Pop Levi

He released his debut album ‘The Return To Form Black Magick Party’ through Counter Records back in February this year. DIY decided to investigate.

Pop Levi is the fantastically-named musician who, before releasing his own solo stuff, was with Super Numeri and more famously, Ladytron. He released his debut album ‘The Return To Form Black Magick Party’ through Counter Records back in February this year. DIY decided to investigate.

You’re currently touring - how is it going?
Endlessly. I’m touring with my band ‘Woman’ for a month in Europe, then a month in America, then to Australia and New Zealand, then the summer European Festivals. I’m spending all of the travelling time writing for my next album, to be called ‘Never Never Love’, and my book, to be called ‘Novella’ - both to be released in 2008. A different country every day can give you a lot to write about.

Lots of people seem to like your album - but what’s the weirdest thing anyone’s said about it?
An American man from Michigan approached me after a show and told me that he hadn’t been able to cry for thirteen years - until he heard ‘From The Day That You Were Born’ - I’m into the idea that music makes people cry - I always cry when I hear The Fuzz’s ‘I Love You For All Seasons’.

Is it odd being back in the UK? What clichés do you find yourself thinking about the country when you return?
I’m not in the UK right now. I’m in Basel, Switzerland, for a show and a meeting with a Swiss time keeper who claims he has some tricks to show me. I’ll be in England next week, though. Every time I go back it feels more and more foreign, although I also understand it a little more, too. I’m very glad that I left England - I think everyone should leave the place where they are from. The only cliché that has held its ground is the below-par weather one can expect from the UK. Other than that, everything changes constantly.

Do you think your record would have been markedly different had you been living in Britain?

I made my new album on my laptop whilst I was in England, China, France, Greece, LA, New York - lots of places, and I think that it retains that ‘travelled’ sound. Had I just made a record in one studio in England then I’m sure it would have sounded different. I’m into recording movements, thoughts, travels, musical diaries, musical photography.

The comparisons have also come in thick and fast: Bolan, Byrds, Carpenters… Are you actually a time-traveller from the 1970s?
No, I’m a time-traveller from the future. I love that people can readily pick up on the references used in my new record, but the idea is to create a post-modern fusion of what makes up the best parts of the history of rock’n’roll. Once the age of the computer becomes passé, then only pure celebration for celebration’s sake is left.

What would you have called yourself if your middle name had been something more common and less cool?
Mozambique Courier.

You’re often referred to as ‘ex-Ladytron bassist’ Pop Levi. Is there something you’d rather replace that prefix with?
‘Professional arse-tit’ Pop Levi.

Apart from Coachella, what festival plans do you have this year?
Glastonbury, Eurockeennes, Les Extra Sonores, Furia Festival, Roskilde Festival, Le Rock Dans Tous Ses Etats, T In The Park, I think. Looks like I’m touring for the next couple of years!

Finally, what would make you deem 2007 a success?
If I make it through alive.