Interview – The Asps

We had the Asps in the studio at Jewel and Esk a wee while ago and thisisfeast managed to catch up with Paul to check what they have been up to since we last hooked up.

thisisfeast: For those who don’t know, who are you guys?

Paul: Well we are the Asps, and I am the singer – my name’s Paul Dourley. I also play rhythm guitar, the lead guitarist is Chris Simpson, and we have a synth player Michael Barry, the drummer is Lewis Hutchison, the saxophone player is Graeme Renwick and the bass player is Craig Renwick, both brothers.

thisisfeast: Why did you call yourselves the Asps?

Paul: We got the name from the song “Man on the moon” by REM. One of the lyrics is – Egypt is troubled but the horrible asps. It’s always a lyric I enjoyed singing and the word itself is phonologically pleasing.

thisisfeast: I like the use of phonologically, I might have to look that up later. What have you been up to since we last saw you a few months ago?

Paul: We have been working away on stage set-ups and working on our new tracks, this month we are quite busy. We are playing BT London Live in Hyde Park, we are expecting a quite a busy crowd and quite a lot of exposure. We are also playing at Victoria Park for an hour on the same day, so we are very excited about that.

thisisfeast: How did you get the gigs in London?

Paul: We got it through Live Nation which is part of a thing called Live Connection, who we got in touch with last year. They are kind of reaching out to unsigned bands. You submit your music and they troll through the music and they pick you to become part of different events. Live Nations have been dealing with high end bands for a long time and I think that they want to reach out and offer unsigned bands a bit of an opportunity as well.

thisisfeast: I want to talk about your songs a little bit. Who writes your tunes and what does it involve?

Paul: Usually the main substance of the songs, well certainly with Microchip and Learn to Fly, is written by me and Michael Barry on keyboards.  He usually comes up with some music and I come up with the lyrics and melody, and then the rest of the band add their magical icing to it.

thisisfeast: I been listening to the mix of Microchip over the last couple of days and its sounding great. I was just wondering what the song about?

Paul: It’s a love song to the microchip. Lots of things would not be possible without the invention of the microchip. One of the main lyrics is ‘Computer subordinate we need Microchips invented’.  It’s harking back to a time when computers where pretty rubbish, you know all they did was calculate things and how frustrating they used to be, although they obviously still are. It’s really a love song to technology. (Paul texted me a later “its really a love song for robots”)

thisisfeast: What are you up to in the future?

Paul: Well, we recently signed a publishing deal with Sony and we are in the middle of re-negotiating, because they’re quite interested as we are making an album with Ron Nevison next year in San Fransisco and they kind of picked up on that. (Ron Nevison has worked with The Who, Led Zepplin, Bad Company, Kiss amongst others)

thisisfeast: How did the recording with Ron Nevison come about?

Paul: It was through reverbnation – we submitted our music to a competition. They got in touch with us about a month later and out of 9500 entries they chose ours, which was crazy.

Microchip – The Asps
Engineered by Gavin Whyte & Hubert Aniolek
Mixed by Stuart MacLaughlan

Tags: , , , , , , ,