Give us some new gods cause our ones broke.
Busking in Paris, The Fun Lovin’ Criminals, Shakira and Hippy Crap; meet The Lovegods
The first time I get a proper opportunity to talk to Deah, the exhilarating lead vocalist of theBrighton based rock quartet “The Lovegods”, she sits upstairs alone in the corner of a club listening to the band performing on the stage below.
She nods, signals for me to wait a moment, and then pulls out an earplug from her right ear. “They make the music sound better, when you’re listening to music all day long these help.” And then from the corner of her eye she notices a moving figure, “oh sorry can you wait here a moment, that guys wearing our t-shirt, I have to go say hello.”
Later on, guitarist Art comes out of another café unimpressed, “not this one, we’ll find a better one further down”. We’ve been wondering along theLondonstreets for half an hour now.
Finally in the café Art decides is appropriate, he laughs out loudly, “Me a perfectionist? Oh fuck yeah. I’m working on it though.”
Already being hailed as the"seamless masters of style weaving” on the UK, New York and Paris underground scenes, it is easy to say that The Lovegods are clearly destined for great things.
“Let’s make a movie!” suggest Art when asked about the way the two first met. “It was chance really, it was fate.”
Deah tells her side of the story, “I was playing inParisbecause I was very young and crazy and I lost my passport and my tickets and everything on the Eurostar. I called them up and said ‘please keep them’ because they had found them, but then when I went back to get them they didn’t know what I was talking about. So I was busking to get money to get back toEnglandand I busked his cafe.”
“Yeah I was hanging out and she just arrived and took a chair from the café and started strumming her guitar busking, and I was like, wow what a voice, and so when she came to collect money…”
“My guitar playing sucked.”
“Yeah her guitar playing sucked but yeah, what a voice. So when she came to grab some money I gave her a lot of money.”
“He gave me ten francs.”
“Actually yeah that’s just a quid. Anyway I told her you know, I’m doing music too, I’ve got a little studio at home, you wanna come over and record some music and stuff, and she goes ok and we exchanged phone numbers. The funny thing that happened was the number I left on this table, I wrote it on those French table papers, red squares and white, and I wrote it there and she told me when she got back that she lost it. She didn’t call me, she lost the paper and a day later she found the paper in a street.”
“No it was like two hours later. I saw it blowing in the wind. It’s so cool; it’s so romantic it seems fake.
On arriving to theUKthe duo began performing small acoustic sets in small basements inBrighton. Soon after,drummer Rob, and bassist Tim,were bought in to complete the current line up, and The Lovegods began to perform regularly in front of their largeBrightonfollowing, consistently selling out The Komedia venue located in the heart of the city.
Art continues, “Oh yeah and we were with a major label about three years ago and it wasn’t a successful experience for us. We weren’t ready; we were very naive about the whole business. We thought ‘Oh great, they’re beautiful, they’re going to help us, they love artists.’ They do love artists, but more than that they really love money, which means the need to make money and make money quickly, and we felt very constrained in that.”
The major label which the band refuse to name “we’d rather not name a name as that could piss a few people off, but rest assured it was one of the big labels,” dropped them soon after, and the band were left to take it upon themselves to go forward with what they collectively felt as the ‘true way’; to go as independent as they possibly could.
“What we want to do now is we want to finish our album, like we’ve got one mini album that we’ve done and we want to get it in there and do our full album. Eventually we want to distribute through some sort of label, but not let them have any creative input. We don’t want any censorship from them on the music, on the art. It’s not their business,” explains Deah.
“We might need them at some stage to distribute. If you really want to expand yourself, and if more people want your music, naturally you need to go through structures which are there.”
Being totally independent leaves The Lovegods in an interesting position. They are able to produce whatever music they feel like, whilst remaining totally unafraid of any corporate entities that may wish to condition their material; quite a rarity in the music business as of late.
Art leans in a little more, “the base of it I would say is rock. We make rock. So many bands you will go and see are rock bands and you go and see just rock, rock, rock. We’re very eclectic and schizophrenic, so the music we make you can’t box it. It’s very much the experience of live. It’s very much about playing live. When we arrived in this country and went to see bands it seemed like you’re watching television, and it’s great. There’s a big screen, and a bands doing their thing, but we love to be with the audience and interact and play with them.”
“And we like the changes. Very often we’ll end our set with this really soft children’s song called ‘Magic faery butterfly’, and it’s just amazing to see people who will be screaming to one song and then they’re completely silent with the next. And you’ll see these big butch guys that are virtually in tears at this song, and its amazing making that connection with the audience. You get to take them on a journey to all these different places.”
In 2003 The Lovegods impressively supported the Fun Lovin Criminals inBasingstoke, and were then personally requested for by band members to support theUSstars on theUKleg of their tour. How did this originally come about?
“Our agent slept with all the criminals,” laughs Deah.
“Well they needed a support act and we played of all places,Basingstoke, and they really loved what we do. They were like ‘oh wow man, this band is great’ and when the tour came up they were just like ‘oh can we have them to support us’.”
“They were amazing, so supporting. They taught us how we wanna be when we’re in a position to be able to help aspiring bands.”
And when asked about any interesting tour stories, Deah laughs slyly and says, “That’s not fair, they’ll never take us on another tour again.”
The Fun Lovin Criminals aren’t the only star that has had an impact on The Lovegods lives. Deah sits there remembering that incident with Shakira, “Oh yeah, she got in the way, she booked out the entire studio. Because we’re doing it on the sly because we don’t have a record company and we’re not paying like a grand a day to get these places, so it’s whenever they’re not booked. She booked flat out the entire place, and she tired out our engineer and it was just messed up. She really should have thought of us.”
Highly amused, Art adds, “It’s all about the love gods, that’s it, and so she should know.”
“But I’m sure she’s a really nice person”.
The bands latest offering is a soon to be self released mini album titled “Between Dogs and Wolves”. Measuring in at a massive fifty plus minutes, the album includes five new tracks recorded in London’s Metropolis studios with newly mixed versions of old crowd favourites taken from their first EP“Give me a new God cos this one is Broken”. The new mini album will see the inclusionof sure to befuture hit “Sadie Mercedes” as well as a new version of their beautiful ‘Magic Faery Butterfly”.
“What can you expect from it? GREATNESS!!!!” announces Art.
Time begins to run out. So finally after easing their way, reluctantly at first, into a conversation about their views on god, “What do we think about god? Well how long you got?” Art looks at me for the final time before the tape is turned off, “God I hate talking about it because it sounds like such hippy crap, but the thing is, it happens. We do it for the hippy crap.”
Published by Raj on Tuesday, February 10, 3:45 PM