Anyway, I digress, fucking love them no matter what my reasoning may well be, for me 'Smash Hits' is one of the best songs I've come across this year (go on treat yourself), so having stalked David for several months now I managed to persuade him and the lovely Kate to answer some questions for me, ie they do all the hard work and I take the credit....
Would you care to introduce yourselves?
Hello. We are Kid Canaveral. We are David, Kate, Rose, Scott and sometimes
Who does the song writing in the band?
David: It started off as just me and then Kate started to come in with whole songs too. Now that we’re in the recording studio so often, we’ve all started to contribute bits and bobs sometimes. I wrote quite a few of the songs on the singles and a couple from the album in various Portakabins around the Lothians.
Kate: I’ve written at least three songs in the last few months which doesn’t sound like much but is rather prolific for me. I usually average about one every couple of years!
What artists would you say have had the biggest influence on the band?
Kate: I love 80s indie-pop – stuff like The Smiths and Kirsty MacColl. I’ve not really progressed to be honest. I work for a second hand record website so I’m kind of stuck in the past…
David: I love Kirsty, too. The Smiths, R.E.M., Pixies and The Cure is probably what I’d take from the 80s as major influences. I love a lot of indiepoppy bands from the 80s and 90s too, but I’m not going to descend into a big list. Yet. A lot of American and Scottish indie, too, (Modest Mouse, Built to Spill, Grandaddy, Nada Surf, Trash Can Sinatras, King Creosote., Belle and Sebastian, Idlewild, Mull Historical Society) and stuff with its tongue never far from its cheek..
Kate: Actually, I’ve had time to think and I do like some stuff from this century! I’m really into Grandaddy and Belle & Sebastian too, plus more alt-country-americana stuff – Ryan Adams, Neko Case, Wilco, Mountain Goats.
You are very much involved in whole Fence Collective set up, how did that come about?
Kate: We all met Johnny (Pictish Trail) at university in St Andrews and have all been good mates since. I live in Anstruther and help run the Fence shop and organising stuff for their festival (the Homegame). We’ve played the last four Homegames and it’s always amazing fun.
David: Kate and I took over the running of the Indie club night at the Union when Johnny abdicated from that post. Johnny set up a Fence stall at each of the nights during our tenure.
Your new EP ‘Left and Right’ comes out next month, which you’ve chosen to release on cassette (and download). What was the thinking behind that?
David: Well, we’ve not released anything this year, so we’ve recorded three tracks for an E.P., so people know we’re still working away. The lead track ‘Left and Right’ seemed like a good introduction to the album, and we wanted to try something a wee bit different on the b-sides, seeing as we’re still writing the last part of the album. One of them is a cover of “Long in the Tooth” by The Pictish Trail. It’s a *wee* bit different…It also gives an excuse to tour. We’re starting in Edinburgh and then we’re off down through England and Wales. Plus, we’ve already had 4 vinyl singles, so cassette was the next logical (extinct) step… It has got a wrap-around case and the idea was to produce a physical format with a nice bit of artwork (from the very talented Eve McConnachie, again) for those who still like that sort of thing, whilst providing them with a high quality digital version via an attached code.
Kate: The cassette is a bit of a gimmick I guess – it’s just for fun really and it’s nice to have a physical something to be able to sell with proper art work, downloads just aren’t the same!
You have been recording your debut album for a while now, how’s it coming along?
David: It’s not been that long! (Peenko - I do seem to remember hassling you about this back in April, and April was fecking ages ago!)We had our first session in May this year and have been back in and out since. I think it’s sounding good. It’s a bit more adventurous than the stuff we’ve released before. I mean it’s not Minimalist French House or anything, but we’ve had more time to spend on it so we’re trying some things. It’s still pop music. We’ve got a part-time fifth member in with us at the moment on keys and viola. Her name is Ali and she’ll be joining us at shows when she can.
Kate: I’m really excited about the album – I guess it has been a long time coming but we really want it to be good… it’s been nice being able to spend time tweaking stuff as previously it sometimes felt like a bit of a mad rush to get things finished.
David: Yeah, it’s definitely great now to be able to take stuff away and listen to it over the space of a couple of weeks, think: “I don’t like how we’ve done this” or “maybe if we did this like that” and change it.
Basically, when can I get my mucky paws on it?
David: It’s out in Spring, next year. But I imagine you’ll get one of the promos a wee bit before then… There’ll also be a single to promote it, released just before it. This will obviously have a couple of remixes or b-sides or something so we’re not releasing exactly the same thing that’ll be on the album. We’ve also got a Christmas/Hanukah/Kwanzaa/Mid-
Are you planning to release it on your own label (Straight to Video)? Fence? Someone else? Or D all of the above?
David: At the moment it’s going to be on Straight to Video. There’s no point waiting around for someone else to release a record for you these days. We’ve got some great people we work with, for our press and for our booking and obviously some very useful (and lovely) friends at Fence, as far as advice and support goes. Unless we get a great offer, we’re much better doing it this way.
You have had quite a high turnover of drummers in your time, ever thought about just buying a drum machine to save yourself the hassle?
David: We have about 2 or 3 between us… But a drum machine can’t carry things. Dan leaving was a huge loss as we’re very good friends, but we were never going to give up on the band. We’re all still friends of course, and to prove that’s not just a tired cliché, we’re all going to his wedding next month. Clarke left because of his caffeine addiction and is now in a Swiss Rehab clinic. Lovely chap, though. Scott our newest, and hopefully permanent, drummer is someone we’ve known for years. We’ve rescued him from Metal.
Kate: It’s a bit of a shame that we have no dramatic break up/falling out stories – witnessed an amazing band fight outside our rehearsal studio yesterday and I thought we really were missing out…. we’re obviously just not rock n roll enough.
David: I didn’t realise they were a band. It was like dialogue from an Irvine Welsh Novel, but whinier.
Favourite venue (played/would like to play)?
David: To play? The Barrowlands. Have played? Probably Carnegie Hall in Dunfermline (it’s huge and ornate) or The Caves in Edinburgh. The Cavern in Exeter also made quite an impression on me, actually, and I loved the Luminaire in London.
Kate: I would very much like to play Glastonbury… if that counts as a venue. I’m not fussy about which stage! I think I’d have to go for The Caves as well for places we’ve played, it’s got such an ace atmosphere.
Lastly, can you recommend a band(s) for me to check out?
David: Not that I mean to kiss your arse or anything, but from reading your blog, I’ve noticed that you’re going to very similar gigs to me and listening to the same sort of new stuff. I would say go and see The Kabeedies if you get the chance. They do really energetic indiepop. They are also very nice people.
Kate:I would check out Laura Gibson, she’s a folky singer/ songwriter from Portland, Oregon. The album I have of hers is a couple of years old but I love it…Hands In Pockets is the tune to check out. If you were looking for live recommendations then I guess this isn’t too helpful… she does get over here occasionally though.
If Edinburgh feels like too much a trek or just too long to wait, then you can catch them tonight (25/09/09) supporting Popup at the Captains Rest. It's David's birthday, so come along and tell him how old he looks.