- Thu, 2012-12-20 19:47
Dublin's synthesizer-loving four-piece Le Galaxie have conquered their home country and have already embarked on their quest for a stage near you. Over this past summer they hit the European festival scene and expanded their fanbase beyond familiar territory. Blending live instruments with digital equipment they've become Ireland's most popular electronic act. Le Galaxie have a mass following, a reputation for unforgettably energetic live shows and a penchant for all things Point Break. So how do a band soaked in 80's magic blend it all together? Let Le Galaxies bassist and synth whiz David McGloughlin explain......
Erykah: Your music has very clearly got its feet set in electronica but how would you distinguish your sound from other electro that is around?
Dave: There's a lot of electronic acts out here at the moment that are very much laptop based, and much as we use them on stage ourselves, we approach our music based around four guys on stage playing instruments and putting on a performance. We jump, we sweat, we fall over. No heads-buried-in-a-bank-of-knobs-in-the-glow-of-a-laptop-screen for us! Also, we play guitars too.
That's very true, but do you think it would be possible for you to create your style of music without the influence of electronic pioneers of the 70’s and 80’s like, for example, Kraftwerk and Gary Numan?
Let's face it, there's very few true originals out there, and even those that are truly groundbreaking, if they're honest, will acknowledge the artists that influenced / paved the way for them. We've a large raft of influences and not just limited to the synth genre. For example, the main synth chords / rhythm in our song Love System was inspired by The Doobie Brothers / Michael McDonald's amazing pulsating Fender Rhodes style. We love pulling in different themes and ideas into our music. I think we'd get bored if we felt restricted purely to a lexicon of synth references.
Speaking of synths, what would you imagine this world would be like without keyboards and synthesizers?
The first thing that jumped into my head was the "Worker and Parasite" cartoon from The Simpsons, but I'm sure Le Galaxie would still be there banging rocks together, four beats to the bar, waiting for a giant synth to materialize in the sand like the black obelisk from 2001.
Ah yes indeed, you're a band of movie buffs. Would you ever consider making your own movie soundtrack à la Daft Punk? I can see you guys flawlessly scoring some 80's style montage music.
No doubt we’re very influenced by film, and yes, Paul Thomas Anderson, if you’re reading this, and you’ve had enough of Johnny Greenwood, we’re waiting on your call!
Le Galaxie is undoubtedly most famous for incredible live shows. Are there any plans to record a live album to capture that fierce onstage energy instead of the polished studio sound?
No plans at the moment and it's something we'd approach with extreme caution. The atmosphere of a live show is something that is really hard to capture without it being lost in translation. Daft Punk initially resisted putting out a live tour video because they felt that, well, you just had to be there, and that the atmosphere couldn’t be truly captured on film. Someday, and but not just now. That said we’re currently looking at ways that we can capture some of the raw live energy that we feel onstage into our next record.
Your stage set-up is a big hint that you are bunch of audio-visual junkies, where do you get your ideas from?
By watching lots and lots of movies and television. At Le Galaxie recording / rehearsal sessions there will usually be a laptop visible somewhere in the background beaming out pure Vitamin M(ovie). A few of us are also image blog trawlers, constantly looking out for striking visual images / designs.
What prompted your generous gesture of gifting your first album Laserdisc Nights 2 as a free download?
The album had been out for almost a year and had opened a lot of doors for us. At the time we had the Fade 2 Forever EP just about to come out and we saw it as a way of drawing a line under the album release and clearing the decks for something new. Also we were feeling generous after having had such a good year!
It must have been a really good year then! You mentioned your EP Fade2Forever there which I have to say is ridiculously catchy stuff, but how is writing your second album going for you so far? Will there be any surprises for fans on it?
So far it's been going really well. It's still in the very early stages but we took about 6 weeks off from live shows to concentrate on writing and we've got five new tracks on the go at the moment. We plan to have at least two ready to play live for the shows at Christmas. We've a lot more writing time planned but we're probably not going to take a block of writing time off like that again. It was very productive, but we all felt the slump of being away from the live shows. We'll certainly keep doing some live shows during the writing of the new album to keep things vital and stay in touch.
Good to hear! What’s the plan from this point? When do you hope for the new album to be out?
We’ve got a number of gigs over Christmas and the new year, and the concentration will be to do a lot more writing and more gigs abroad. We’ve already played in the UK, Germany, France, and Sweden, but we really want to make a push next year, and have already got plans afoot. The new album will be out 'when it’s ready!', most likely later in 2013.
Its all going fantastically well for Le Galaxie, do you think there’s a bright future for Irish Electronic music generally?
We’re constantly surprised at the number of electronic acts in Ireland that can compete with anyone worldwide for quality, from the 17-year-olds doing remixes for international acts, to the likes of Ships, Toby Kaar, Adult Rock… so many great acts happening right now. There’s probably one on somewhere tonight.... Go!