The last year’s stunning release from Portland’s SOFT KILL had made me much more open to the atmospheric sounds of the genre, which is an interesting example of how simple arrangements can erect epic sonic cathedral around your ears. Executed so confidently on a debut record, a lot of moments on the “Tomorrow” EP from Hamburg based SEE MORE GLASS prove this ability and shows that there should be even more exciting stuff coming up from these guys in the coming months and we’re only just beginning to see the results of their work. We have teamed up with the band’s guitarist Karol and vocalist/synth operator Erik to discuss this undeniably hooky record and serve them a proper introduction for all of you who have not come across their work.
Catch the band live in hamburg and Leipzig later this month:
26.05 with VILLAGES / Rote Flora – Hamburg
27.05 with Krank I Recover Postford / Atari – Leipzig
Answers by SEE MORE GLASS guitarist Karol and Erik (vocals/synth).
Hi guys! Thanks for sharing some time with IDIOTEQ! How are you? Please drop us a couple of lines about the band, its members, your background and the main idea behind SEE MORE GLASS.
Karol: The main idea about “see more glass” is simple: want to play music. I think that all of us four have different motivations. For me its about playing music i like and would like to hear.
We alsolike the process of writing and debate about song-ideas and try new things. We also love to play live.
What led you to focus on this particular style of punk rock music? What is it about this almost ambient type of post punk in particular that is so impactful to you? Tell us about your sonic inspirations.
Karol: I liked “postpunk” for a long time but a few years ago there were none or not many “diy” postpunk bands around so i decided to start one! Before that i played and still play in punk/hardcore bands (i found myslef in austin, texas and ashtray monument) which is a lot of fun. See more glass is, at least for me, a try to do someother stuff und try new things. I like “the cure” early “r.e.m” “motorama” and stuff like ” wire “, “jesus and the marychain” “echo and the bunnymen” “interpol” and so on.
Erik: Post-punk music have a mysterious and nostalgic impact on me. A good example for this is future islands’ seasons and the cures boys don’t cry.
Have you disliked specific moods or specifics of heavier genres? What’s are some of the most “outside SEE MORE GLASS” records on your players?
Karol: No dislike (maybe schlager) here. Most outside “SMG” records. “SUNWORSHIP” “ULVER””BLACK SABBATH” and “LOMA PRIETA” but somehow even these records influence “SEE MORE GLASS”…
Erik: In my opinion every piece of music have something “attractive” – more or less. So I can’t say that I dislike a specific genre.
I really love the sound, the feeling and the live nature of your recording. Will your next record will be tracked with the same attention to performing live?
Karol: We are (mostly) no good musicians, if we play rough live, we like our record to sound like that as well but we dont really know how the next record will sound. I guess it depends on the songs we will write. i dont like bands that sound the same on every record so maybe we gonne try something new. I am pretty sure we are gonne try something new.
By the way, was it a struggle to record it that way? How long did it take you to track it?
Erik: For me it was surprisingly uncomplicated. Besides the fact that I forget a blanket. So the coldness was omnipresent. I only took 1,5 days.
Recording-wise, what’s your next objective?
Karol: Maybe a 12″ someday, we want to keep the basic Sound,but try something new as well like some slow Songs!
Which key pieces characteristic for “Tomorrow” will be on display on your next recordings, and what new elements are you willing to add next time?
Karol: Its hard to say. We wrote a few new songs since “tomorrow”. I guess the simple structure, as well as the dynamics are still there but the new songs are mostly a bit darker and slower and eriks vocals changed a lot. We also trying to add synths to our music.
Erik: I think that we are going to develop the idea/mood of “tomorrow” futher. Maybe more mysteriuos and/or somehow ‘more humble’.
But we dont have a specific plan – only ideas.
What are some of the topics covered in your tracks? Is there anything specific that you’re hoping your listeners gets out of your efforts?
Erik: Every Song have a specific ‘topic’: From madness to seperation and somehow questions of meaning in general. Besides that you find literature-hints in some lyrics: E.T.A. Hofmanns Der Sandmann (lights), Franz Kafkas Die Verwandlung (samsa) etc.
Interesting is the second verse of the song sue in which we described the feeling of a schizophrenic. The artist Josef Forster who was a schizophrenic-painter, painted a picture in which he described his disease – we put that in words.
Photo by Nadine Laage
How would you comment on your local punk rock and hardcore scene in Hamburg? Are you a heavy attendee of such shows?
Karol: A few years ago i was involved in setting up shows! Now i only visit them. Still, the most shows i am at are diy shows. The local scene is pretty dominated by hardcore and screamo, there are a lot of cool bands, and a lot of new bands! i like “fun total” a lot. its a postpunk/noise band. There are also a lot of cool leftwing diy venues Hamburg, there are basement shows in the “fährstraße 105 and 115”. Its basicly a leftwing housing project. One of the most importan venues is the “rote flora”. A squad from the 1980ies and a place for leftwing politics, diy shwos and a lot of other cool. You should check it out!
Lastly, how does running a band in DIY fashion influence you as a musician, and what does it mean to you in general?
Karol: I like the diy idea: start you own band, create your own art. Dont wait, you dont have to play your instrument good, everyone can start a band. These ideas are still there and there a still strong. Even if this is oversimplified but diy allows you to participate or even to create you own cultural or countercultural impact. Thats also the reason why i wouldnt call myself a musican. DIY is the perfect tool to create art and at least try to do something different without getting involved into stuff like “music industry” “bandcontests” and other terrible stuff. Diy and punk in general also got me interested in politics, it got me into reflecting my behavoiur and questioning a lot of things.
Thanks so much guys! The last words belong to you. Feel free to add anything you feel is left unsaid. Cheers from Warsaw and, once again, congratulations on the amazing EP. It’s on constant replay for me lately. Best!
Karol: That is so great to hear and your kind words are much appreciated!