Chimpomatic: 'Post-War' seems like it is going to be a big record for you. How would you say it is different from 'Transistor Radio'?
M. Ward: 'Transistor Radio' looked backwards – the idea was for the new record to look forward.
Chimpomatic: Your previous albums have been much more low-key. How has working with an expanded band affected your music?
M. Ward: I feel that using the same performers throughout the whole record gave the new record a more unified feel – the music tends to go in all kinds of different directions so its good to have an anchor.
Chimpomatic: You have just signed with 4AD here in the UK. What was your thinking behind this and what do you hope they can do for you? Why switch from Matador to 4AD - when both are under the Beggars umbrella?
M. Ward: I love Matador Records but I wanted a label that was based in the UK instead of New York – my position is a little unusual as I am devoted to a different label in the USA (Merge).
Chimpomatic: I have always been taken with your guitar playing, but seeing you recently at Bush Hall it was your piano playing that surprised me - it seemed very instinctive and primal. Where does that come from and who has influenced you with that?
M. Ward: My favorite piano players are Randy Newman, Howe Gelb and Fats Domino.
Chimpomatic: You commented that the crowd were quiet that night - you could indeed hear a pin drop when you played your first song but to me this was a sense of respect and awe. Is your relationship with your audience an easy one?
M. Ward: I guess so – I don’t really think about it too much…There is really nothing too difficult about any aspect of my job.
Chimpomatic: You have had 5 albums now and it seems like people are really sitting up and taking more notice. You must have met a lot of people on the road over the years, and seem to thrive on collaboration - whether it’s touring with Bright Eyes & Jim James, producing for other people or guesting on albums.
M. Ward: I learned how to play guitar by learning other peoples songs, mainly The Beatles - nothing much has changed – still learning how to write and play by learning other people songs…
Chimpomatic: Are you a fan of much other British music?
M. Ward: I like Billy Bragg.
Chimpomatic: What’s next for M. Ward?
M. Ward: Touring USA, Europe and Australia
Chimpomatic: Why are all your songs so short?
M. Ward: I'm not sure.
15th Sep 2006 - Tumblr
Perhaps this will come as a surprise to absolutely no-one, but we are fast approaching the death-throes of record retailing in the UK. Of course, we've all been predicting it for years - how online purchasing would lead to the demise of retail - but rather like the possibility of a death in the family we've tended to put it out of our thoughts until it actually happens. Sadly it's about ... read article
Last year saw many bands introduce themselves with impressive debuts, but few were as infectious and exciting as Workout Holiday, the first LP by Austin's White Denim. It was a total shambles of a record darting from one idea to the next and threatened to collapse under it's own weight all the time, but it was electrifying. Chimpomatic managed to have a quick word with bassist Steve Tere... read article
I'd have to say that No Age's LP Nouns has really been the stand out record of this year for me and in more ways than one. Its infectious energy has made it hard to resist but has also encouraged me to delve deeper into the context in which it was created and as a result a whole new scene has opened up to me and introduced me to a wealth of new talent. It's a scene loosely centered aroun... read article
10th Dec 2008 - Add Comment
When Nirvana went global and 'Grunge' became a household word, Jonathan Poneman and Bruce Pavitt's fledgling record label hit the big time. Geffen Records bought out their contract with Nirvana in a tidy deal that gave the Seattle label percentage points on future Nirvana releases - as well as reviving sales of Bleach to make it the label's biggest seller to this day. With interest in S... read article
26th Aug 2008 - Add Comment
With fifth studio album Evil Urges arriving in stores this week, Louisville rockers My Morning Jacket were in town to promote the album, record a Black Cab Session and put on an acoustic show at St. James Church. It's no secret that Chimpomatic are big fans of the band, so we had plenty of questions about British Bobbies, Butch and Sundance, Nashville and Kentucky. read article
7th Jun 2008 - Add Comment
I've been a Silver Jews fan long enough to have developed my own set of ill-informed stereotypes about it’s creator David Berman. I’m sure they dovetail perfectly with everyone else’s opinions of the man and involve a hermetic and reclusive artist, deeply troubled by personal struggles of the past and a guy so dedicated to his craft that the tedium of touring and interv... read article
With a new album Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga just released, Chimpomatic favourites Spoon continue to evolve. BC caught up with drummer and producer Jim Eno to talk about recording the new album, out of date Wikipedia entries and his lack of tight jeans. read article
15th Aug 2007 - Add Comment
With a second album, The Beatific Visions, in stores on Monday, Brighton's favourite country-punkers Brakes are back with a vengence, including a recent show at Kilburn's The Luminaire. Chimpomatic caught up with front man Eamon Hamilton to talk about recording in Nashville, South By South West and David Niven... amongst other things. read article
3rd Nov 2006 - Add Comment
Following the release of his new album Post-War and a short UK tour, Chimpomatic caught up with M.Ward for a very brief Q&A. read article
15th Sep 2006 - Add Comment
After storming this year's SXSW festival, and signing to major label XL, Minneapolis' Tapes 'n Tapes' debut album The Loon has finally been released in the UK. As the band prepare for another UK tour, Chimpomatic talked to Matt Kretzmann about their new-found success - as well as Minneapolis's most famous miniature rock-star. read article
3rd Aug 2006 - Add Comment
Following a UK tour in support of Editors and a headline gig at Koko in May, Chimpomatic's BC caught up with Matt Berninger of The National to talk about Alligator, Shakespeare and more. read article
27th Jun 2006 - Add Comment
Back in the early days of Chimpomatic, we had big ambitions for the site and got off to a great start by securing this 2001 interview with the bass king, Mike Watt. It's taken 3 1/2 years to get the interview together and online, but surprisingly little has changed. Bush has just been voted in (again) and Watt has just released his long planned third album - "The Secondman's Middle ... read article
1st Jun 2001 - Add Comment