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Carb on Carb

Carb on Carb

Interviewed by
Michael McClelland
Tuesday 3rd July, 2012 10:51AM

Formed from the ashes of bands such as Mammal Airlines and Moron Says What, new two-piece Carb on Carb have just released their first EP no body perfect. To celebrate they're joining forces with Cool Cult, who have also just release an EP, for a North Island tour kicking off this week in Wellington.   We caught up with the band over email to get their back story...

The last time we spoke to you both, the Pressure To Be 18-and-under compilation had just been released. How did everything go with that?

James (J): It went well, and seemed to be appreciated – we just recently sold out of the CDs. The compilation is free on bandcamp now. We were planning to release a follow-up zine documenting what happened to the bands a year on but we just haven’t been able to bring it together with all the other stuff we’ve got going on. It’s still coming though!

Lliam’s (Cool Cult) probably the last remaining person on that compilation who is still under 18 - what’s been happening for Cool Cult lately?

Nicole (N): Well Eddie from Lontalius is still under 18, and Lliam is turning 18 pretty soon. I’m really excited about where Cool Cult are heading right now, they’ve just put out an EP and we’ll be touring with them in a couple of weeks.

J: They were real good at their EP release show last night, so excited to tour with them. This morning when we drove into the garage we had the EP up so loud that we set the house alarm off and didn’t notice \m/.

Have you noticed any other new young bands come about recently?

N: There doesn’t seem to be many new new young bands rocking around from what I’ve seen, but there are a whole bunch of “old hands” forming new bands, which is really great to see. Bands that were around when I went to high school in Auckland forming new bands with each other etc.

There are some interesting sounding bands supporting you on the tour – who are they?

N: Foxtrot is ma gurl Flo Wilson, she has the voice/lips of an angel. We haven’t seen most of the bands playing with us on this tour which makes it much more exciting.

J: I met Jacob from Sweater at the Times New Viking show in Wellington, and saw a video of them and it seemed pretty sweet. The Stomach (Palmerston North) organised the other bands playing there, but I have faith in them. Caves is the band of Jack Mitchell-Anyon who runs Space Monster (Whanganui). Careerwolf is what Lawree from Tied on Teeth is up to. Bangladesh used to be The Good Fun. And Auckland show – are our friends Grass Cannons + Ralph; Chalk Horses grew out of Rifles.

So how did Carb On Carb come together after Mammal Airlines?

J: Nicole and I wanted to keep playing music together, and she had a few songs hidden away that hadn’t been suitable for previous projects.

N: Most of the Carb on Carb songs are songs I wrote after Moron Says What and during Mammal Airlines, some were actually intended to be for a band Alessandra, Gabi and I (members from Moron Says What) were gonna start but didn’t because I moved to Wellington.

Who wrote the songs in Mammal Airlines/Moron Says What?

N: With Moron Says What we wrote songs as a group, it was really democratic in a way that if one of us didn’t like a part of a song, we’d scrap it and start fresh. Therefore it was hard to get together a lengthy set.

J: Mammal Airlines started off as Giles and I. I did most of the playing cos he was still learning guitar, but he deserves equal credit for the song writing, though he refuses to accept it. Once Nicole joined and Giles got good at guitar the dynamic changed a bit, probably got more individually independent, but remained very collaborative. I wouldn’t say any of the songs were written by only one of us.

How does Carb On Carb differ lyrically?

N: I’ve always been pretty bad at writing lyrics, I’m the kind of person who focuses on the music rather than the lyrics so Carb on Carb’s lyrics have been a learning process for me. The songs have been mostly about girly things rather than food or sleep or Wikipedia. The lyrics for ‘Dear Men Hello’ were actually written by Alessandra and the lyrics for ‘Trace Minerals’ were written by James.

Are you enjoying being in a band with fewer members?

N: OMG yes. It’s so much easier to organise just two people rather than three or four. But I do miss band practices with more people coz it’s more like a little party and if you’re angry at one person in the band you could always just talk to someone else.

Where’d the name Carb On Carb come from?

N: Basically I just really love carbohydrates. Whenever I cook it’s always gonna be potato curry on rice or potato pizza or noodle sandwiches or other carby goodness.

Is Carb On Carb going to release the EP via Papaiti Records? Will it be a free one?

J: For sure! Free from Papaiti and Bandcamp and on CD for $7.

Speaking of which, what’s going on for Papaiti lately? A Capsul remix album?

J: Yeah I’ve been trying to put that together for years! It turned out really nice and I’m very grateful to everyone who got involved. It’s really quite interesting how other people interpret your songs (and feelings I guess) and it was fun to make a release that was much more social in nature. I also just released a Capsul EP called Bookcase. Trying to get my messy past few years of song writing organised, and release the stuff that’s any good. Bootlegs still going as always.

How’ve you found it in Auckland since you moved there, in terms of people and music?

J: It’s been quite an adjustment, so many little differences from my life in Wellington. But now I’ve settled in and it’s pretty great. So many more shows on offer, and more people and bands to meet and new places to explore. Do have to burn petrol to go anywhere though.

N: It’s been quite different to when I used to live here, you know, friends move on with their lives and family turn your old bedroom into a walk in wardrobe for my dad. But overall it’s been good, there is so much more going on here musically and being able to drive out to a beach or a massive park has been really great.


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