The Lowdown: Kula Shaker Interview

The Lowdown: Kula Shaker
“Love each other and drink more tea.”

In the 90’s Britpop heyday Kula Shaker were one of the driving forces. As Britpop faded into oblivion so did Kula Shaker. So what actually happened to them? We managed to get The Lowdown with the guys about what happened for them as people and as a band between then and now.

Altsounds: Thanks for taking the time to talk to Altsounds, tell me where in the world you are when answering these questions?

Kula Shaker: I’m on an Easy Jet flight to Hamburg, it’s very very early so please excuse the following answers.

Altsounds: I never felt Kula Shaker were given the amount of continued positive press they deserved, why do you think that is?

Kula Shaker: Because we’re a bunch of c**ts! Apart from that we had a lot of success very early on in our career and in the UK once the press have built you up they like to knock you down, hey ho.

Altsounds: What is it like to have upcoming bands cite Kula Shaker as an influence towards their work?

Kula Shaker: It’s always nice to get validation from other musicians.

Altsounds: There are numerous covers of your songs all over the web, but have you ever witnessed a live Kula Shaker cover band, or indeed made a cameo appearance with them?

Kula Shaker: No, but I did enjoy three classical guitarists doing a rendition of Spawn of Satan on YouTube.

Altsounds: I understand that there was a CD released in 2006 for the New Braja Village School, but how did that come to fruition?

Kula Shaker: Crispian, Paul and myself recorded a track for this album before the band got back together. The album was put together by Crispian for an educational charity in India.

Altsounds: Other than that brief return to the industry, what have you and the band been up to in between Kula Shaker releases? Both as individuals and as a band?

Kula Shaker: I made a record and toured with Johnny Marr and Zak Starkey in The Healers. Crispian formed The Jeevas. Paul also played with other bands and we all made babies (not together I should add).

Altsounds: Whose decision was it to come back with a new album?

Kula Shaker: We stayed in contact and played together through our ‘sabbatical’. I think it was inevitable that we would make another record one day.

Altsounds: Who is the driving force behind the writing of lyrics and music?

Kula Shaker: Its all me!!

Altsounds: Do you feel you are a more open band when it comes to approaching new material and ideas?

Kula Shaker: As a band its important to keep moving forward musically. Otherwise things could get a little dull. Having said that there is an aesthetic thread that runs through the records which come from our individual playing style and teenage record collection.

Altsounds: The new presentation packs available included some awesome limited edition sets, are you big on producing collectible items for fans?

Kula Shaker: Ooh yes, we grew up on vinyl! It always gave you a sense of owning something more then just music.

Altsounds: You always used to release singles and albums in rare and interesting forms, will that still continue in the age where digital singles appear to take precedence?

Kula Shaker: With the Internet it’s a lot easier to get music out there and that’s something we’ve tried to do between albums.

Altsounds: On that note, are you keen on the way music is currently promoted and released?

Kula Shaker: The main problem with digital releases is the quality of the sound files. Its crazy that vinyl, a format that’s almost 100 years old is better quality then MP3 of even CD.

Altsounds: Do you think this reformation and return would have been as widely covered if we still had the networking of old, rather than new internet methods?

Kula Shaker: I think a multi-million pound marketing budget from a major label, like Sony would certainly mean wider coverage. This still exists but only in the world of uber pop… time to get working on those dance routines.

Altsounds: There are rumours circulating about a UK tour, is that true?

Kula Shaker: Yes hopefully we’ll tour the UK some time in early Autumn.

Altsounds: Are you looking to do low key venues, or will you be coming back with a bang, hitting the larger stages?

Kula Shaker: 40 nights at the 02 followed by an arena tour I think.

Altsounds: Do you enjoy being on the road and is it something you’re excited about?

Kula Shaker: It depends where you are! Sicily has a bit more charm then the M1.

Altsounds: What are your expectations from fan response to the album and to live shows?

Kula Shaker: I expect spontaneous, mind altering, out of body experiences for all.

Altsounds: Being well known for your cover of Deep Purple’s ‘Hush’, do you perform any other cover songs live?

Kula Shaker: We have been playing Daniel Jonston’s ‘True Love’ which is a very lovely song.

Altsounds: Are you responsible for choosing which artists support you and are they any out there who you would love to take under your wing?

Kula Shaker: We always try and make sure the support act fits in and adds something to the show. I’m living in the middle of a forest in Belgium at the moment so I don’t get to see a lot of new bands. I did see a very good accordion player the other day but I don’t know how well that would go down.

Altsounds: Should the following 12 months be a success, can the fans count on Kula Shaker to stick around for a bit longer?

Kula Shaker: We’ll keep making music, whether it’s successful or not. Unfortunately I’m no good at anything else. We’ll stick around as long as were writing songs that we think should be heard.

Altsounds: Are there any immediate plans in place for future releases / festival appearances?

Kula Shaker: We’re a bit late for the festivals this year but we should be touring in the Autumn.

Altsounds: There is only one Kula Shaker and I can honestly say, I’ve never been more pleased to read about this comeback. Are there any last words you would like to leave the Altsounds readers and fans?

Kula Shaker: Love each other and drink more tea.

Published in: on 19/06/2010 at 18:24  Leave a Comment  
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