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Ikara Colt - Interview

  by Olga Sladeckova

published: 11 / 4 / 2002

Ikara Colt - Interview


One of the rising new punk bands in Britain, Ikara Colt recently toured with the Parkinsons and also have just released their debut album 'Chat and Business'. Olga Sladeckova talks backstage to Paul Resende and Dominic Young from the group about both

Ikara Colt are a London based punk band, who although sometimes controversial and shocking, play music that very much comes from the heart. The band, a 4 piece group, consists in its line-up of Jon Ball ( bass and keyboards) ; Claire Ingram (guitars and vocals) Paul Resende (vocals and keyboards) and Dominic Young (drums). Since their formation, in 1999, they have released three singles and an album, entitled ‘Chat And Business’ which, came out in February, but. despite extensive airplay on both John Peel and Steve Lamacq's British Radio 1 shows, did not chart after it was banned by the chart comiler CIN. Their music is, however, winning a bigger and bigger fan base, not only in Britain, but also in Europe. The band recently finished a UK tour with the Portugese-Scottish group the Parkinsons and the English band 80's Match Box B Line Disaster. Pennyblackmusic sneaked into Ikara Colt's dressing room on the last night of the tour two hours before the gig was due to begin, and talked to Paul and Dominic about their group. PB: Is it true that all of you met at art school in London? PR : Yeah, all four of us met at art school in London. We were on the same course in the same year. PB: Did you play in any other bands before Ikara Colt? PR: Only at school as kids, and just for fun, so this is our first proper band. PB: Why did you decide to call the band Ikara Colt? DY : It reminds me of the movement of a horse. You know, it has a good speed and can jump very well (Laughs). PR : (Laughs as well): Which we can all do… DY : Yeah. That’s it really. A bit of horse racing , although we have no time for actual real horse racing. PB: I have also heard that you named the band Ikara Colt after a gun. DY: That’s one person’s interpretation. This is my interpretation. You have your own (Laughs). PR : This is our imaginary horse. PB: How do you collaborate on writing music and lyrics? PR : All four of us pretty much do the music, and I do the lyrics. PB: What inspires you the most when you are writing the lyrics? PR: Life, friends, books,… DY : Russian writers ? PR : Yeah, that’s right. PB: Who is your favourite writer? PR : My favourite writer? A Russian guy called Mikhail Bulgakov. He was one of the Russian writers who couldn't be published because their novels and plays were in controversy with the policy of the USSR government. Basically if he didn’t write what the government told him to, he wasn't allowed to get published. He wrote ‘The Master And Margarita’ while he was in a concentration camp in Siberia. He had it memorized in his head. The whole book! And then he wrote it out in manuscript . It was finally published in 1967 even though it was written in the 20’s. There is a good line in it that says: “Manuscripts don’t burn.” You can’t just send somebody to Siberia. You can’t just burn the truth. The truth will always be here. It’s a very powerful book and, even with all the myth behind, it remains a fucking good book. You can read it and it will go the way you want it to go. That’s what a good book should be like. That’s what makes a good piece of art. You watch it and if you want to go deeper in it, it will just go deeper and deeper, as deep you want to go. PB: How did you first make contact with Fantastic Plastic records who have released all your music to date? PR: What happened was we were playing a few gigs in Camden and we also made a demo tape.. That was about two years ago. We started sending that demo to record labels, and also by chance Steve Lamacq was at a gig and he really liked our music, and asked for a demo and then played it on a radio. We continued to contact record labels, and some of them ignored us, but then we found Fantastic Plastic. They just said: “Your music is good, so let’s do something!”. That’s exactly how we wanted things to be. We just wanted to get something out there as soon as possible. PB : Over the course of the last three years, you have become quite a popular band. Was there any point that you suddenly became aware of your growing popularity and realized that things were really happening for you? PR : For me it was last year's Reading Festival really. We were on really, really early. We were the second band on, at about 12 o’clock so we didn’t expect much ,but then I remember walking out and the field was full of people! We were so surprised that people got up and came to watch us. We were like: “Oh my God! What is happening?!” Yeah, that was the point for me anyway. PB: You have recently released your debut album ‘Chat and Business’. How satisfied are you with it? PR : We are very happy with it. The way it was recorded and also how quick it was. You know, some records take weeks and weeks, but this one was very straight. What you hear is what you get. We captured the spirit it was made in sincerely, and I think it’s a really good album. PB: Who designed the artwork cover for the album? DY : It was a company called Praline. They are friends of the band. And they delivered a very cold looking image, which was also very anticipative with rock n’ roll. That’s what we wanted though,. It is not a cover for a standard band. It's a dialogue with the punk images of the late 70’s and is timeless in a way. It stands the test of time. I believe so anyway. Just like the album. PB: What do you have to say about the chart compilers CIN who banned 'Chat & Business' from charts saying that the stickers, which the CD box contains, are gimmicky? PR: Fuck them. We never formed the band to get in charts. People are still buying it, so that’s what matters. We just want to get out and play our music to people who like it. DY: It was a dialogue between the inside sleeve and the outside sleeve. It’s an exceptional piece of artwork. They see it as a gimmick, but they are the ones who are a gimmick! PB: You have just played at the London Calling event in Amsterdam. How did you enjoy the ecperience and were you satisfied with your performance ? PR : It was really good. The people there were shocked , weren’t they? Every single band on the bill was failry acoustic. We were the last band on and when we played the first song, they were pretty stunned, but then they warmed up a bit and we definitely won them over. I think they were definitely a bit taken aback at first, but that’s good. I enjoyed it. PB: It’s known that John Peel is also a fan of yours. Do you know where he heard your music? PR : We sent him a demo and he liked it and gave us a Peel Radio 1 session . He has been really kind to us. PB: I have also heard that you are going to be playing at one of John Peel's sessions in Maida Vale studios in April. Is that right? PR : I think so... you seem to know more than we do. (Laughs) DY: Yeah we will be playing there and that’s a great award for us. We are looking forward to it very much. PB : You are playing tonight the last gig of the tour with The Parkinsons and 80’s Match Box B Line Disaster. How satisfied have you been with the tour and who picked such a line-up? PR : The tour was great! 10 out of 10. The bands picked each other really. DY : We knew we had to do a big line-up. PR : It was a natural thing and a winner. I’d go. I’d buy a ticket. DY : They are both new bands and fresh and they believe in music rather then just believing in units. It was a great tour with great people. PB: What are you plans for the near future? DY : Sleep! (laughs) PR : Yeah, sleep. Maybe a wash as well. (laughs) And after that we want to release another single. PB: Will the single be coming out on Fantastic Plastic as with your other stuff? PR : We think so. We are positive about it. PB : Do you know yet if you will be playing any of the year’s festivals this summer? PR : I think we have been booked for the Reading/Leeds thing. And we don’t know about Glastonbury yet, but they only decide like about an hour ago before it starts. And hopefully we will play some festivals in Europe. That would be nice to do. The London Calling gig was our first gig outside the UK and we loved it. PB: What do you have to say about your music? DY : It’s not a B-version of any other band. It’s stands on its own character. PR : Yeah We never formed the band to play like any other band. PB: You have achieved a lot in music so far. Do you have an ideal of where you want to go with your music? DY : I’m happy with what we achieved so far nothing else. Everything else is a bonus. PB: Do you think Ikara Colt is still evolving and changing? PR : Yeah, you don’t want to stagnate and to start rewriting songs, but I don’t think we are that kind of a band. We are not afraid to be different and rather than get stuck in some kind of formula we are not afraid to try something new. DY : There will be different textures and shades. It’s like anything with art. You can’t just start repeating the same thing. You’ve got to progress and take a few gambles but you will never hear us doing acoustics. PR : We know what we are good at. DR : Yeah, we respect it but we are not going to do that. Do what you good at. PB: Which present bands do you listen to? DR : The 80's Match Box B Line Disaster. PR : For the last 3 weeks I’ve been listening to the 80’s Match Box B Line Disaster and the Parkinsons. (Both laugh.) Whenever we play a gig they seem to be playing the same place. I’m starting to think it’s a bit of a coincidence. It’s happening again tonight, but yeah, I’m happy with that. PB: Thank you for your time and good luck tonight. PR & DY: Thank you. The photographs that accompany this article were taken by Matthew Williams

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Ikara Colt - Interview

Ikara Colt - Interview

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London Astoria, 20/4/2002
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Chat And Business (2002)
One of the most controversial albums of the year, Ikara Colt's 'Chat and Business has been praised in some quarters and ridiculed in others, but proves to be a debut album with "exactly the same flaws that can be found" on many other debut albums

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