Interview: Bed Rugs
Published on May 17th, 2013 | Jonny Abrams
Belgium band Bed Rugs blew Rocksucker away with the fuzzy psych-pop brilliance of their brand new Rapids EP, released this week on Cornershop’s astoundingly fruitful Ample Play label, and we’re delighted to report that they’ll be performing in London at The MacBeth in Hoxton on June 14th and The Dalston Victoria on July 19th.
We fired some questions over to front man Yannick Aerts in order to find out more…
Rapids has been listed as an album but, at six tracks, it’s arguably more of an EP. Which do you see it as? Can you see these tracks being used on a second full-length Bed Rugs album, or do you have other songs in mind for that?
Well, it is an EP of course, but more than just a collection of songs I guess. To us these songs belong together as a whole. They definitely will not return on the next album! It’s gonna be quite different again because we always strive for renewal..
Why did you decide to record in a church? Was it your idea to do that, or does the church regularly get used for recording music?
That was Mr Hendrix’s idea, our producer. He’s in a very good band called FENCE. He had played there before and felt it had a lot of potential with all the different rooms and natural reverb. The church has been desanctified and is used now by meditating hippies mostly (really!) or for parties. We also did our release show there, it’s just around the corner of where I live, here in Antwerp.
Are you fans of The Olivia Tremor Control and/or the Elephant 6 collective? You seem to attract mentions of them, and you definitely remind me of them. (That’s a good thing, by the way!)
We absolutely adore OTC! To us they’re like the modern-day Beatles. We were lucky enough to see them live last year at the Primavera festival in Barcelona and they absolutely blew our minds! A couple of months later Bill Doss passed away and it broke our hearts…
How did you get Paul Butler to mix the record? Are you fans of his band The Bees? (Butler is quoted as saying of Bed Rugs: “This band are on point; the concept of psychedelia rubbing together with glorious song craft was very appealing for us to work on.”)
The Bees are also an absolute Bed Rugs favourite! So you can imagine we were over the moon when they agreed to work with us. They’re a brilliant live band. I got to know Aaron after a show in Brussels. They just know how to make everything sound great, they really know their stuff. Paul’s work on the Devendra Banhart album, we just love that!
How did you come to the attention of Ample Play? What are they like to work with?
We knew Ample Play as a cool label that had bands like The Paperhead and The Sufis, so we thought they might like our stuff too, which they did immediately. That was a big confidence boost for us. Marie at Ample Play is constantly helping us out and promoting us. We owe them a lot!
Will you be playing at any festivals this summer?
We’re gonna play some of the cooler festivals here in Belgium like Openluchttheater and Deep In The Woods, maybe Pukkelpop again. But the main goal this summer is branching out, playing in the UK and France, hopefully Spain too and Germany.
Has there been any other music from this year that you’ve particularly enjoyed, or is there anything you’re particularly looking forward to?
Last couple of months I’ve been listening to new albums by Unknown Mortal Orchestra, The Go, Devendra Banhart, The Flaming Lips, Julian Lynch, Thee Oh Sees and Deerhunter, all on vinyl of course!
If you had to spend the rest of your life with the entire works of just five different musical artists, whose would you choose?
Hope this never happens to me! I’m not sure whether I could do without The Beatles, but I’ve heard their music so many times it’s like ingrained I suppose. In that case The Olivia Tremor Control would be the perfect replacement, so I still have four left… The Flaming Lips because they always keep evolving. White Denim because they’re just so awesome. Ween because of the humour. And finally Chet Baker because it’s Chet Baker.
Bed Rugs, thank you.
Rapids is out now on Ample Play.
The band will be performing in London at The MacBeth in Hoxton on June 14th and The Dalston Victoria on July 19th.
For more information, please visit the official Bed Rugs website.