We did a lockdown interview with Marina is Red Zine issue 2 at the start of May which we recommend you buy here for £1.75:
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1. Isolation Days has been released during lockdown. Why was it important to you to put the message out there? and how did you go about recording and writing it?
It wasn't a planned single release at all and just something that happened really quickly. It came from the feeling of unreality that I was experiencing in the first days of the lockdown. I just picked up the acoustic and sang the opening words describing what I was doing and thinking. I liked the chords which sound unsettling against the words.
Later I made a demo by recording acoustic guitar and vocals onto the Bandlab app on my phone using the internal mic, sent Vas the drummer the link and she said just put it out like that. It was to document, to articulate what it felt like right then and to communicate with our fans and anyone else who was interested. We liked that the track was raw and unmediated by the normal process of studio recording and release.
2. All the proceeds are going to the NHS. What do you have to say to our key workers at this time?
I would say thank you and sorry. Our society is indebted to you and our Government has let you down. The people we seem to value most in society - our celebrities and stars - have offered us the least while the people we valued least - the care home workers and delivery drivers are saying goodbye to our relatives for us and bringing us food. Key workers don't want to be dead heroes.
3. The title song from your album 'My War is Your War' also feels relevant at the moment as we're all fighting this war against an invisible enemy. Could you have ever imagined where the world would be when you wrote this song and how are you coping with the whole situation?
We never imagined we could lose so many people and freedoms so quickly. We did have a strong sense of warnings being missed, priorities being wrong and society being deeply unequal. The red flags were a warning that we were in danger. 'My War is Your War' is a song about being no longer immune to events on the other side of the world and collective interdependence. We unfortunately elected a political party whose arrogance, ignorance and populism have blindsided them. They did not stockpile correctly for an epidemic then wasted crucial time when they were warned. The resulting UK death toll is unforgivable.
We are both quite introverted and relate to the world through our music and shows. We are trying to be creative and use the enforced break to write our next album. We do find it frustrating to be stopped in our tracks after releasing our second album last October. We had a list of shows yet to be announced including festivals and gigs in Germany, Belgium and the UK. Playing and making music together is our raison d'etre. There is a lot of clamour and din on social networks which makes me feel ill. Sunshine, dystopian pandemic outbreak movies, books about travel, wine and my guitar are all helping.
4. Bandcamp have been doing commission-free days to help artists like yourselves, what do you think of these kinds of initiatives?
Yeah it's good and it helps a bit, shows they value the creators on their site. Bandcamp is great for DIY releases.
5. Do you have hope for the future of the music scene? Do you think that this will be a creative time after which we'll get loads of new music being released?
Live music was keeping the music industry going so it could be decimated by this. We are full time musicians and not supporting our band through other jobs. One of our main goals this year was to get taken on by a live booking agent. We need to sell our latest album at live shows. Will there still be venues for us to play in? How will all this new music get recorded for release? We need to get back into rehearsal and recording studios.. all this is on hold and people expect to listen to it for free. I know we will fight hard to make new music.
6. What are you most looking forward to once lockdown is over? and what have you missed the most?
Living in a flat right now with a neighbour who doesn't like any sound, musicians or music it seems, so looking forward to making some noise! Playing loud music together through a PA and gigs with people dancing the night away. The freedom to be yourself. Seeing family in Scotland. Walks without worrying where other people are. An end to the grim nightly death toll statistics.
7. Is there anything else you'd like to tell Marina is Red readers about? (i.e planned concerts/ other releases / or just some general thoughts)
We hope to be supporting Greek band Villagers of Ioannina City on 1st November at The Dome, London and that our festivals get rescheduled. We wish everyone well and stay safe. We will see you on the other side!