Formed in Vienna, Austria in 2011, post punk act LORRAINE has been slowly weeding out of their classic punk / new wave influence and finding its own character for some time now. They have released 2 EPs and one split with DUCT HEARTS, THE DAYDREAM FIT and DOTLIGHTS and have just wrapped up their mini tour with Scottish emotive post hardcore band CAVALCADES, who are still on the road in Europe as we speak. I caught up with LORRAINE to serve them a proper introduction in the pages of IDIOTEQ and let you know about one of the most natural punk rock bands in Europe. Scroll down to read the full interview.
Hey guys! Thanks for taking some time with IDIOTEQ webzine. How are you, what’s up?
Daniel: We’re very happy to do this interview, thank you for asking. A lot of things are happening right now, we just got back form a live video shoot, which was awesome, and we’re trying to play more shows and write new songs, as always.
Martin: We’ve got more material lying around than ever before and we’re dying to do something with it. That video session we did was really exciting, we spent two days in Schwechat just outside of Vienna. It’s a haunting place, industrial ruins everywhere and the place we recorded in is really special. It looks like a set from an old horror movie.
Andreas: Well, RIGHT now we’re just trying to survive the freaky heat wave that is making our lives miserable.
Let’s serve a proper introduction for our reader, shall we? Please introduce the band and tell us the story of its inception.
A:Hi, I’m Andi and I play the drums.
M:I’m Martin and I play the guitar. Hi.
P: I am Paulo, and I sing.
D: My Name is Daniel and I play the bass. Together we are LORRAINE, from Vienna. We started writing songs in April 2011 with our old drummer Willem, who played drums on our first two releases (Lima EP, Kids+Crimes 7“). Andreas joined 2 years ago and we’ve changed quite a bit since then.
M: When Willem left so did most of our Post-Hardcore influence. Andreas really freed us up to do whatever the fuck we want, musically. Lorraine has gotten a lot noisier and more abstract since then.
P: LORRAINE started in 2011. Since then we’ve been writing, talking about and, most importantly, listening to music together. The constant strive to get better at those things is why we are still a band.
Are there more side-projects and other bands featuring members of LORRAINE?
D: Yeah, Paulo plays guitar in PUBLIC DOMAIN, which is all about skateboarding. Martin plays the guitar in SWAN FANGS (indie/post-punk) and Andreas and him just started a new band together. My side-project is my distro, PYLON NETWORK, and every once in a while I release mixtapes under that name; besides that I’m putting up DIY-shows in Vienna.
What records have you released so far and what are your future recording plans?
P: We recorded our first EP entitled „Lima” before we played our first show. A 7inch (KIDS+CRIMES) and a 4way split followed. At the moment we just try to write new songs that will eventually form into a full length next year.
A: Actually, we’re well on our way to making a proper album. We’ve started to change our sound quite radically as soon as I joined, resulting in the two songs we released online last year, plus ‘Frequency Hopping’, which made it onto said 4way split. This year we’ve been coming up with a whole new set of songs – most of them are even more influenced by Krautrock and the experimental side of post-punk. I guess we just can’t help it – we have to change things around just when we’ve started to feel at ease in a certain style. Which makes assembling an album quite a slow process, but we’re getting there.
Who is behind Last.Note.Records and what other labels have you been working with?
D: Our friend Arthur started Last.Note.Records. He put out our first two releases and some other band’s records and decided to quit the label again. Since then I started to distribute our releases and some self-released records from friends, trading them with other labels/mailorders and or send them to some record stores…
Besides that I worked with Daniel from TIME AS A COLOR (and DUCT HEARTS) for our newest 4-way-split-7“.
We managed to get THE DAYDREAM FIT and DOTLIGHTS and the other three labels for the split and did the artwork together. We were looking for a cheap way to make every copy beautiful and unique, so we used single pages with illustrations of old zoological and botanic books for the packaging. It was a lot of work but I’m more than happy with the result and the whole working process with Daniel felt very straightforward.
Another big support and great friend is Jonas from MY NAME IS JONAS, who helped us booking shows and with all the organization for our video session. Last year he started his record label and doing DIY-shows. Soon after that we got to know each other and now the both of us are making shows together since February. I guess it was obvious that we wanted to work with him as a band since he is a huge LORRAINE fan, haha..
What are your views on the current state of alternative and underground music? How does the whole digital era help? Do you believe the industry realises it simply has to change to survive and we’re witnessing a lot of symptoms of that process? Or quite the opposite?
P: There’s definitely a lot going on in the independent music scene. Looking at it from a DIY perspective it’s evident that it got easier to reach people with what you, as an artist/promoter/booker are doing. But the downside is that people find themselves in a data overflow that makes art as a product somehow less worthwhile. But as you said in the question, the key usually is to change and adapt to new ways of consuming and producing.
How have your local music scenes changed over the years?
A: That’s a really difficult question – we’ve all only been living in Vienna for roughly five years now, and during that time we’ve just slowly managed to get a basic understanding of the local scene(s). The punk/hardcore scene – in which all of us started out – is mostly doing its thing and not changing too radically, but there are always bands that either surf on the trend wave of the month or do something quite special. Basically the whole concept of an underground scene is a vital component that aspiring artists really need to get going, so I’m glad such a thing exists here – but what I really find impressive is when bands manage to transcend the boundaries of their scene.
Are there a lot of local punk rock shows in Vienna? Tell me more about the vitality of your local music scene.
D: For the last one or two years we’ve had many motivated DIY-bookers and there is a show somewhere almost every night, now. When we started to play shows it was mostly Hardcore-shows (except bigger ones in subsidized venues), and I’m happy to see more variety today. There are way more Indie, Noise-rock, Punk, Emo, Screamo, etc. shows than a couple of years ago.
There are many bands in Vienna who are part of different „scenes“ around labels like Fettkakao, Totally Wired, or Siluh records, but I miss a bigger network or sometimes even the most basic communication between these parties and in the whole Viennese DIY scene.
M: And that’s not always conducive to a collaborative environment. We’re kind of in the middle between the indie crowd and the punk/DIY people and most of the times it’s either to one or the other. I think people should talk more, but that’s a general rule, I guess.
Speaking of playing shows, you’ve just announced a couple of summer gigs with CAVALCADES! Are you excited?
D: Oh yes, I’m very excited! Their new LP „Lights begin to dance” is already one of my favourite records of the year and I’m happy to see them again.
A: We already played one show with CAVALCADES a few months ago. I couldn’t help myself but quiz them about Scottish movies as they are from Aberdeen – I’ve got quite a romantic thing for everything involving Scotland…
M: …and Scottish bands. We listen to a lot of Scottish pop.
What other shows and tours can we expect later this year?
D: We want to play a small tour in October or November. We never had the time or luck to get more than 3 shows in a row, so we really want to make it work this time!
Ok buddies, what other plans do you want to share with our readers?
A: As we’ve already mentioned, we recently filmed and recorded a short live session in an old factory hall just outside of Vienna, which we’re hoping to share with everyone as soon as possible. It’s going to feature a ton of creepy stuff like skulls, plastic lions and clogged air vents…
(RIP baby kitten that was found dead on our second day there *starts weeping*)
M: We’re hoping to put the album together until the end of the year, but that’s more of a “wait and see” situation.
Thanks for the introduction and till the next time!
M: Thank you.