No we never had a chance to play a show in Poland. This is definitely a huge problem, don`t you think? But it´s nothing personal though. Maybe it´s just because we havent´t met any bands from Poland yet. If you know one or two you think would fit our style …hook us up.
How on Earth did you pick up Brazil as your November tour destination? :)
To make a long story short …last year on BL(U)FF tour we played a show together with KACTTUS from Sao Paulo…we fell in love!
Looking at your touring schedule we can see that November 4th and 5th dates are marked as ‘recording’. What’s that? Isn’t the new album supposed to be out by then?
As I said we are constantly writing songs. We booked two days at hard base studio/ Sao Paulo and we´re gonna record as much new material as possible there. We wanna release a 10inch late next year.
Alright, it’s time for a couple of random questions, if you don’t mind :)
Tell me about the Hamburg music scene and other local music scenes you come from. What’s the relation between Hamburg and Saarbrücken?
We`re not part of any scene in Germany or elsewhere. So we might be the wrong band to ask that question. We even have DIY patches that say “BABY LOU – NO SCENE” haha!!!
For us everything truly works out fine without being part of a szene or “the szene”.
Back in our early days we might have thought different about that whole scene or unity thing. But, I tell you the more and more you learn about the people involved and the more you “look behind the szenes” the more you start to hate it. We enjoy playing shows with all kinds of different bands from Screamo to Hardcore, from Pop Punk to Electro or Ska or whatever. It really doesn´t matter. NO MEAT, NO GOD, NO SCENE.
Fair enough! :)
What other bands have you been in? Do you have hardcore punk roots?
We played in different very, very unknown Punk and Melodycore bands. But also had a couple of nice electro and Indietronic projects going on between 2005-2009. I even had a cool singer songwriter duo with a friend of mine called PETELA which I really liked (…still do).
Before you guys became rock stars ;), what was the worst job you had?
Me an Florian used to work on the production line in a factory (shit job! check out the song “the smell of plastic from our album “fresh water in a dirty glass…this one is exactly about this topic). but if I compare the factory job with our jobs at the office right now I must admit that nothing has changed but the quality of the coffee.
Ok. Let’s get serious. Why did you form this band? How old were you back then and what were your goals when starting out?
We were getting kinda bored of punk and HC shows in and around our hometown Blieskastel and maybe we were kinda bored of ourselves too. But as suddenly bands like DIESEL BOY or PIEBALD hit the spot and played in our town we couldn´t believe our ears (and eyes). We were 16 or 17 back then and were totally flashed by these emotional and poppy songs those bands sang/screamed at their audience. Like every song was the last they´re ever gonna play. That was more intense and passionate than every HC or metal band I’ve seen till then. That was the time when we realised that there must be something more than just putting riff after riff. There was something in that music something very real and creative and so we started to chase this feeling of collective creativity on our own.
Why did you pick the name BABY LOU?
We were searching for a name that should sound like the opposite of SEPULTURA.
Haha :D As a band, what are you most thankful for?
We are totally grateful that we are able to do a lot of touring and that we meet a lot of great people through that. Personally I’m very very thankful for all the amazing support by all these people, labels, bands and promoters from all over the world who believe in our little band who set up DIY shows or do booking. It´s a lot more than we ever expected.
What does the future hold for BABY LOU?
We have announced a couple of shows for 2014 already and as I said before there might be a 10 inch coming up next year.
Cool :) Thank you so much! Good luck on the road guys! Keep it up!
Thank you! we got 4 hours of flight left till we reach Sao Paulo and we are traveling at a speed of 902 kmh…whew!!! As I finish this now interview we are crossing the equator. Thanks again. It was fun.
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