Northern Transmissions had the opportunity to catch up with Rachel Kenedy from the UK band ‘Flowers’. Their Bernard Butler produced full-length LP Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do is now out on FortunaPop!/Kanine Records.
Northern Transmissions: Your forthcoming debut album Do What You Want To, It’s What You Should Do, was produced by Bernard Butler, an accomplished composer/producer. What was the experience like?
Rachel Kenedy: It was really unexpected and unforgettable! We’ve never really done anything in a studio, let alone Bernard Butler’s studio! We’re just used to recording in our bedroom at home. We were worried it’d feel really glassy and professional and we wouldn’t be able to relax, but as soon as we got there our fears were allayed. Bernard is such a good guy and put us at ease straight away, partly because he’s so nice and also because he’s such a consummate professional and knows exactly what he’s doing. His studio was lovely and small and cosy and full of musical gems, so we felt at home right away. We had a great time recording!
NT: The band came together via an ad on Craiglist?
RK: The UK equivalent, yeah! Sam put up an ad looking for a singer, apparently lots of people replied so I feel really really lucky they liked my reply! I did my audition via Skype.
NT: It sounds like you guys became fast friends. You moved in together and banged out a hundred songs pretty quickly.
RK: Yeah we all got on so well right away. We lived far away from each other when we first met, so everything got kind of condensed, including our friendship. For example, rather than meet up briefly a few times to start rehearsing as most people would, the train fares here are really expensive, so to save money the first time we met and played together we did it for a whole week. We went through a lot of beer and had a great time getting to know each other and working out all the songs we’d already written online together. We did that a few times, meet up for a week to play and have fun and drink lots of Fosters. After that we just moved right in together to save on train fare.
NT: The album deals with the joys of youth, but there are also some sad moments on it. Was it difficult opening yourselves up?
RK: Not at all. I think most people play music to express something. I’m shy in person and often find it hard to say things, but I can always express myself when I sing. So the album has lots of different emotions in it, however we felt writing the song is how it came out.
NT: Most of the songs are also quite short. Was this a goal, or did they just a flow out naturally?
RK: It comes naturally, but it’s also something we’re conscious of. We always skip the boring bits in other people’s music so we’re very keen to try and make our songs so short you don’t want to skip any of them. We want people to finish the song, think it wasn’t enough, and rewind to hear it again! That’s the dream.
NT: The band played shows with Young Marble Giants, how did it go?
RK: It was AMAZING! They’re one of our favourite bands ever, and we also get along really well with Stuart so it was a perfect night really. They sounded spellbinding as always, and our set went down well for the most part! We made 99 demo cds to sell for donations and they all went on the night, so that was good.
NT: Can we expect to see the band hitting North American shores soon?
RK: We’re coming over in October for CMJ in New York. We absolutely can’t wait! Hopefully next year we can come to the west coast too.
NT: Which five albums are still inspiring you?
RK: We love a LOT of different music, so I couldn’t pick the only five that still inspire us because there are so many more than that! So, these are the last 5 we’ve loved dancing to most lately:
Misfits – Static Age
Ramones – S/T
New Order – Power, Corruption and Lies
The Wedding Present – George Best
The Wake – Harmony