It's an absolute pleasure to bring you the UK premiere of 'Two', one of the highlights of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros new self-titled album. As a band we've featured in the past we can tell you that the new record lives up to all expectations and continues their communal journey through psych/pop/indie/soul and other sounds that will thrill, inspire and generally improve your life. Before we unveil 'Two' (which you can find at the bottom of the page), we were lucky enough to throw a few questions at Nora from the band. Here's what she had to say.
TSOC: There are an awful lot of you in the group - do you see much of each other outside of "band time" or are the relationships mostly work-based?
Nora: It is a pretty idyllic experience to get to explore new cities with your best friends, and therefore we do see an awful lot of each other outside of the shows. We do a lot of adventuring, bike rides, and just general fooling around. But I will say that alone time on tour is very hard to come by, so it's good to keep a balance between friend time and alone time. But no, the relationships in this band are far from just work-based.
TSOC: With so many members does this become an asset or a hindrance when it comes to writing? Like too many cooks spoiling the broth?
N: A song is a very personal thing, and often has a very purposeful meaning. For us it seems to work much better if one person brings in a seed of a song, or a fully finished song, and then that seed is watered by the other members of the band, as opposed to trying to have it be a completely communal process.
TSOC: What's it like touring? I guess it must be like a big school vacation! Do you all get along OK?
N: We've had our moments, as any group would being on tour for six years. But yes, we get along great. It's really an incredible amount of fun to get to travel around with such lovely and interesting people.
TSOC: Can you give us an interesting fact about a member of the band that no one else knows?
N: Stewart is rapidly becoming a coffee connoisseur. He weighs the grains on a scale he travels with.
TSOC: Where abouts do you think the new album stands compared to the others? Do you have a favourite?
N: I love this album. I think it pushes both the musicians and the listener to pay a greater level of attention to the songs. This is not a lazy listening album, it commands attention.
TSOC: And which song off the new record is your favourite and why?
N: I don’t have a favorite, but 'Life is Hard' is one I love to play live. 'If I were free' is also a lot of fun because I get to play the omnichord.
TSOC: We get exposed to a lot of new music - some is great and some... isn't. Can you give us any new band tips?
N: Tame Impala - 'Lonerism' is one of my favorite albums of the year. Also, Blake Mills - 'Break Mirrors', Cass McCombs - 'County Line', and Gonzales - 'Solo Piano'.
TSOC: If you could pick one person, dead or alive to work with on a song or album who would it be?
N: Jon Brion, who is very much alive.
TSOC: What's the most stereotypically rock n' roll thing you've ever done? Any TVs out of windows and so on?
N: I went through a mini crowd surfing phase a few years back. At both Coachella, and Lolapalooza, I wore special crowd surfing shorts under my dresses, so I could surf without fear.
TSOC: Finally the tricky one - fantasy festival time! You guys are headlining and you can pick five other acts, past or present to join you on the bill. Who do you go for?
Bulgarian Female Choir
Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros' website