I recently emailed John from L.A. noise rockers HEALTH and he
talked about their forthcoming Australian tour, new album Get
Color and other projects the band have on the go.
HCD: Have you finished training for your Australian tour yet?
Or do more fish and bananas need to be mercilessly slain?
JOHN: The training never stops, it makes us even more undefeated.
HEALTH prepare for battle
HCD: HEALTH to me are one of the most interesting and
original bands around at the moment. How did you guys meet
and where do you draw inspiration from?
JOHN: Not terribly interesting. Jake and Jupiter met in College.
I met Jake working at Guitar Center. BJ came from craigslist.
When it comes to our music we are inspired by music exclusively.
HCD: You released your second album, Get Color last year.
What's the response been like? What have you been doing between
then and now?
JOHN: The live response has been amazing. I felt the Get Color
tours were our best by far. Since those tours have ended we have
been laying low in LA and working on DISCO2 the next remix album.
HCD: Get Color has lots of dirty electronic sounds. What do you
use to get those sounds? Is it something that posed a challenge to
JOHN: Everything on the album is more or less created live.
It's all our equipment. No samples.
HCD: You recorded the first album in an LA venue called The Smell.
How did you record Get Color and what were the differences in the
recording process of the two albums?
JOHN: Get Color was recorded in a very modest studio in Lincoln
Heights on analogue tape. The first album was self recorded and
fraught with technical nightmares, the new album was easier but
featured way less in studio experimentation...We'd like to balance
the two for the next one.
The scintillating "Die Slow" from Get Color
HCD: What do you think of being generally classified as a “noise rock”
JOHN: I like that label. To me Noise Rock is as much My Bloody
Valentine as it is Arab On Radar.
HCD: 66 sweepstakes tickets were hidden in copies of Get Color,
fetching bizarre and creative prizes. Did any interesting stories come
from this? I’m thinking things like:
INTOXICATED VIDEO CHAT + ARTS AND CRAFTS TIME
JOHN: No one has reported winning this ticket!!
SINGING AN LP IN BLOOD
JOHN: This one too! So we're just going to sign the poster winners
in blood to make up for it.
A RECORDING OF BJ COVERING A 90'S SONG OF YOUR CHOOSING
JOHN: This is one is going down. The guy hasn't chosen a song yet.
WE CONFERENCE CRANK CALL A PROMINENT INDIE MUSICIAN TOGETHER
JOHN: This one is also going down soon. We wanted to videotape
it or something for youtube. Sorry not a lot of stories yet. Most of the
tickets are just being filled now. We should have entertaining ones up
soon on our youtube channel.
HCD: A lot of bands seem to be struggling at the moment because
the audience can download everything for free. Are album sales
enough to sustain HEALTH?
JOHN: Absolutely not. Live shows and merchandise put food on the table...
HCD: You're planning a HEALTH clothing line with one of a kind pieces.
Can you tell us more about this?
JOHN: Trying to figure out feasibility and cost issues right now.
What the designers need, trying to have the clothes not be too expensive.
We'd like them to be reasonably priced.
HCD: You're also planning a TV show called HEALTHvision. Is the hilarious
Australian tour promo a taste of things to come?
JOHN: The Aussie video was super low budget etc. The TV show is
definitely going to be shot on a HD format of some kind, with lights, etc.
Production value. We want it to be a high level of quality.
HCD: What can Australian Audiences expect from HEALTH?
JOHN: Volume. Come to the show.
HCD: Is there anything you guys are looking forward to doing here
besides playing shows?
JOHN: Yes. We've always wanted to go for a very long time. The beach
is our first priority. I wanna swim with dolphins and in those rock swimming
pools you got... Also we've been hearing Melbourne is a super awesome city.
HEALTH AUSTRALIAN TOUR 2010
(Courtesy of Pop Frenzy)
Wednesday February 24 MELBOURNE – Corner Hotel | Tickets available from www.cornerhotel.com
Thursday February 25 BRISBANE – The Step Inn | Tickets available from www.oztix.com.au
Friday February 26 SYDNEY – Oxford Art Factory | Tickets available from www.moshtix.com.au
Saturday February 27 PERTH – Perth Festival | Tickets on sale from www.perthfestival.com
Note: This is the unedited version of the interview originally done for Spook Magazine. You can read the abridged version on their website here. Image stolen from Pitchfork.