Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Something New: Ladytron.

Photo by Alex Wolkowicz

I know Ladytron isn't new. I'm sure I've, in a rare moment, danced to them at DSC in the past. That's what kind of effect the music has on me. I want to dance. Even now, in a sober moment, I'm tempted to take the booty to the mirror and replace all my bulbs with black lights and just dance.

I bring this up because I have a special treat. Yay! A friend of a friend, Teresa Alvarez, was fortunate enough to interview Ladytron before their show in Atlanta a couple weeks ago (2.17.07 @ CenterStage), and she has asked me to share it with you guys, so I am! If you haven't caught on yet, Ladytron is on the verge of exploding like a Hawaiian volcano as they tour around with Nine Inch Nails. Hand selected. I think ole Trent likes to do that, since that's how the Dresden Dolls got their break...

Anyways, here is the interview and a song that I am lovin' right now since I feel like screaming it at someone.

Ladytron - "Destroy Everything You Touch"

Ladytron Interview 2-17-07

The 'Witching Hour' with Ladytron continues
British band talks of opening for Nine Inch Nails, their next album and David Lynch

By Teresa A.

It's not just another show in another city for the Liverpool-based band, Ladytron- not The Beatles. Made up of two female vocalists/musicians and two male musicians, Ladytron performed an exclusive off tour show Feb. 17 at Center Stage in Atlanta, Ga. before their European tour with the ground-breaking band Nine Inch Nails.

"It's always nice to come out on one off shows because we're all refreshed," said Reuben Wu, one of the two males, with his charming Liverpudlian accent. "We enjoy it quite a lot when we're doing one off shows in interesting places."

Going on eight years together, Helen Marnie, Daniel Hunt, Mira Aroyo and Wu recently finished their international tour for their third album, Witching Hour. Just finishing their sound check and getting a preview for what will be heard later, Wu, wearing comfy jeans and shirt layers, suggested we sit in the last lit row from the top. And there we were- sitting side by side with me in the middle and Aroyo, complete with silver rings to compliment her striking dark features, commenting we're like "The Muppets."

"It just came out of the blue," said Wu explaining how NIN frontman Trent Reznor came about hand-picking Ladytron to be his support starting Feb. 25 in England to April 10 in Finland.

"Our progress has been very gradual from the start, so it just seems like a gradual step," said Bulgarian-native Aroyo. "We haven't really supported anyone big our whole careers. So I think it's about time."

"We don't want to remain underground," said Wu. "It's cool, y'know! It's also good to introduce more people."

"We just want a bigger underground," said Aroyo.

On Ladytron's sound, they're inspired by anything and everything and defined as pop/electronic/electronica. Their first album, 604, featured hits such as "He Took Her To A Movie" and "Playgirl." Their second album, Light & Magic, had the same energy as 604, but added a more relaxed undertone in the songs "Seventeen," "Blue Jeans," and "Evil." By the time Witching Hour came out in 2005, they developed a transcendental quality. Songs such as "Soft Power," "WhiteLightGenerator" and "All The Way…" give this image of a jellyfish fluidly floating in the sea. Although their very chill personality is accentuated in Witching Hour, "High Rise," "Destroy Everything You Touch" and "Weekend" balance the serenity with the up-tempo energy as featured in the other two records. Last spring, Extended Play EP featured remixes of various Witching Hour tracks as well as bonus tracks.

The effortless, bittersweet vocals are what put the 'lady' in Ladytron. Marnie brings this sweet, innocent feeling to the lyrics making them delicate to listen to. Contrasting to this sweetness is Aroyo giving strong, abrasive vocals reminiscent of listening to a darker Nico. This is especially highlighted in songs like "Fighting In Built Up Areas" (from Witching Hour), "True Mathematics" (from Light & Magic) and "Discotraxx" (from 604) where she is speaking Bulgarian.

"People usually say… ice cold vocals, no emotion," said Aroyo. "And that's really not true because there's a lot of emotion. But emotion is not usually [the same as listening] to a 60s soul song."

Throughout their career, Ladytron contributed their work to various video games, TV shows such as Sex in the City and The L Word and various commercials. Both Wu and Aroyo agree to want to work on more movies.

"It'd be nice to actually work on a soundtrack," says Aroyo hopefully. "I'm waiting for David Lynch! We're waiting for [Angelo Badalamenti, a Lynch film composer] to retire."

Part of Ladytron's subtle charm is seeing the names of the four synthesizers, Babylon, Cleopatra, Gloria and Ulysses, displayed on the back facing the audience. Seeing the nameless MS-2000s, their new synthesizers, they're easier to replace opposed to using older models in the past. As for the names and the possible meanings behind them, the only meaning that exists is it makes the sound check easier.

Like many bands, having a uniform is typical. As time went on, their individuality in style progressed leaving the uniform idea behind and primarily wearing black.

"We ditched those uniforms," says Wu. "[We] sold them on eBay."

"We haven't yet," adds Aroyo mischievously. "We're waiting for the price [to go] up from the Nine Inch Nails tour, maybe?"

As for what lies ahead after NIN, Ladytron is in the process of planning their next record and hope to start recording in June.

"We're not entirely sure what we're gonna do," explains Wu. "We reckon we've got enough for two albums definitely."

Until that time comes, Ladytron will tour with NIN, work progressively on their fourth album, possibly come back to America later this year to perform and continue growing to new and greater heights. To learn more about Ladytron, go to their official site or visit their MySpace page.
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