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James Cooper - Interview Part 2

  by Anthony Strutt

published: 7 / 1 / 2007

James Cooper - Interview Part 2


In the second and final part of his interview with Palace Fires, the new band of former Gene stars Matt James and Steve Mason, Anthony Strutt talks to the group about why they decided to release their first two singles on 7@ and downloads only, and their forthcoming album plans

PB : You have released both your singles on 7” and also as downloads. Why did you bring them out on 7” rather than CD ? EB : I have always bought 7” singles since I was a kid. It is just so much more of a package than a CD, which is just a piece of data. A download is another piece of data. Vinyl is something which is made individually. It is much more of a romantic thing. It is a nice piece of nostalgia. MJ : They are nicer things that CDs. We wanted to do something that was limited. We did the downloads so that people from abroad can get a hold of our music, but we wanted to do something limited and it was between a 7” and a CD. PB : How limited were both singles ? ED : There were 1000 of each. SM : I checked the market and there are hundreds of new bands releasing 7 inches. It’s like your calling card. If you are fans, and you went out and bought the first single of a 1000 only release, then you know that you’re the dudes that got the band started on their way and you have the physical proof that you were there. If you download songs, however, what does that mean ? PB : Is it your own label ? MJ : Yes, it is. Bespoke Records is ours. We get some help from Setanta Records as well. They helped with the distribution, but we are not tied to them in anyway. We were helped by them. SM : It was like a gentlemen’s agreement. They liked our stuff and wanted to help. We didn’t have the funds to put out a record, and so they put their money where their mouth is. Well, Keith (Cullen, Setanta’s owner-Ed) did. They are into good music and he realized that he wanted to keep a sense of independence. We record everything by ourselves at home and own the recordings, so as a collective we are Bespoke Records. Setanta gave us a lift. PB : How much material have you actually written now ? MJ : We have maybe seventeen songs at the moment. A lot of those might not see the light of day or may get reworked. PB : Everything is recorded ? MJ : Yeah, it is recorded. ED : We don’t do demos. MJ : It is about a mix away from being releasable. It depends on if we want to release it. I think we will do some more work on it and maybe add one or two more songs. SM : We don’t do demos because we produce ourselves. We don’t go into big studios with big producers. Those days are over. We now have an understanding of what a record is sonically and in the arrangements. We have no plans to go to producers whom are going to change our sound. For both the singles we recorded the drums in a studio. The rest was, however, recorded in the basement of my house. Our bass player Mike comes from a studio background. It is a massive help. PB : Do you take a more or a less laid back approach to music nowadays ? Have you all got day jobs ? SM : I was doing the XFM thing and other pieces. Matt had been managing bands including Mower, but basically we both took eight or nine months out. We did enough to get the album and the set together and we took it as far as we could until the money ran out. We do other things now, but none of us are doing things that are more important than the band. We do day stuff to help it along. PB : What are you future plans ? MJ : We’re going to do another single on Bespoke. There is a lot of interest in the industry about the band. We are getting a lot of radio, but we are not naïve anymore. It’s just a case of finding good people to work with. PB : Thank you.

Picture Gallery:-
James Cooper - Interview Part 2

James Cooper - Interview Part 2

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