After a series of remixes, single releases and artful videos, London band Clock Opera finally released their debut album Ways To Forget just this month and it was worth every second of waiting. The four piece have built quite a reputation as a live band, something we can find out first hand at the Camden Crawl Dublin this weekend. State caught up singer Guy Connelly with some cheeky questions.
Following the fate The Fallout Trust then The Corrections, how difficult was it to push forward with Clock Opera and what drives you?
I am driven to make music and to play it to people. My previous bands did the same thing and that music still proudly exists. We are a different band.
As Clock Opera, you first gained online attention with an amazing remix of Marina & The Diamonds’ ‘I Am Not A Robot’, and have since then Au Revoir Simone, Blood Orange, Metronomy, Tracey Thorn & Feist. Apart from the obvious artistic value, do you find remixing useful for maintaining a presence, keeping blogs aware of you etc.?
People in the music industry seem to equate silence with failure, so I think you are right to suggest that remixing has been useful in maintaining a mutter. But we’ve made a lot of fans that way too & played with a lot of the bands I’ve remixed, so the benefits are many.
By comparison, your own band sound is pretty straight up – anthemic, heart-on-sleeve , life-affirming pop-rock – have you encountered surprise as to what you really sound like as opposed to what may have been projected by your remix work?
You make us sound like a modern-day Status Quo. I don’t consider us to be straight up pop-rock, so I refute that part of your description. I used a lot of the same techniques for our album as I do on remixes, but as we’re a band, it also sounds like a band. In my experience, people who’ve discovered us through the remixes love to discover that there is another side, and vice versa.
Though it’s from 2010, ‘Once And For All’ could have been written with The Olympics in mind, and ‘Belongings’ could be this year’s ‘Chariots of Fire’. Did someone in marketing cop this and influence the album’s release date? [This is a not a dig, in fact the opposite. Time to Forget is sure to soundtrack much of the BBC coverage]
Yes, the game is up. We are a focus-grouped, blue-sky marketing agency round table construction, timed perfectly to explode from the Olympic torch. We’ve all learned how to move in slow-mo, so that montages can be recorded in real-time. In fact all the medals have been decided already & the whole two weeks of telly has been recorded. I can tell you that after the closing ceremony, Usain Bolt gets carried away on Tower Bridge, dives into the Thames & is never seen again.
In preparation for the festival season, what have you worked hardest on for your live show?
My abs, my rear deltoids and my inner calves.
From the Camden Crawl Dublin line-up, who do you most recommend and who will you be checking out?
I haven’t seen Kwes live yet, so I very much hope that our paths cross.
Have you seen this marimba overdub of ‘A Piece of String’? If you had room on stage, would you have that guy on board?
Yes, we have, he’s great. I would have him, Toumani Diabate and Steve Martin on banjo.
Clock Opera plays the Camden Crawl Dublin on May 12th, venues to be announced on the day. Tickets are on sale now priced €40 for the weekend, €25 per day.