Friday, April 29, 2011


It’s Showtime:


By Stephen SPAZ Schnee

     Since the early ‘60s when The Beatles kicked open the doors, there’s been a constant flow of bands making their way from the UK, Scotland and Ireland to America. Every 10 years or so, there will be chatter and hype about a ‘new British Invasion’, but music fans are well aware that great music has been landing on these shores for decades, and there doesn’t seem to be any signs of it stopping, thank goodness.
     For every big band that scales the top of the charts or becomes press darlings (Beatles, The Clash, Depeche Mode, Blur, Oasis), there are dozens of other bands that are just as worthy of your attention and hard earned dollars. Some of the newer bands that are revving their engines and are poised to do big things in the U.S. include One Night Only, The Wombats and Ireland’s very own Two Door Cinema Club.
     When TDCC released their debut album, Tourist History, in 2010, music fans instantly fell in love with their Pop smarts and Post-Punk influences. This wasn’t a band playing jagged, angular and experimental music for a select few: TDCC play big, glorious Pop that instantly grabs the listener and takes them on a trip filled with soaring choruses, delectable guitar riffs and melodies that stick in your head and heart.
     Unlike some of their contemporaries, the band’s popularity continues to rise. Their debut album has just been released on vinyl in the U.S.; the band put in a roaring live set at Coachella in April of 2011 and is planning to make another trek across the U.S. in September.
     Stephen SPAZ Schnee managed to catch up with the band and was able to slide a few questions their way. TDCC member Alex Trimble was gracious and patient enough to spend a few moments answering them…

SPAZ: The album has been out a year and the excitement and interest in the band continues to grow. How are you feeling about things up to this point?
ALEX TRIMBLE: We feel great. It’s incredible to have so many people liking what we do.

SPAZ: Have you been surprised about the universally positive reaction to the album? Everybody I know that has heard it seems to love it, including myself…
ALEX: Yes, of course. When you set out to write some music, you never really think how people will react to it, you just do it for your own pleasure… Anybody liking it it’s a massive plus.

SPAZ: The album is a brilliant mix of Pop hooks and Post-Punk intelligence. Did you all share similar influences growing up or is the band’s unique sound just a happy accident?
ALEX: Well, we all grew up together; all our influences are shared influences. But we all are very individual, and the way we play our instruments reflects that.

SPAZ: What’s the normal songwriting process for the band?
ALEX: There isn’t one. It’s pretty random.

SPAZ: Do you feel that your surroundings in Ireland have a distinct effect on your songwriting?
ALEX: Where you grow up, your roots, will always influence what you do, whatever you do.

SPAZ: It’s always been said that you have a lifetime to write your debut album and only a matter of months to write your sophomore album. Did you have any songs from the Tourist History sessions that you are holding over for the 2nd album, or are you going to start with a clean slate?
ALEX: We have loads of songs and we write all the time. It’s not going to be a clean slate; it will be a progression… we hope.

SPAZ: Have you had any input on what singles get pulled from the album or do you leave that up to the label? There seems to be a large percentage of bands these days that let the label choose them….
ALEX: We have a close relationship with everyone around us. The choice of singles is generally dictated by what the fans want to hear on radio. We hope that, all together, we made the right choices.

SPAZ: In regards to your contemporaries in the charts, do you feel a kinship or competition with many of them?
ALEX: We feel kinship with the bands and artist we respect; massive competition with the ones we think are fucking rubbish.

SPAZ: You’ve toured in many different countries, in different sized venues, even recently playing Coachella in Southern California. Is it a bit surreal to go from playing to a few hundred people in a club, then go play a festival gig to thousands and then back to a club again?
ALEX: Well yes , but that is the beauty of it. You still have people really getting to know you, you get a buzz out of it. You get a bigger buzz when you see 20-30-40,000 that actually do know you and love what you do.

SPAZ: A year on, the vinyl edition of the album is being released in the States. Are any of the band members avid vinyl collectors?
ALEX: We all are. We love limited editions and rare stuff... We love the fact that artwork has got a bigger canvas on 12” than CD or a digital packshot. Lots of young people are getting into it and I love that.

SPAZ: Although you were playing Coachella on Record Store Day and probably couldn’t partake in this music-oriented ‘holiday’, has the record/CD shopping experience been an important one in the band members’ lives? Do you try to collect a lot of music while you are out on tour?
ALEX: Always!!! Far too much!!

SPAZ: What’s next for Two Door Cinema Club?
ALEX: Summer festivals. We are looking forward to playing Lollapalooza, a U.S. September tour, a second album, marriage , kids , death, and........

SPAZ: What do you currently have playing on your record, CD and DVD players?
ALEX: On DVD is Curb Your Enthusiasm. On CD… far too many to mention.

Thanks to Alex Trimble
Special thanks to Kevin Farrell, YiPei Chen-Josephson and Michelle Gayhart

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