Of tokyo karnivool

Keywords: of tokyo karnivool
Description: Frontman on tenth anniversary tour of Karnivool's debut album Themata.

Karnivool are celebrating the tenth anniversary of their debut album Themata with a vinyl reissue of the album, and a national tour where they will perform the entire thing from front-to-back. Fittingly for a conversation that dealt with the difficulties of juggling two successful acts, Ian Kenny's other band Birds Of Tokyo announced a new EP just days after this chat, which is out now.

I guess Themata is the record that started everything for Karnivool, so the fact we've come to the year 2015 and it's  the 10-year anniversary, it's something we thought was worth doing, and something we'd like to present to our  fans. We are very well aware that Themata   is one of the most important records for fans of the band - it's kinda for  them.

We start production rehearsals next week, and we're walking into this with open arms. As a band we adore the record; i t still stands up as a record, it still sounds good 10 years on, and it's such an important record in the history  of Karnivool. We still play a handful of the songs live, so to do the whole thing - which is something we've never  done before - we're very much looking forward to it. That's what's going to be different: bringing the actual songs,  and what it takes to make that work on the stage, bringing the whole record into the 2015 version of Karnivool .  We understand ourselves as players more than we did back then. It will be a good result.

It's pretty interesting, we've still got a lot of the gear we used to make the sounds on that record, so it'll be a lot of  the same gear coming out. We've got an SPD sampler, all these trigger pads, which is how we do a lot of ' Synops' ,  which is a piece off that album. It's going to be a massive, massive trip down memory land, and such a  psychological. we're going to live it again, but with fans of the band who hold that r ecord to be really important, and dear to them. That's something pretty special.

We were aware it was our debut record and we wanted to make it as great as it could be. It was a hard record to make,  it took three years to get it to where it needed to be. At the time we didn't always know what we were doing; we were j ust sorta following the idea of what Karnivool was and following our gut a lot of the time. It's the first record  we'd ever made, and we were very green. We were a lot younger band back then. We were enjoying it and having fun with  it, while being aware it was our first record and we needed to get it right.

As for influences, f**k: everything from  grunge rock, to late ' 90s metal, to hip-hop, to Sugar. Tool - all sorts of stuff.

Nah, I wouldn't change the record at all, because it captures what we were as a band, and who we were as people. I listen  to it now and I hear a younger Karnivool trying to work it out. But at the same time we discovered some f**king  amazing things on that record because we didn't always know what we were doing, and followed what we thought was right.  I enjoy listening to it.

Well, we put the record out in 2005, and shortly after that we did a national tour with Cog, and the record was out,  and that was the first time we experienced the rest of the country en masse, really decent, big shows and lots of them -  it was a massive tour, and people got to hear the record on stage live, they got to hear what Karnivool was really  about. That's how we established a relationship with a lot of our fans. It kinda kicked off things for Karnivool.

Probably 'C.O.T.E'. I think it's such an expressive piece, and it has such great dynamics  throughout. It's a pleasure to listen to, and it really stands up live, and I think it was one of our first songs that  the audience really connected to.

Nah, there's not many that I wasn't enjoying. Thankfully the record, from song to song, there's  nothing too similar about any of them, so you get something out of a song each time it comes around.

There's always a bit of internal pressure to deliver what we feel is the right thing, and not to repeat the last  record, but we just to try to capture the best of the band on a record - which is what we still try to do

And leading two bands, how do you decide which material goes where? Or is it more a case of the streams never  crossing?

The creative streams are always at a healthy distance. I try to keep Karnivool's work very much in the Karnivool world, and  in the same respect with the Birds. It's usually bleedingly obvious to me which is which, thankfully.

Which song from the Karnivool catalogue would you use to introduce Birds fans to Karnivool, and vice-versa?

F**k, that's a good question man, I've never been asked that before [a period of radio silence follows].

Okay, maybe 'Shutterspeed' to introduce Birds' fans to Karnivool, and to introduce Karnivool fans to Birds, a song on our  last album called 'White Leaves'.

I mean, it is both. I try to keep as much distance between the two creatively, and also with the output of the bands, because  to me, that's what keeps it exciting. And if it ever started to get too close together, I'd try to direct it away. It's  that, but it's also the people involved, and the chemistry involved - it's f**king two different worlds, man.

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