Interview: Glasvegas

Ich bin immer noch im Urlaub und entspanne mich bei Sonnenschein im Garten. Aber wenn ein Interview mit Paul Donoghue, seines Zeichens Bassist bei Glasvegas, bei mir reinkommt, dann muss ich mich kurz vor den Rechner setzen, denn das will ich euch natürlich nicht vorenthalten. Immerhin erscheint ihr neues, von mir mit Spannung erwartetes Album “Euphoric///Heartbreak \” kommenden Freitag. Die fehlende Übersetzung verzeiht ihr mir hoffentlich.

Can you please introduce yourself?

Hello. My name is Paul Donoghue and I play bass guitar in Glasvegas. I like dinner and drinks and a movie, and I dislike mediocrity.

At this very moment: is making music the best thing you can think of?

Yes. If I wasn’t making music I wouldn’t be the person I am. I would probably be a very bitter person complaining about why I was better than everyone else who had a record deal. I feel very priveleged to be able to do what I do. A very small percentage of bands get to do what I do and I realise how lucky I am.

Flood. That’s a big name. What was the experience like recording this album with him?

It’s only five letters, so it’s not that big a name! It was amazing. We had been big fans of his and the stars aligned so that we could work together. He asked to work with us at the exact same time we asked to work with him. The biggest thing he gave us all was a confidence that we were doing things right. When we went to work with him he injected his belief directly into our cerebellum. It wouldn’t have been the album it was without him and our guy, Kevin Burleigh, who has been involved with us since our first demos.

You produced in LA, right? James lived there for a few months, gone househunting and was on the beach and laid back. Is that something that goes together: coming from Glasgow, living / spending time in LA? Or is it something like a culture shock?

From Berlin to Bogota, there will always be a Glaswegian somewhere around.We wrote the album in Santa Monica in a beach house on the Pacific Coast Highway. James went over and looked at almost every area of L.A. but on the last day he walked past the house we would eventually end up in. It was one of those moments where everything clicks and our luck rubs off again. It wasn’t that much of a culture shock as we’d spent some time there when we were touring round the world. It still took a bit of getting used to, but it was the right place to do it, and I think that shows. People from Glasgow can fit in anywhere too, we’re very adaptable. From Berlin to Bogota, there will always be a Glaswegian somewhere around.

In an interview James compared your new album to your debut using these words: “It’s like comparing a photo of a 10-year-old and a 15-year-old. It’s gone from Disney to Levi’s. I’m totally euphoric about it.” What are some things that you really love about the new album?

I think that quote summed it up. The things I love about the new album is that we seem like adults now, we all seem to have a clear picture of what we want from our sound now, and the level of telepathy is always increasing. We seem to be able to know what the songs need a lot better than before. I also love the opening, Pain, Pain, Never Again. It sounds like a real introduction to something special.

As far as I know, there will be a story that runs through the album. Can you give us a hint?

There is no one story that runs through the album. There are a collection of stories about different parts of James’s imagination. He is one of the most empathic people I know and can spot things in people that they themselves probably don’t see. I am very proud of the way he has written this album as I know his heart and soul has been stretched to the limit on it.

You gave a first impression of your new album by giving your song “The World Is Yours” away for free. Do you think it can boost your popularity if you give away your music for free? Or has it become a must in modern music business?

I think if you give away a strong song, like we did with the world is yours, it can boost popularity. We done it mainly for all the people who have supported us and bought albums, singles, tickets and T-shirts, which is why our mailing list recieved it before anyone else. People don’t have to spend money on our band, times are tight, but when they do it is very humbling for us so we wanted to give them something in return. It is becoming a more standard practice as a way of PR but most of the free downloads are fillers from the albums they are promoting, so you are fleecing people a little bit.

As an artist, what do you think about modern music business (piracy, iTunes, Spotify, MP3s)? Is it a bless or a curse for a band like yours?

I think the music business is slowly coming to terms with the way people do stuff now. Most people will download rather than buy a physical copy now so things have to adapt to that. With the whole piracy thing, I think people do it because they like the music but I don’t think they realise that they are stopping more musicians from coming through. If record companies don’t have money they have to make cuts and lots of times that means bands get dropped and no new bands will be signed.

How did you find your new drummer Jonna Löfgren? And how did she fit in the band? And right now, she gives James Swedish-Lessons? What for?

Rab said to our management, “I want a drummer, I want a woman and I want her to be Swedish.” We all though he was a pervert but two days later Jonna turned up and we knew right away she was perfect. She has came in and took to things better than anyone could have imagined. It is a big culture shock to go from living in a town to touring the world in a band, but she is taking everything in her stride and we are very lucky to have her. The reason she is teaching James Swedish is that he wants to learn, and he is talking about living in Sweden for a little while.

What do you enjoy more: the writing and recording process or playing live?

Personally I think that playing live is better. There is something electric that happens at least once in a show. You lose yourself at one point and you are taken away somewhere where we are the only people on the planet. I wish more people could experience the feeling.

You look forward to play a few gigs in Germany. What do you expect? Is there something special about our country?

When we first played in Germany, we were totally shocked by how positive the reaction we got. We were new to everything and didn’t think people outside Britain would get the songs as James sings with such a strong accent but when we went onstage the reaction was fantastic. We always look forward to playing in Germany as a lot of the cities remind us of Glasgow too. There is a definite similarity between the people, although you Germans look much better and healthier than us Scots.

Do you prefer playing in small clubs or do you like being on a big stage at a festival?

Both have their good points, but I prefer the smaller shows. There is an electricity that you get when you can see the whites of peoples eyes that can’t be replicated when you are at a festival. And you can have more interaction with the crowd too.

Of all the things you want to do or wanted to do, is traveling something that you like?

At first I didn’t think I would enjoy travelling but the more I done it the more I loved waking up somewhere else every day. Its great looking out the window when you travel America too, seeing the midwest leading into a desert then into the city. We’re very fortunate.

Do you want to say anything else to my readers?

I hope they enjoy the album as much as we do. And if your ever at a gig, come up and say hi. Thanks for taking the time to ask us these questions too.


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  1. Na bei dem Interview braucht es keine Übersetzung.

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