Reviews

Klammer – Interview


Interview with Paul ‘Poss’ Strickland – Vocals; Steve Whitfield – Guitars, Fender VI, Keys and Backing Vocals of Klammer and Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)

PD – What type of artist are you?

POSS: We nearly always get pigeon-holed as Post-Punk tinged with a little bit of Goth but we just think of ourselves as Klammer. We have elements of the genres mentioned but I think we also have a good Pop sensibility, check out some of our choruses!

STEVE: When it comes down to it we are simply a rock band. 50 years ago there was just Rock and Pop bands, it must have been so simple then. At the same time I understand why people want these genres and I guess the closest one to us is Port-Punk. Under that banner there’s been had disparate bands like Cabaret Voltaire, Magazine, Orange Juice, Franz Ferdinand and now Fontaines D.C., so Post-Punk is a very broad church of a description.

 

PD – Tell us the brief history of yourself.

POSS: Steve and I met through a mutual friend who I was in a band with. Steve did a mix of a song by that band and then asked me to sing on some song ideas he had. It started as a “one-off” project but before long we’d written an album’s worth of songs and so decided to recruit a drummer and bass player. We played our first gigs back in 2014 and we have never looked back!

STEVE: Yeah we did it all back to front at the beginning, we wrote and recorded the first album before we were a band and hadn’t even thought of playing a gi g at that point.

 

PD – Who are your musical and non-musical influences?

POSS: Musically it’s David Bowie from the age of 11 and then the UK Punk and Post-Punk movement in the late ’70s. My non-musical influences is a tough one to answer, I’m not a big movie fan but I enjoy reading a lot of non-fiction. In all honesty, if I’m not writing lyrics, singing or playing the guitar then I’m spinning vinyl!!!

STEVE: I got into Punk/Post Punk and Kraftwerk as a teenager and although my taste in music has expanded over the years, I still really like noisy/angular guitar music and electronic music. My main non-musical influences would be films (I like that you have to condense the ideas into 2-3 hours worth of story telling) art, photography and books.

 

PD – What are your dreams and goals?

STEVE: Obviously to keep pushing to see how far we can take it, but for me keeping on writing/recording/playing and enjoying it is more important.

POSS: I’m a bit long in the tooth to have big dreams but my goal would definitely be to be the singer for Klammer for as long as is humanly possible and for the band to be as successful as possible.

 

PD – Who writes your songs, what are they about?

POSS: Up until recently the song writing has been me and Steve. Steve generally comes up with the music and, once we’ve found the right arrangement, I add the lyrics. We have just started writing in the rehearsal studio as a whole band and we already have two new songs!

STEVE: Yeah that’s the way it’s worked out so far, but with the new ideas I’ve got for the unwritten 5th Album, I’m purposely not recording them. We’ll take them into rehearsals and do it the old way of working it all out with the 4 of us there together.

 

PD – How do you promote your band and shows?

STEVE: Many long hours on social media! I don’t enjoy it but it has to be done.

 

PD – What do you think about downloading music online?

POSS: I think downloading music can be beneficial in some respects. People often download your music and that inspires them to see your band live on stage (where they might even buy a record or t-shirt!). When it comes to streaming then that’s a big rip off for the artist, it’s way beyond time that the streaming platforms start to pay out fairly.

STEVE: The industry is in a very sad state, and I applaud some of the bigger artists that take a stand against some of the streaming companies.

 

PD – What song do you wish you’d written and why?

POSS: “Heroes” by Bowie because it’s such an emotional piece of music

STEVE: ‘Love will tear us apart’ or ‘Smells like teen spirit’, both have such edgy atmosphere in them but have fantastic melodies in them. I love Kurt’s simple 2 note guitar part in the verses and the way the lead guitar in the middle 8 is just the vocal melody but on guitar. I would also have to say Hereos as well.

 

PD – What are some of your pet peeves?

POSS: Autotune…it’s on everything you hear in the “Pop” charts these days!

Steve: Well I’d say the over use of Autotune. In manual mode it’s a useful tool to have in the studio, just to tune the very occasional note but on automatic it’s hideous! Sometimes you have a great vocal take and maybe just one word may need a little help, but if you can hear it working, then for me don’t use it. The way a lot of pop producers use it in a heavy handed automatic way on the whole vocal kills any character that person’s voice might have, and they all end up sounding the same.

My other pet peeve is excessive tuning of guitars between songs at gigs.

 

PD – What is your proudest moment in music?

Steve: With Klammer it’d probably between getting played on BBC 6 Music and playing to a full 100 Club. In my studio capacity, engineering an album with The Cure  (Wish) would also be up there!

POSS: The100 Club!!!

 

PD – So what are you working on at the moment?

Steve: Well the new album has been finished for a while (recording, mixing, artwork, videos ,etc) and we’ve learnt how to play them live. So we are now getting back to writing some new songs and organising gigs.

 

PD – What music have you available online and where can we buy it from?

Steve: You can find us at all the usual places on line (Apple, Spotify, Amazon, Deezer, YouTube, etc).

But here’s the Pre-Save/Add links for the single and album –
https://bfan.link/progress-or-the-lack-of
https://bfan.link/the-day-before-yesterday

The new album will also be available at
https://revolverrecords.com/store/

or direct from us at gigs

You can also buy any of our earlier releases (CD + Vinyl) from our website
https://www.klammer.co.uk

Klammer links:
Band location – Leeds England
Website – Facebook – You Tube – Soundcloud – Bandcamp – Reverbnation –
Twitter – Instagram – Apple – Spotify – Amazon – Deezer – Last Fm
Check our page for Klammer


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