motorama. interview #36

photo by i. kasminin
Coinciding with the release of a new song through Holiday Records (and a new video!), today we feature Motorama: a russian band that will take you to the 80's cold wave era and post-punk movement and still will manage to set your heart on fire and give electric shocks to your feet with hints of twee and dreampop.
All of their releases are available for free and in case you don't know them the best advice I can give to you is to go download their songs as soon as possible.
'Alps' is their debut album and was listed on our best of 2010. It is a gem, a hidden gem that caught the attention of the blogosphere through warm arrangements, dreamy guitar hooks, strong bass lines and a deep voice.
Let yourself get lost into their magical summery forest, always haunted by cold winds.

New single: One Moment


And here's my interview with Vlad: creative process, the album, references, influences, visual music and the internet killing the music industry are among the topics...

01. Could you tell us how it all started? How the name of the band was chosen? And where exactly are you located in Russia?

We formed a band in 2005 with my friend, he was on bass guitar. He found an old US movie called "Motorama" and gave it's name to the band. Now he is playing another music in another band, but I'm still in Motorama with new people. We are located in Rostov-on-Don, the south of Russia.

02. If your music were a planet or landscape, how do you think it would look like?
It will be big jelly balloon with river hands and eyes of grass. It will be working as an actor in mountain theatre, acting on one stage with unicorns, clouds and rainbows.

photo by p.platonov
03. The first time I heard the album I felt like I was listening to some rare, long-forgotten album from the late 70’s/early 80’s. A mixture of Joy Division, early post-punk… but there’s also an upbeat feel throughout the songs that breaks the ice of the sounds, lyrics and the deep voice. Tell us about the evolution of your sound and what are your influences…
In 2005 Motorama was influenced by Factory records musicians a lot, now we are listening balearic beats, downtempo sounds and dream-pop tunes. We are big fans of Beach House and Wild Beasts. Don't know where we'll be in our sound experiments in future, I think that new waves of expression are the most important and exciting parts of being in a band.

04.  How did ‘Alps’ was recorded? When (and why) did you decided that it was going to be given for free? What do you think about the music distribution system nowadays? Did Internet killed the music industry?
"Alps" was recorded in Max flat, together we've bought some equipment and start very simple recording processes. We are total dilettants in music engineering, but we are interested in it and we are trying to do all producing and production by ourselves. We have no good studios in our city, so this way for sure is the best for us.
About music distribution system, CD and vinyls are great merchandize the same as t-shirts and stuff, but I know nothing about selling music in internet. It's not serious to speak about it when you can get what you want in several clicks. We don't care about music industry, we will be happy to see people on our gigs with free Motorama songs in their headphones.

05. If I had to choose the strongest moment of the album, I would have to say that it’s the last 4 songs: ‘Ghost’, ‘Alps’, ‘Ship’ and ‘There’s No Hunters Here’. ‘Alps’ and ‘There’s No Hunters Here’, specially. 
I mean, ‘Alps’ is probably the warmest song of the album in terms of melody (and the video is so pretty!). And  ‘There’s No Hunters Here’ has that killer guitar riff, the lyrics, the second time of ‘And she said/And he said/There’s no hunter here!/Hunters here!’ is amazing. Impossible not to shout along and dance.
Talk about these two songs, the making, the feeling...
"Alps" song was done last and it was born fast and spontaneously. It was easy to figure out its structure and how to manage the parts that we've made. About the feeling I can say that it's the most alcohol and hallucinogenic song on the album with blurred dreamy lyrics.
‘There’s No Hunters Here’ was the oldest one from the "BEAR" EP period.  We've played it with drum machine in 2009 and it still has typical dance layers with country house atmosphere.

06. Now let’s talk visual: most of your videos are made by you. Talk about the relation between music and video and how important is that to you?
It's all about aesthetics and sound and vision marriage. And of course it's important for us, the same as it's important for every band we love. We make all our videos in DIY manner, we never spend much money for it, if we need something we ask our friends and relatives. It's so good to have warm tea in thermos that your mother made for you or ask your neighbour for a great baggy sweater for the outdoor scene.

07. The first time I heard from you was when I interviewed Palm Trees. I asked them to name a few cool bands from the Russian indie scene and one of the names they cited were yours. Now is your turn:  give us a glimpse of the independent music scene in Russia under your perspective. Any bands the world should know?
Epic band from Rostov-on-Dom - RITMIKA. You can find their debut album for free download in web. One more band - MANICURE from Moscow, they've got nice album and preparing new one.

08. Do you get to live of your music?
Completely no, if you mean money aspect.

09. Any music video (not necessarily from the band) that you think everyone should watch?
Try Destroyer's - "Kaputt" video. It's brilliant.

10. Any song(s) you’d like to cover?
"The Spirit Was Gone" by Antony & the Johnsons. It's impossible, Antony is so powerful in vocals and every cover of his song will be born dead.

11. Name the perfect place and time to hear your music.
In the evening before sleep or with the cup of tea in your hand, reading expedition novels.

12. Recommend something you've been listening lately.
Try Perfume Genius debut album, new Young Galaxy album and wait for the new Wild Beasts release.

13. Anything else you feel like saying?
Giants, cockatoos, pineapple liqueur, blue tent.


Anonymous said...

Best new band around ! The new song is even better than anything on the album !

Petar said...

thank you!