Interview with Rou Reynolds of ENTER SHIKARI January 12, 2012

January 22, 2012 by: admin

January 12, 2012


Hopeless Records

Rou Reynolds (Vocals, Electronics)

St. Albans, UK

By: Shauna O’Donnell

Hello Rou, thank you for answering some questions. On January 17th you will be releasing your third album titled A Flash Flood of Colour through Hopeless Records. I listened to the record and it is incredible. I too believe that it is the first great album of 2012. The album was written as an urgent state of the world address. What are some of the issues that you address on this album?

Well the whole album whizzes through addressing many of the worlds problems on a global scale, but what we’re really trying to do is encourage perspective in how people look about the world. There’s so many institutions we just take as normality and apathetically label as ‘just the way things are’, but if you really look deep we can see that most of our problems today are symptoms of a failing capitalist system and we need to rethink and restructure our world to something much more sustainable.

The music you create is a blend of hardcore and electronic music. There is so much going on in each song, which is what makes it so incredible. Do each of you bring in a different influence musically and then it gets blended together?

We were lucky enough to all grow up within some really healthy live music scenes, but also have diverse influences from parents and differing friendship groups too. I for instance was brought up on Motown and Northern Soul by my dad who was a DJ. I got into the local hardcore punk scene early on too, but also was introduced to Prodigy and the electronic music scene by a musically enthusiastic uncle too. The others had similar influences flying in at them from all angles, but generally we don’t really separately bring different styles to the band as individuals, we’re very quick to introduce each other to any music that we feel is special so we all end up enjoying and being influenced by a plethora of genres.

Do you think that is what makes you so diverse and helps you stand out from other bands?

I suppose so! We’re just lucky enough to have grown up without identifying ourselves by music, the limitations of being solely a ‘punk’ or ‘metalhead’ or ‘raver’ for instance were never something that we really understood. We revel in the beauty of music of all descriptions.

Do all of you write the music together or are each of you assigned to parts?

I usually bring a rough structure of a song to the guys and we then finish it together. There’s no real set way of what we start off with or anything, it’s all quite free and organic.

One of my favorite songs on the record is “Hello Tyrannosaurus, Meet Tyrannicide.” The word Tyrannicide means the killer of a tyrant and we all know what a Tyrannosaurus is. What message are you trying to convey and what inspired the song?

It’s challenging the idea of the artificial hierarchies, whether it be bosses at work, presidents of nations or king of countries. The line ‘nature is the only dictator that I respect’ kind of sums up the song really. We are one species and we are equal and we need to grow out of this structure of obey some ‘all knowing’ leader that has come from the archaic thinking of religion and gods. Once we banish these synthetic power positions we can start thinking scientifically about everything which is the only way we’ll progress as a species.

How do you want this album to make people feel?

Well the phrase ‘A Flash Flood Of Colour’ is supposed to describe the album musically and lyrically, so it’s supposed to be an injection of positivity, emotion and ideas and will hopefully give people a sense of empowerment.

I watched to promo video for “Arguing with Thermometers.” How did you like playing a newscaster? It isn’t a far cry from what you do on stage. In both instances you are making people become aware of what is going on in the world.

It was such good fun! I think Phillis McCleavland will be joining us on tour if we can book him, he’s a very busy man you see, but hopefully he’ll take some time out of his schedule to report on our band!

Where did you film the video?

In the Bronx, New York! It was amazing to spend a day in NYC not playing a show, not that we got to see too much, but it was certainly cool doing a video with lots of outside shots in such an awesome city!

Do you guys come up with the concepts for your videos?

Sometimes yes, but this was all put forward by our director (for this video) Raul Gonzo. He had it spot on, and after a few little chats and further planning altogether we knew we were onto a killer video!

I see you have tour dates up beginning with the Soundwave Festival. Will you be playing here in the States this year? When?

Yeah we’ll be doing a headliner in spring. Absolutely can’t wait as it’ll be our first proper full on Shikari experience show put on in the states! Dates will be announced soon!

What do you enjoy most about playing here in the states?

The enthusiasm and the energy is always at maximum. We love that! There’s always a big vibe and I’m sure with the new stuff it’s gonna be mayhem. Seeing people scream our lyrics back in our faces when we’re half way around the world is something that we will never take for granted.

What summer festivals will you be playing this year?

Haven’t announced any yet, apart from one or two in Europe and Russia, but we’re getting on the case soon and finalizing which ones we’ll be playing.

Do you find that fans of all different genres enjoy your music and shows?

Yeah I think we’re really lucky to have a real varied audience with our music. We get people of all sorts of ages and musical backgrounds. We get people saying they usually only listen to dance music, but are really into us and vice versa with rock music, so I guess that can only be a good thing, widening peoples musical horizons!

Thank you so much for the interview. Before I let you go was there anything you’d like to add or say?

Big up to everyone that has supported us! See you all on the road!

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