Thursday, September 3, 2009

[interview] Plants and Animals - New Album Progress Report

Interview with Plants and Animals' Matthew Woodley

I was very fortunate to have Matthew Woodley (aka Woody), drummer for Montreal's Plants and Animals, take time out of his busy schedule and answer a few questions about the band's upcoming album. Plants and Animals are in the final stages of wrapping up their follow-up to the amazing Parc Avenue. Once the album is released in the coming months, P&A will embark on a European tour starting this October. As for the album, here's what Woody had to say:

(Three Colours) Back in April, you posted on your website that you had begun recording the follow-up to Parc Avenue and that the "shit’s sounding goooood." What's the current status on this record?

(Matthew Woodley) The status is a rubik's cube with almost the whole green and yellow square done. White's getting closer and it looked like we had blue, but red keeps fucking with it and now there are blue and yellow squares all over the place. A few more moves. We're gonna steer clear of taking all the stickers off and solving it that way.

(TC) Should we expect an EP or an LP?

(MW) LP! Not as L as Parc Avenue if we can help ourselves.

(TC) Has the music evolved into something entirely different (from Parc Avenue)?

(MW) Less Beatles, more Rolling Stones.

(TC) Your first album was completely instrumental. Now when you write a song, do you start with an instrumental skeleton and then add lyrics, or is it the other way around?

(MW) It's the former. The lyrics are usually the very last thing. Sometimes Warren comes up with something the night before.

(TC) What sort of process do you guys go through in order to write a song? (like, do you guys write while on tour, or do you have to take time out and clear the head?)

(MW) Usually it's a rough structure Warren comes up with. Then we get together and play, approaching it pretty democratically. We record a bed track with just the three of us, and then it usually goes off into overdub land: adding more elements, sounds, vocals, etc. That's where we are now. It's getting a bit tiring - I miss the playing and interacting part, but it usually adds a lot to the shape and scope of a song. Then we learn how to play it again just us.

(TC) The band has been touring a lot off this last record - any memorable moments on the road (speeding tickets aside)?

(MW) The time we spent at La Frette studio in Paris recording in the spring was amazing. It's a big old manoir surrounded by big trees full of songbirds. Sleep, eat, work - we hardly wandered off the grounds the whole time we were there. We're going back at the end of the month to mix and I can't think of a better place (or better people) to tie this all up.

(TC) Do you have any favorite town or city that you look forward to returning to on your next tour now that you've covered pretty much the entire continent.

(MW) Hmmm. California is fun as a whole. Hopefully we can play more summer festivals in small towns in the future. Those are particularly fun - way more so than the big corporate ones.

(TC) What's your spirit animal and why?

(MW) Either an eagle, a moose or a chicken.