Purson Talk "The Circle And The Blue Door"
Mon, 29 Apr 2013 08:53:55
"It's fucking good isn't it?" Purson singer and guitarist Rosalie Cunningham says of the new Black Sabath song "God is Dead?"
"I'm on a bit of a high after hearing it," she goes on. "It's like a medley of all their great songs".
You know what else is "fucking good"? Purson's new album The Circle and the Blue Door. The quintet spins soothingly sly psychedelia through vaudevillian rock with touches of mystical folk. It's an elegant tapestry of sounds that are as wonderfully entrancing as they are ethereal. In essence, it's not only "fucking good", it's one of the most innovative and intriguing albums of 2013.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Purson's Rosalie Cunningham and Samuel Shove open The Circle And The Blue Door.
What threads The Circle and The Blue Door together for you?
Rosalie Cunningham: Well, The Circle threads everything together. Do you know what I mean?
Samuel Shove: That was inspired by a friend of ours. It's relative to a journey Rosalie took involving herself and others around her. It's intended to be a unifying piece and an emotional journey.
Rosalie Cunningham: Myself, Sam, his ex-boyfriend, and our old bass player Ed all lived together. Sam and I made it. The others were sectioned though. We came out un-sectioned. They got sectioned though. They were put away in a mental hospital.
Samuel Shove: The album is basically representative of a quite turbulent year.
Rosalie Cunningham: The record is born after that.
Did the record come together fairly quickly?
Rosalie Cunningham: Some of the songs were several years old. I wrote them when I was 15-years-old even like "The Tragic Catastrophe". Most of them came together within a year.
Is it important for you to tell stories and paint pictures with the songs?
Rosalie Cunningham: It's extremely important. It's not just playing scales, is it? [Laughs]
Samuel Shove: The music is very textural, and that's something I feel quite attuned to. When I perform live, it's very important to represent the tone and mood of the music through the way we look and act on stage. It's not a bunch of people in stonewashed jeans. This is psychedelic, patterned, and layered. It's very colorful. It's not your average denim-and-leather band. This requires a lot of thought visually. That's what we try to put into everything we release. We're quite conscious of the artwork and music videos.
What does "Tragic Catastrophe" mean to you?
Rosalie Cunningham: I wrote it when I was in my last band Ipso Facto. The lyrics used to be very different. It used to be about how much I hated them. They were very embarrassing, and I couldn't sing them. I decided to sing about something a bit more relevant, which is how much I would like to be a rock star. It's a Ziggy Stardust tribute. It's a kid who would like to be a rock star, please. Thank you very much.
What's the story behind "Mavericks & Mystics"?
Rosalie Cunningham: That's about Sam's ex-boyfriend. When he got sectioned, he was saying a lot of things, and the album is based around many of those things. He said quite a bit about a "Blue Door". Ironically, he went to the Sapphire Ward. He made a lot of friends in his own mind, and they were his "Mavericks & Mystics". We were visiting him and trying to get through. For a long time, I put myself in his shoes.
There's a cinematic element to the music. Do films play a big part in inspiration?
Rosalie Cunningham: There's a cinematic element, but it comes from theater rather than cinema. I watch those Hammer Horror films, and they look fucking awesome, but I wouldn't say I'm inspired by them. I'm inspired by music. There is a Dickensian storytelling element though. Samuel Shove: Victorian gothic horror might play a role as well. We're quite enamored with creating our own world that we experience. We want the listeners to feel what we've felt in our lives. If The Circle and The Blue Door were a movie, what would it be?
Rosalie Cunningham: Take James Bond, Suspiria, and Edgar Allan Poe and mix them up [Laughs].
Have you experienced Purson yet?