SOUND OF AARHUS meets co-front man Kristoffer Vilsgaard for a chat about the new song, writings, the past and the future.
Aarhus had a long shitty winter. For TOMAD however, it must have been wonderful. While we were freezing to death and trying to look cool while smoking outside shows with gloves on, the city’s favorite neo-psych sextet were finally releasing their debut LP “Hallucination of Beauty” , touring Greece, and spending the rest of their time writing and recording new tracks for us. The gates of spring have now opened: the forest smells like wild onions, the park smells like hot dogs, and the girls are taunting you out on the lawn in sun dresses while guys in boat shoes toss beer cans at each other. Enter- “In Apathy”
Feel good song of the summer to cuddle to as the sun sets, this is not. What it is though- is a swirling, riff based rabid drunk cousin of a psychedelic tune that makes you want to drink gin from a shoe and fight the next person that looks at you. Immediately upon first listen you can hear bold swathes of The Jesus and Mary Chain, “geek” era My Bloody Valentine, and of course traces of 13th floor elevators flavored classic era psychedelia. The crap speakers from my PC notebook are now begging for mercy. Just as I am able to locate a pair of ear cans, the track is done….and….fade.
Three minutes is still less than half the average gestation period for most TOMAD songs. For a genre that most bands fully believe if they play a song long enough, their carpets and drums might actually take flight, it’s an achievement. However, the strong points of this singular piece are not its length, but its power. Tales…. have finally tapped into an up-tempo riff, and are now cutting us off at the peak. As a fan and follower of their music, one might feel a bit shorted by one of their finest sonic creations being their shortest. As it is my assignment to think about such things, I wonder if the programmatic nature of the title is a statement to the work its self. Deep shit bro. I know.
Pound for pound though, you get a tantalizing preview of one of Northern Earth’s premier psych acts. For fans of Tomad, you finally have something to dance to and fuck your friend’s living room up with. If you are being dealt in to the game for the first time, it’s an excellent introduction to not only the band, but the genre and local psychedelic scene, not to mention, does not cost you one thin dime.
I sat down with Kristoffer Vilsgaard, co- front man of Tales…, in his basement apartment for a glass of Rema 1000’s finest box wine, and a couple hundred games of Mario Kart. We managed to talk about the up-coming release, the near future for their band, and other serious stuff in between shouting at each other for zapping each other off the road in Sherbet land, and Bowser’s Castle.
[chat question=”SOA: Firstly I noticed that the track is heaps shorter than any other Tales recordings, was it an intentional decision to write a shorter song initially?”]KV: It just happened, and then we decided to put it out because it was short. Maybe some radio stations would play it. It’s the first time we’ve done a short song like this, 2.40.[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA; You have two primary songwriters, yourself and Christian, and before it was much easier to tell who wrote the bulk of a piece by who was singing it, I can’t for the life of me tell who is singing here…”]KV: It’s Christian and Kathrine[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: what’s the process then behind writing a Tales piece, is it either you or Christian coming in with a complete idea, or are they found in “jams” and then completed?”]KV: It’s both. Most times me and Christian have ideas, sometimes it’s a whole song, sometimes we have some ideas and share it, the rest of the band come with their own arrangements – for example the drums- but mostly one of us has an idea, then the band can listen and fill in.[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: how would you decide which ideas, or incomplete songs to either keep, save for later, etc? are there some tunes where you feel like “YEAH!”, is it a feeling?”]KV: we have some songs we don’t play anymore, some of the ideas get lost.[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: the album took years to make, and presumably included older material, but lately your live sets have incorporated shit loads of newer songs, are you refreshed with being able to record fresh so quickly after the album came out?”]KV: the new tracks from the e.p. we’ve been playing for about a year, but we have some new tracks that are going to be on our next next record….[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: so you’re already thinking that far ahead?”]KV: that’s what we are doing now in the practice room; we have a lot of stuff that we just want to get out there this year.[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: I’ve noticed some side projects popping up, Simon has one, Christian and Zeroine, and you have Pony coke, do you feel a lot more freedom writing for a side project, like you don’t have to filter it through five other members to get it going?”]KV: I can only speak for myself, when I have a song; I want to find people to do it with. With pony coke, we are only two people, so I have the power of all the song writing, and then just a drummer. We just do our own thing and don’t have so many people to work with; it’s like “maybe that’s not so great, we should do this instead…”[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: with the freedom of the side projects though, does that make coming ‘home’ to Tales much sweeter, more fresh?”]
KV: yeah, it’s cool to have two bands. Tales is the main one though.
[chat question=”SOA: A woman on the side…”]KV: exactly.[/chat]
[chat question=”SOA: what can we expect then from the rest of the new E.p.:”]
KV: there’s more rock sound, less psychedelic, but it still sounds like tales of murder and dust. We have a long song on it, which is a slow long psychedelic one, and then a really short one, that you heard “In Apathy” I can play you the rest, I have it…
[chat question=”SOA: DO IT!!”]
And then we heard “Skeleton Flowers” in its full entirety. I don’t want to kick the Easter Bunny in the nuts and spill all his eggs before the release, but it’s a well thought out and executed move forward for Tales Of Murder and Dust. Yes there is more of a rock sound, yes there is a long song (in a major key!) and it’s going to be great. “Skeleton Flowers” will be digitally released on 6/6 on Bandcamp.com, and plans are afoot for a vinyl pressing soon after.