Miike Snow @ The 9:30 Club
March 24, 2010
On a summery Spring day in Washington DC I entered the famous 9:30 Club, where I was led into a dark back room to talk to the electropop trio of Miike Snow. While lead singer, Andrew Wyatt, couldn’t be interviewed because he needed to rest his voice for the show I was able to talk to the likable and friendly remaining Swedish duo of Christian Karlsson and Pontus Winnberg about their tour, music, and the future of the band. Miike Snow’s self-titled debut album is a catchy and melodic production that sounded even better live than I could have anticipated. Their debut album came together organically and easily in the studio, and their stunning international success has surprised even the group members themselves. With their D.C . stop at the 9:30 Club coming at the beginning of their U.S. tour Miike Snow is in position to make a splash across the country as fans get to experience “the other half of the Miike Snow experience” in concert halls across the nation…and as they said, “Buy the CD, buy the ticket….and we will see you all in the back lounge.”
S: Spud Paulus, WGTB DJ
C: Christian Karlsson
P: Pontus Winnberg
S: Thanks for taking the time to interview today, so how are you guys doing?
P: Very good, very good
S: And How is the tour?
P: It is good, very good, just getting started though.
S: And what stop is DC on the tour?
P: It’s like, we started off with Southby, then Houston, Atlanta, and now here.
S: So far it has been a good response?
P: Yeah, great response, great.
S: And before this did you go on tour in the UK?
C: Yeah, we were home for a week or two.
S: Home in Stockholm?
P: Yes, and we did one show there.
S: So how has the American response been?
P: Yeah I think we have sold out more than half of the shows that we have on this tour, so it’s good.
C: Actually I think we are sold out closer to 80%.
S: So is the opening act, Delorean, from Barcelona? Is that right?
P: Actually I think they are originally from San Sebastian, closer to Basque country.
S: Oh, OK great. And have you ever played in DC before? Where did you play?
C: Yeah…I don’t know where. It was maybe a 400 venue or something.
P: Yeah something like that. It was good. I liked it.
S: And was that as Miike Snow or Bloodshy & Avant?
C: No, it was as Miike Snow
P: Yeah we did a tour in August
C: Kind of a Miike Snow with one “I”
S: And when did you guys form?
C: I think it was in 2007.
S: Great, so what was the inspiration behind the album? Anything in particular?
P: I think everything, like it is hard to pick out one source of inspiration. Everything from the people you see on the train ride to the studio to the people you talk to…everything.
S: So did all of this come easily in the studio?
C: Very, very easy. Every song is being used that we did.
P:Yeah, definitely. I was surprised going back from one day to the other to see that we did a whole song the day before because it didn’t seem like we did anything useful. Just because there was no struggle involved.
S: Did you guys have anything in the works right now or are you strictly focused on playing live?
C: We are really focusing on the live stuff right now, but we are going to start really soon with the next record. We started in our heads I guess, I have a lot of ideas, but we need to find time to go into the studio.
S: What do you enjoy more playing live or just recording?
C: I think it is a combination, you know that you are actually going to the studio and then taking it with you on tour. If you are only touring I think you would miss the studio, and the opposite you know.
S: Do you have a favorite song to play? Or a least favorite song to play?
P: I think it is different for every night.
S: Just based on the crowd or what?
P: Yeah, the crowd and us.
C: The mood you’re in you know. Sometimes the more up-tempo stuff is really fun, and other times San Soleil is the most fun song.
S: So why should people come out and see you live? What makes you great live?
P: I think it adds to everything. If you have our album you have half of Miike Snow. It is the other side of the coin. I think there are so many similarities and differences that with seeing us live you get the whole thing.
C: Yeah, live you get so much more out of the songs, we also try to make all the shows different so that it is an original show for us and for the audience, no computers or pre-recorded stuff, we always change something.
P: Either on purpose or we have to because something goes wrong.
S: What has been the hardest part about touring so far?
C: I think it is being away from stuff, either family or the studio or whatever you are away from. Of course there are so many great things with being away, but of course you have a down side of being out.
P: And that makes the down-time the worst. Like sometimes when you have a day off that is the worst…ever. We try to do stuff and see stuff, even if it is just seeing or a movie or going around the city. Just because if you are on the road for a long period of time…it can make you go crazy. You have to make use of the off time.
S: So when you were recording the album did you know it was going to be a success? Obviously you guys have been enormously successful now, but how much of that did you anticipate?
P: We didn’t do it in the sense of a purpose, not even for the purpose of releasing actually. We did it for the purpose of making it, and then whatever happened just happened. When we did it in the first place there was NO other purpose other than just recording the songs.
S: So what bands do you guys like to listen to right now?
P: I mean there are so many bands.
C: I like The XX a lot. But I mean other than that there are so many other bands we listen to.
P: Yeah I think we have a very skitzo CD collection, a little bit of everything.
S: And how do you like the remixes to your songs considering you seem to have been remixed by nearly everyone?
C: Yeah I mean it is a big thing for us. I mean we really like remixing ourselves, so it is really an honor, and I think some of them are our friends and some are people we really look up to so it is has been really great. And hopefully we will continue to have a bunch of remixes to our songs.
S: Great so is there anything else I should know, anything you want fans to know?
C: Hmm, I think that about does it…
P: Just make sure to see Miike Snow live. Buy the CD, buy the ticket, that is the message….
C: …And we will see you all in the back lounge.
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