Interview Two Wounded Birds: ‘Pop Is Not A Dirty Word’

After unleashing a slew of well-received singles and EPs, we’re finally getting a true taste of Two Wounded Birds…

After unleashing a slew of well-received singles and EPs since their formation in 2010, we’re finally getting a true taste of Two Wounded Birds in the form of their self-titled album, which drops this June.

“People may already have an idea of what they think it’s going to sound like but I think they’re going to be surprised,” opens up frontman Johnny Danger. “It’s a lot broader than people will anticipate.”

We sit with the four-piece – all of whom are leather clad in some way, shape, or form and ooze that undeniably coveted sense of cool – and speak of their debut in the corner of a Shoreditch bar.

“The album’s split into two sides” continues Danger, the obvious ringleader of the operation. “The first half is very Phil Spector, whilst the second half is more things like Mazzy Star and The Jesus & Mary Chain.

“It’s been recorded over the last year at different times in a studio in Rochester. I think it’s good to give each track its own time. If you just take it in a block every day, and you’re attacking it every day, it all kind of messes into one. I think it’s nice to give each song a little bit of breathing space.”

“There’s a lot of different moods on the album,” adds in Joe Stevens, before Ally Blackgrove back hims up: “That’s what’s good about recording it over different periods of time.”

“We don’t take too long when recording either: we don’t do fifty takes,” explains Danger. “We like to get the first basic takes and keep it fresh. It’s just better when it’s the first few takes because that’s when everyone’s excited about playing.”

With inspirations such as these, surely there must be some sort of love affair with the art of sixties pop going on? “I think it’s one of, if not the strongest decade,’ explains Danger. ‘I don’t wanna pigeonhole ourselves and say, ‘Oh, we just like things from the sixties’, but… Some of those things just really hit home.”

As for pop itself though, it’s a genre that can come with some troublesome generalisations. “It’s not a dirty word,” states Danger simply. “I think those people are reading too much into it. If a song’s good, who gives a s**t?”

“With pop, there’s so many different connotations for it,” offers Stevens. “It depends which way you’re looking at it. If you’re talking about… Cher Lloyd or something, you’re saying a totally different word to when you describe us. It just depends on how you use it, I think. For us, it’s not a dirty word. I know dirtier words…”

And for their debut album, the band have teamed up with Jacob Graham of The Drums, who will be releasing the record through his label Holiday Recording Friends. “He loves music more than anyone else that we had spoken to about putting out an album,” Ally Blackgrove tells us, before Joe Stevens summarises perfectly: “You want to be with people that you have things in common with. When we’ve released stuff with other labels, we realised that we had nothing in common with the people releasing it. Now, with Holiday, it’s about being with people that share your vision and share your point of view.”

Two Wounded Birds’ self-titled debut album will be released on 4th June via Holiday Recording Friends.

Taken from the June 2012 issue of DIY, available now. For more details click here.

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