Ahead of the release of their debut EP Feathers I caught up with Symphonic Pictures’ founding member and guitarist Johnny Bond to see what 2013 has in store for the band.
AMBY: So who are Symphonic Pictures?
JB: Symphonic Pictures is myself Johnny Bond singing and playing the guitar, it’s Dale Knight singing and playing keyboards/synth. It is also Ms Nahema Adele on Saxophone and Ed Smith on drums.
AMBY: For anyone not yet familiar with Symphonic Pictures how would you describe your music?
JB: In a nutshell.. Melodic psychedelic pop.
AMBY: Where does the name Symphonic Pictures come from?
JB: It comes from a song title on an album called ‘Rainbow’ released by Bobby Callender in 1968. He was a very mysterious chap and it’s an interesting LP.
AMBY: Feathers is a fantastic track, you’re about to release it as an EP tell us a bit more about this?
JB: It’s a four track EP; it will be released on 12″ vinyl although I think as it stands at the moment the download will be available prior to that. Two of the four tracks can be heard online over at our Soundcloud page. We’re all just really looking forward to getting the record out as it feels like we’ve not really landed yet despite having done a considerable amount of gigging and touring.
AMBY: Where can we catch you live this year?
JB: Our next show will be at the Great Escape festival Brighton on the 18th May, you can catch us at The Haunt and I believe our stage time is 12.30pm so bring a packed lunch.
AMBY: You’ve been working with Matt from Little Comets, he tells me you have a great new track lined up what else is in store for Symphonic Pictures?
JB: Yeah Matt took the separates for a new track of ours and fiddled about with the drums and did a mix of his own which came back sounding fantastic. We want to follow up the debut EP with another as swift as possible as all the songs are there, so we’d love to get Matt involved more.
AMBY: You’re such a creative band visually as well as musically what’s the inspiration behind this?
JB: When we first begun we were intent on a Symphonic Pictures show being an all round spectacle, I think it was only about our third gig and we did it with a full size video wall and showed short films we’d made for each track. However, it then became apparent we couldn’t continue to do that for every show just yet!
I think it’s been inspired through both a love of cinema and bands that can effortlessly infuse theatre into their music.. It’s hard to watch something like Talking Heads ‘Stop making sense’ and then if you still feel it’s worth being in a band, not wanting to have a go at it. I’m saying this there’s probably a couple of people who’ll read this who’ve actually seen us play and they’re thinking “Eh? They just stand there” well all the theatrics are in our heads.
AMBY: What is the funniest thing to happen at a gig you’ve played?
JB: We once overheard a joke. In all honesty I remember so so little about anything.
AMBY: Who are you listening to at the moment?
JB: Ah! There’s so much great music around at the moment, right at this moment I’m listening to a guy called Klaus Johann Grobe you can grab his EP for free at his site I think or get it on 10″ but it’s basically lovely driving krautrock style beats and vocals with some lovely Moog and organ sounds quite reminiscent of Stereolab. Since I have a bad head this morning I may put on some tracks by The Van Pelt but other than that just the usual balance of out and out 70s/80s pop and all things fuzzy/psychy. We’re all really looking forward to playing the Great Escape festival this year as we’ll be able to catch the Allah-las, Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Mac Demarco all of which we’ve been enjoying listening to.
AMBY: Last, but never least tell us something about Symphonic Pictures that nobody knows?
JB: None of our equipment other than Dale’s teeth is insured.
Symphonic Pictures debut EP Feathers is due for release on June 10th you can find full details of how to pre order a copy over at http://cottageindustries.bandcamp.com/album/symphonic-pictures
In the meantime you can check out lead track Feathers right here:
Fi Carroll @Dirtyroknroller