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Monday 9th August, 2010 1:48PM

Nich (and sometimes Jared) from the ever elusive Thieves have recently released their debut EP. They tell us all about it and why the American president would be proud of their band.

How long have you been playing together as Thieves?

N: About a week after we stole all that equipment...

Where are you currently based?

N: I wouldn't like to say, see previous answer.

What’s the current line-up?

N: Currently, we're operating under these aliases: Kari, Nich & Jared. Steve used to be in the band but he's gone away, so we're playing as a three piece right now but keeping an eye out for a potential replacement.

What other bands/projects have you been involved in?

N: There are no other bands - only Thieves.

Jared: Breast Secreting Cake, The Subliminals

It’s awfully difficult to Google your band. Did that have anything to do with choosing the name?

N: Umm, no. We just didn't think about it very hard. If you spell it with three s's it becomes a lot easier.

How would you describe your sound?

N: That's always a hard question to answer. There are definitely elements of noisy Flying Nun bands; at times it gets more dark and atmospheric, at other times more straight ahead power-pop. Maybe go to and decide for yourself?

Can you tell me a bit about recording your self-titled EP?

N: We recorded the EP at Black Door studios, which is a space I share with Daryl from Malevolence. That made it easy, because we could take our time. I engineered, which basically meant I turned into a control freak and insisted on take after take until my delusions -of-Spectre were satisfied. Somehow the other guys enjoyed the process too. We tended to experiment a bit with over dubs but then strip it back in the mix. Later on, we got Angus McNaughton to master it so we could have it bit of objective third party input.

Does the cover to your EP represent anything in particular?

N: It’s a bunch of severed hands. In some places that’s what happens to you if you're a thief. We didn't come up it, this guys Brad who designed it for us thought of it. It’s a good image.

There is a song on your myspace entitled “Imbeingstalkedbythenationalbankhorse” which might just be the greatest name for a song ever. Is there a story behind it?

N: That song sucks. Steve wrote it. Or to put it another way, don't you get the impression that horse is stalking people in those TV commercials? It’s always hanging around outside people’s windows and crashing their weddings.

J: That horse is scary; he has the ability to pop up at the most important parts of your life and demand loan repayments.

How do you write songs as a band?

N: Normally, Steve or I would come up with something and bring it to practice. Then we vaguely discuss the idea behind it and let everyone make their own contribution. It’s good because other people always seem to come up with an idea or angle that you wouldn't have thought of yourself. It’s quite democratic. If Obama had a band that’s how he'd do it.

Who / what are the three biggest influences for the band?

N: That's hard to pin down. Things often filter through from unexpected sources, but when we started this band Steve and I were both quite into Big Star and Wilco. That’s probably what we were trying to sound like but it didn't work out that way. At the moment I'm enjoying the new Liars album.

Are you working on any more releases at the moment?

N: Yes, we're writing new material and we should be able to put together another EP this year. I like making EP’s, it’s more like a side of a record.

Do you have any tours of the country planned?

N: Not at present, just working on new material.

What are your tour essentials?

N: Previous experience has shown me that Neurofen or Asprin is essential.

J: An assortment of Frisbees and the other two members of the band.

Where / when was the best show you think you’ve ever played?

N: Probably May last year at Whammy. It was a Music Month thing. Everyone had to play two of their own songs and two covers of an 80's NZ band. We did the Gordons. It was a competition and we won. The prize was a bar tab. You can see where I'm going with this...

J: Our first show, at Whammy - Rheineck Rock awards concept piss take! We played two Gordons tracks and two of our own and took away the grand prize of a $400 bar tab.

Do you have a favourite band to play with?

N: No.

What are you listening to at the moment?

N: I'm literally listening to John Coltrane right now. I’ve also been enjoying Faust's first album too.

J: Them Crooked Vultures, just rediscovered Metallica’s Master of Puppets, Battles, Lightspeed Champion.

In your opinion, the state of music in NZ is….

N: Good. There are quite a few interesting bands. And it’s easy to ignore the annoying ones.

Gareth Meade