Amy Gwinnett talks to Norwegian pop-punkers Sløtface about tours, records and their new album.
So you’re playing in Islington tonight, how do you feel?
Haley (vocals): We’re looking forward to it! Especially seeing the other bands, we haven’t heard of them before but we always like checking out new music.
Do you enjoy touring?
Lasse (bass): We love touring! We think it’s the best thing in the whole wide world.
Tell us about the first gig you ever played.
Lasse: The first gig we ever played as a band was actually at a school prom, but our drummer Halvard had broken his arm so couldn’t play with us. We played another, more fun gig, two weeks later, which is our official first gig.
Who would be your dream touring partners?
Tor (guitar): I hear Greenday are heading for a European tour, so that would be pretty good! Dookie is a big reference for the band. We grew up with American Idiot.
Your new song is called Empire Records. Do you have a favourite record store?
Tor: We have a favourite record store in our neighbourhood in Norway, but I would say… Rough Trade, London? Is that a cool thing to say?
That is a pretty cool thing to say.
Tor: That’s good. They’re a pretty cool record store.
What’s the last album you bought?
Halvard (drums): Well to be honest I don’t really buy a lot of albums, I’m a streamer. I’m a hypocrite! I buy stuff when it has a cool cover, so it looks good in my room. The last album I listened to was Blue by Joni Mitchell… I should have that on vinyl!
What’s the music scene like in Norway?
Lasse: Well, in Norway the music scene is really really electronic, especially the stuff that goes international. You know, the stuff that’s cold, Scandinavian soundscapes. And we think that we do the opposite, by playing great rock, with drums, bass, guitar and vocals, which isn’t what you find in Norway so much at the moment. But everyone in the music scene in Norway is very nice! The hip-hoppers, the electronics, can all hang with the rockers.
Were you deliberately trying to have a different sound?
Lasse: I think we just want to do our own thing. We don’t try to stand out, we just want to do our own thing.
Tell us about your upcoming album.
Haley: We finished recording this summer and it’s almost done being mixed, it’s being produced and mixed by a guy called Dan Austin (Pixies, Maximo Park, Doves) and is coming out next year. We’re really excited, really pleased with what we’ve done. When you’re a musician it always feels like it takes so long, and you’re so ready to show everyone but then you have to wait a few months. It’s a little bit frustrating but we think it’s worth it in the long run to make sure we have everything sounding and looking exactly the way we want it to.
You’re self-described feminists, do you ever feel pressure for everything you do to be on message?
Haley: Not really, feminism to us is something everyone should define for themselves, as long as you believe, at the bottom of everything, every gender deserves equal rights and to have the same opportunities. So we don’t really believe in that strict rule of ‘these things are feminist, these things are not’, because it can put a lot of pressure on you, I think. It’s okay to make mistakes. We don’t like the idea that feminism is this one thing, because feminism is lots of different things.
Why should people listen to Sløtface?
Tor: Because we’re nice people and we like to play music and we have guitars and drums, not electronic stuff. And we have a cool band name!
Featured Image: William Glandberger