Liars is now a solo project. Remaining member Angus Andrew published his album called “TFCF” in August. We met for a coffee in Prenzlauerberg and talked about his new release, his artistic practice and pop-culture.
You studied art. Would you say, that your studies influenced you in the way you work today / in what you are doing today?
Yes, actually I didn’t do music before I went to art school. I was doing photography mostly, but I wanted to be a multi-media artist, so I I was doing a variety of things. One of them became working with sound. Then I started to write songs. Today I still feel more like an artist than a musician.
Your latest album is called “TFCF”, “Theme from crying fountain”. Why did you choose that name?
The record that I made was quite sad. I was very emotional at that time. I live near a lot of waterfalls. Once I sat next to one and I thought of the spreading water as tears, and I thought that this picture in my head represented my state of mind very well.
On the cover of your album, we can see you in a white wedding dress! How come?
Mostly I am working together with other people. This time I did something completely on my own. I often felt married to my collaborators, but this time I just felt like a lonely bride.
Do you think the role of the internet has advantages or disadvantages?
You can’t stop it. So I don’t see much point in worrying how it should be or whatever. There are a lot of advantages, especially for artists. Visuals and videos become important, just another extension of doing art. A disadvantage is maybe that there is too much information sometimes. From time to time, I would just prefer not to know so much about people, I like it more when there is a kind of a mystery.
How would you define the words “pop” and ”pop-culture”?
The obvious thing is that pop-culture is fleeting and sort of plastic. But at the same time it can be embraced, and there are ways to use pop-culture in a more interesting way than only preserving it. I think of interesting things to take from pop-culture and then rethink it and put it back in the world.
Would you say there was a specific point when you developed from a subcultural into a pop-cultural artist?
It’s hard for me to say. It tends to be more in the mind of the listener. I do like to make songs, things that work like pop-songs, but in a really sort of backwards way. It’s interesting to blur the line between pop and experimental music.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I was living in the bush in Australia. I spent a lot time just listening to the environment, which is really intense there. You have the waves, the wind, the animals, very interesting rhythms. Sometimes they fit together, sometimes they oppose each other. I appreciate this idea in relation to music.
How does your process of creating something start?
Well, a few months before I start to do something, I think about what I wanna achieve. I always have a relatively clear idea of what I want to achieve in the end.
You lived in Berlin as well. Do you think there is a difference of being an artist in Europe compared to the U.S.?
I think it always depends on the person and how you want to react to your environment.
I am isolated, I don’t spend lot of time being around people. So for me it doesn’t matter if I am living in L.A., NY, in the bush or in Berlin.
Have you ever been to Vienna?
Yes, very beautiful place. We played there a few times, also at Donaufestival, it was cool.
Text by Elisabeth Brandauer