Q & A WITH ALEX NOVAK FROM VENUS FLY TRAP





TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR ALBUM The new release will be out in May, VENUS FLY TRAP/ALEX NOVAK-MERCURIAL (BEST OF)CD/DL on GLASS RECORDS MODERN, it's a round-up of VENUS FLY TRAP and my other projects notably ISAWS, RELIGIOUS OVERDOSE, TEMPEST, ATTRITION etc... We had dates lined up from may onwards but obviously because of the situation we are re-scheduling for September(hope its normal by then)good luck everyone... HOW DID YOU GO ABOUT THE SONGWRITING PROCESS? When we were writing ICON, myself and ANDY DENTON (guitar/programming) would start with a Riff/idea, just guitar and vocal. The riff would suggest a lyric and a bit of jamming would be an embryonic version of a song, not all these ideas would come to anything, but were kept for possible use in the future. ANDY would take these ideas away and come up with a basic backing track to then add more lyrics to and work out a structure, a lot of going back and forwards from rehearsal to studio, we would end up with a song structure we were happy with. This is just the start of the process for recording as a track gets mixed many times before it gets to the tweaking phase where we brought in MARTIN BOWES(ATTRITION) to do the final mixes and add the fairy dust. With electronics it is a blessing/curse as you can use any sound you wish, which can make you faff around playing with different sounds, discipline is needed to get to the final mix done otherwise you can tamper with it forever. WHAT INSPIRED THE ALBUM? The most recent studio album was ICON, it drew a lot on the WARHOL quote "in the future everyone will be famous for fifteen minutes”, the idea of famous for being famous, idols, screen goddesses, the new religion. Did we create God/gods with our fertile imaginations as a way to describe the world around us, making sense of natural events, sun, moon etc...Science fiction in the widest sense, Tarantino movies, would like to have a track on one of his movie soundtracks... WHATS YOUR FAVOURITE TRACK? With an album, you will have more immediate tracks, but we construct an album to work as one piece, moving from one mood to another. Obviously tracks are picked to promote the album, VITESSE for ICON was chosen, but it is out of context and makes more sense fitting in with other tracks. WHO ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES? Art/music is not made in a vacuum, we are all influenced by others, the trick is to take these elements and arrange them into something original, never wanted to sound exactly like another artist, always striving to do something unique. WHAT RECORD CHANGED YOUR LIFE? I guess it would have to be the “PUNK EXPLOSION” with first albums by bands like the CLASH/SEX PISTOLS/JAM/STRANGLERS/DAMNED etc...they provided the impetus to go out and form my first band the ISAWS. WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING IF YOU DIDNT MAKE MUSIC? When the above was happening I was studying graphic design at the local art school, so I guess a career in the arts/graphics would seem the obvious choice. WHO WOULD YOU LIKE TO RECORD ONE OF YOUR SONGS AND WHICH ONE? I would be intrigued to see what anyone could do with our songs, but I guess someone with a distinct sound or a unique style may be a jazz/dub version...FRANK SINATRA/GRACE JONES/NICK CAVE/METALLICA/CARPENTERS, love to hear any of those do a version. HOW DID YOU FORM THE BAND? I just finished being in ATTRITION who was based in London at the time, I had done an album “SMILING AT THE HYPOGONDER CLUB” and toured Holland (my first trip abroad with a band). Decided to move back to my native Northampton(famous for BAUHAUS/ALAN MOORE) hooked up with my brother JOHN NOVAK(ISAWS/WHERES LISSE)and TONY BOOKER an x-art school student. This was my own project, my idea was to get back to basics garage/rock n roll mixed with thumping drum machine beat, with dark vox and gothy atmospherics. For any new band you want to get out and play asap, but also recorded demo tracks early on the plan was to get a record deal, things happened very quickly, we had a release out within a year of forming. WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO ANYONE STARTING OUT? Get out and play, build up contacts, manage yourselves, become your own marketing/publicity machine-DIY, sort out your own t-shirts/merchandise etc, find a good name and strong images, perseverance gets you places. Forget about being a star, you can always make a living from music if you are realistic/practical, build a fan base that will stay with you for the long term, be yourselves, treat people with the respect they will remember you, enjoy the experience... WHAT IS NEXT? Plugging VENUS FLY TRAP/ALEX NOVAK-MERCURIAL(BEST OF) CD/DL(GLASS RECORDS MODERN)..getting out playing when things get back to normal...re-issuing some of our albums later in the year...good luck everyone..see you on the other side...

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