Cow's interview. Blog exclusive.

1) Hey, Mark and Maxine, why are you « Cow », you absolutely want to be stored after Bow Wow Wow?

We were doing a gig to promote some new songs we had written, and needed to come up with a name so it was picked at random.

2) It’s a fantastic and awesome LP, why have you waited to publish it? You’ve recorded in Blackbarn studios and Paul Plays on it, which tracks?

We have always wanted to write and record an albums worth of songs, we had done various Eps and demos in the past but when we started writing material for this lp, and creating a little interest we decided to go all the way with it and push it out as a self released collection of songs we booked in to record at Blackbarn studio in surrey, with Charles Rees engineering for us, we started the album with just acoustic guitars and vocals in mind, as it grew we started to add a few more instruments and invited some of our musicians friends to play on it, Paul heard the first batch of demos and liked it, a few weeks later he was at the studio and got involved on a few tracks, he played guitar and sang on get to love you, and put mellotron and piano on a few others

3) Listening the LP , I’ve thought to many bands but not as a faulty aspect of the record, as complete influences but who never stops your own songwriting, could you tell us a bit more about influences? Folk? Soul? How did you create the band? Have you always played together?

We are influenced by firstly SOUL music, Tamla Motown, singer songwriters who take their art seriously and have something worthwhile and valid to say, and ourselves max and mark have both been in different bands over the past years, sometimes gigging with each other, our respective bands disbanded around the same sort of time and we started working together full time, we have had various line ups and various names, basically after trying to make the band thing work we decided we were gonna go it alone just the two of us, so COW was really born out of that, 3 years or so ago when we started recording the songs we had no idea really where they were gonna go, we knew we wanted to keep them simple and organic, and basically after every playback we could hear new arrangements and ideas, so we added just enough as not to crowd what we had done and tried hard not to overplay them and lose the openness which was created, predominantly we kept the acoustic theme running through.

4) There’s an incredible work of production on this lp, many lps are body built like Mr. Muscle and when you see the band on stage, there’s … nothing. Have you tried to keep much space, silence, breathe, pauses? It’s one of the best quality of this lp, I’m very curious about it.

With the production side of things we didn’t use to many effects, and the ones we did were fairly simple and subtle as we were recording the songs, Charles joined the herd on bass guitar, and Kenny on Hammond organ and keys, who are both very experienced and exceptional players, both of which have a great understanding and feel for where the music is going when we play live we arrange the songs slightly differently to accommodate the 4 of us, which is a very healthy and creative thing to do as it opens up new possibilities each time, our musical lineup is two acoustic guitars, bass guitar, and Rhodes/Wurlitzer keys and Mellotron and 4 voices our inspiration for our lyrics is basically born out of real life experiences and observations, people watching and situations, somewhere or something that we can all relate to and have maybe been in for good or bad!

5) What vocal role models have you got Maxine? No vibrato, no yelling, your voice is very very human, many emotions can go through it. Is it just your natural way to sing? (One of the most impressive voice I’ve heard by the way.)

I don't really have role models as such for my vocals, I didn't want to sound like any1, this is my natural way to sing and the emotions I can put through my vocals are born out of knowing the song and breathing the song


N.D. said...

Nice interview... where can I find their stuff?

Cpt.Stax said...

hello N.D. album's not out yet, will be available on itunes soon. but if you listen to mod radio uk we have a couple of their tracks on rotation, including the song mentioned with weller on vocals and guitar

end of the shameless plug :o)