This June we’ve got the mighty Baba Ali joining us upstairs. With their new record ‘Laugh Like A Bomb’ fresh out, it’s only right we sat down and had a natter with the duo ahead of the show…
Hey guys, welcome to The Bodega! How are you feeling ahead of the shows here and in London?
Baba: We’re feeling good. The new record is out, and the responses have all been super positive. Now we’re just constantly on the move, playing shows around the UK and a few in Europe. It’s always good to feel busy, no matter how exhausting it can get sometimes.
You’ve got an album out titled ‘Laugh Like A Bomb’, is this been something that’s been simmering for a long time and where did that title stem from, it’s got a lot of punch!
Baba: Yeah, the title came quite early on before we really started getting into writing the record. Originally I found the phrase in an old art publication called ‘BLAST’. The first edition, where the phrase comes from, is actually an art manifesto that was in a lot of ways trying to destroy the past traditions in art and create something new, which to me felt quite punk.
This time round you’ve taken production duty into your own hands, do you feel that having that extra slice of creative freedom has allowed you to have more input over the crafting of the overall sound?
Nik: Yes, most definitely. I think this was the right moment for us to take all that we learned from our past experiences working with the likes of Al Doyle, Jamie Hince, Alex Epton.
Taking full responsibility makes it easy to create a definitive sound and stick to it, because ultimately it’s just us being ourselves without any filter. Our only real guiding principle was that we wanted the record to feel as close to what we are as a live act.
What was the writing process like for this cut? Do you go into writing your electro-punk style in a similar way each time or does it tend to vary from track to track?
Nik: It was a very condensed time frame, which was something deliberate from us, because so many of our favorite records were made in that same way–They end up sounding immediate and fierce – and they leave little room for doubt. The first idea is a lot of times the best idea. We like to rely on instinct as overthinking just sometimes gets in the way. We tried our best to keep that approach consistent with how we worked on every track.
Have you had a chance to test some of the newer tunes live and if so how has the reaction been?
Baba: Yeah we’ve at this point incorporated a good amount of the newer songs into our live shows, and all have gone down really well. ‘Burn Me Out’ and ‘Laugh Like A Bomb’ get people moving, and are fun to perform. While ‘Anesthesia, Beverly Hill’ is always a sexy and playful moment with the audience. Our aim is to be able to play the whole album in its entirety this year.
Baba Ali play The Bodega on the 8th June, tickets on sale now.
Interview by Fin Heighton-Jupp.