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New Album: Mermaidens

Last edited: 28.07.17 | Comment? | By











‘New Album’ is where a band or artist answers some questions about their latest release. Up next are Gussie, Lily & Abe from Mermaidens, whose Sophomore album ‘Perfect Body’ is released on August 4th via Flying Nun Records.

When/where was the new album recorded?
We recorded the album sporadically – over a few different sessions in the studio in the latter months of 2016. A day of tracking here, a day of guitars there. Our other recording experiences have been completely different. Usually we would set aside 2 or 3 days in the studio and smash it out. This time round, we recorded over a few different sessions. We recorded the first four tracks then had a two-month gap in between to write more material. This allowed us to see the album as a whole – that reflection informed our writing of the next four songs. We also paid a lot more attention to guitars on this album. There are layers and layers of different textures in the guitars and I think that’s what makes these songs the most dynamic we’ve recorded so far.

Who produced/engineered the album? How did the tracks come together in the studio, or at home?
James Goldsmith of Blue Barn Recording Studios did another amazing job on this record. We have a really great dynamic and he knows how to get the best out of us! The tracks were mostly written out of the studio, but James had a chance to listen to demos and give us some feedback. We recorded the drums with a live band to get a more realistic feeling, and then tracked the guitar, bass and vocals separately over the top. This gave us the opportunity to really fine tune the tones and layers of sounds we wanted to achieve.

Wellington act Mermaidens evoke the lush aesthetic of a bygone era with new track Satsuma: look closer, however, and you’ll find the domestic dream is rotten to the core
‘The Singles Life: The eerie defiance of Mermaidens’, The Wireless, Thursday 22nd June 2017.

How did the songwriting happen? Are there any overall themes within the songs/album?
This sounds cheesy but I feel this album is about growing up. About our art, minds, bodies and becoming more mature. The lyrics are really for us, as a mantra to ourselves. While writing the album we’d been thinking and talking about the sensations of pleasure and pressure. By that I mean the contrast of being in a blissful state, but with an underlying anxiety or uncertainty being present too. The sun is a big one for us in this album – that feeling of craving the sun is touched on multiple times and we didn’t realize this until once the album was finished. Our songwriting process is always collaborative – although at times when writing this album we were under quite a bit of time pressure so one person would finish a song then bring it to the band. We’re big fans of deadlines!

Were you going for a different sound/approach on this album?
We really tried to be more restrained and careful with our use of dynamics on this album. I guess that resolved itself in a quieter and more mature sound than on Undergrowth.

Was there any specific gear you used to capture that?
Bass tone had a lot of attention in the recording process. We wanted a subby sound throughout the whole record and also used chorus pedal throughout.
Snare treatment is different for every song. James gave the drums a different ‘voice’ according to what the song needed.

Is there a particular single/track that you feel captures the essence of the album?
The final track on the record ‘Fade’ is the most last minute song we’ve written and caused the most turmoil for me! I was writing it up until the night before we went into the studio. Despite this it turned out to be our favourite song on the album. It’s got these densely layered vocal harmonies, twinkly guitar lines and finishes with a jam that gets fuzzier and fuzzier. It seemed like the best way to end the album.

Mermaidens deliberately don’t make songs you can stick on at a dinner party
Loud & Quiet, July 19th

Perfect Body Pre-Orders are here

Mermaidens Perfect Body vinyl pre-orders are available now! Vinyl comes in glowing bright orange 'satsuma' colour. Order a copy from http://tinyurl.com/y85sbtth

Posted by Mermaidens on Monday, 12 June 2017

Is there a physical copy available? If not which digital platforms is it available on?
‘Perfect Body’ is coming out on vinyl through Flying Nun, and it should be available from all the good record stores in the country. You can order the record from Flyingout.co.nz. Digitally you can stream the album on Spotify and iTunes, but if you really like the music, the best way to support us (and all small bands!) is by buying it on Bandcamp.

Are you working on a video/videos for any of the songs?
Gussie, Lily, Ezra and our friend Will have made an amazing video for ‘Satsuma’, and a video for ‘Sunstone’ is in the works too!

Posted in: GeneralInterviewsNew Album

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