Hello, and welcome back to another entry of the Phile, kids. Today's interview is with a Scottish twee pop band that achieved success with Sarah Records. Welcome to the Peverett Phile... The Orchids.
Me: Hello, guys, how are you? Hope all is well. Are you back home in Scotland?
The Orchids: We’re all doing fine and looking forward to a busy time musically in 2009.
Me: So, tell me about the Orchids... who is in the band currently?
The Orchids: At present there is Chris, James, John, Ronnie and Keith, been that way since we got back together in November 2003.
Me: Are you all from Glasgow? How is the weather there?
The Orchids: All Glaswegian’s by birth and we all stay in and around the city limits.
As for the weather it’s cold and damp, but really a bad winter so far.
Me: I heard you played in New York at New York City Popfest. That wasn't your first time playing New York, was it? Do you get to the States often?
The Orchids: The NYC Popfest was our first gig in New York, first in the USA but hopefully we’ll be back sometime soon. In terms of being tourist we have visited over the years.
Me: When did the band form, and how did you become together?
The Orchids: The Orchids formed back in 1985, Chris, James and John where all friends from school and the same area of Glasgow, just started jamming in John’s house, making various noises etc. and it just came from that. Later on we where joined by James Moody on bass and Mathew Drummond on guitar. Did some demos and a friend sent them to Sarah and the rest is history.
Me: And where did the name The Orchids come about?
The Orchids: That’s a good question with various answers, I remember us being asked to put a song on a flexi disc and at the time we were called The Splendour. Another band where to contribute a song as well The Orchids. The fanzine that was putting it together got the labels wrong which resulted in both bands trading names, either that or it’s all Greek to us.
Me: You guys split up in '95 and reformed in '04. What made you split up, and reform again? And in the meantime what did you guys do?
The Orchids: In terms of splitting , guess it just start to unravel bit like a long term relationship, also you get to that age where choices have to be made in terms of important things in life, work, marriage, children. So in that respect it just kinds slipped away. Getting back together in some form was always discussed at pub level and under the influence of alcohol. Finally after many false dawns, we booked a rehearsal room in November 2003.
Me: Was it weird playing together back on stage for the first time in a while?
The Orchids: The first gig back in London was good, it sold out before the date and I think we pulled off a great gig. People travelled form California, Sweden, Spain, Belgium and they gave us a great reception and I don’t think we disappointed them.
Me: Your last album came out in 2007 called "Good To Be A Stranger" and I liked it a lot. Are you working on new music right now?
The Orchids: At this moment we’re rehearsing new songs which we hope to start recording soon. Already sounding different the last album and we’re going down the DIY method, having bought our own recording desk.
Me: I saw you did a video for one of your songs... "Another Saturday Night" I think. Was that your first video and how was it doing it? What was the idea behind it?
The Orchids: Glad you liked the video as it was shot in the town of Prestwick on a very cold, wet and windy day January 07. The idea was all down to our friends at Jangle films, loosely based on the Tom hanks film Big. As you can see the mini Orchids out acted us in very scene.
Me: Tell the Phile readers about Sarah Records. I know a little about it, but not much. You are no longer on that label, right? What is your new label?
The Orchids: Sarah were a great label to be with, Matt & Claire where great music lovers and just left us to get on with it. Always supportive. Sarah as a label ended in 1994 with a farewell gig and Matt & Claire went their separate ways in life and business. At this point in time we’re homeless, we’ll make the new album and see who wants it.
Me: Who were some label mates of y ours on Sarah Records?
The Orchids: Field Mice, The Wake, Secret Shine, Harvey Williams to name a few.
Me: I heard you guys did cover of a Go-Betweens song. How did that come about? What song was it? Are you friends of the Go-Betweens? And for readers that don't know who they are, wanna tell them?
The Orchids: David James from Rare Victory Records decided to release a tribute album after Grant Mclennan died. He asked various bands from all over the globe to contribute. We chose to cover “Magic In Here” which was one of The Go-Betweens later songs. The Go-Betweens are legends of the 80’s music scene hailing from Australia they where signed to the legendary Scottish indie label Postcard Records and went to make record some classic albums and singles.
Me: Describe what a Scottish twee band is.
The Orchids: Never been in a Scottish twee band and so I can’t answer that question.
Me: You guys have a habit of using words I never heard of before... Thaumaturgy, Lyceum, Epicurean. What do they mean?
The Orchids: It’s the benefit of a good Scottish Education and afternoons studying the classics and latin.
Me: Tell me where the title "Striving For the Lazy Perfection" came from. That could almost be the title for my autobiography. Is there a song called that?
The Orchids: “Striving For The Lazy Perfection” is a song from which the album takes it’s name, the song can be found there too. James wrote the song and it sounded like a good title for the album.
Me: Okay, do you have anything you wanna plug?
The Orchids: Nothing for sale at present.
Me: I hope this interview was fun. Good luck and I hope you get to come back to America real soon.
The Orchids: Have a nice day and see you in LA.
The Orchids: Have a nice day and see you in LA.
Thanks to The Orchids for taking time and doing this interview. By the way, Wikipedia described the band as a Scottish twee band. If I ever interview another Scottish band I'll ask them what it is. So, the Phile will be back on Phriday with a special Watchmen entry, then on Saturday it's that member from a band I am not telling you about. Put it this way, though, I had to squeeze the information out of him. Heh heh. On Sunday it's the band Untamed Youth, then the Phriday after that the Phile will go through some changes. Until then, spread the word, not the turd.