Spector: Topmen

They begun the year hyped up and hungry for fame, but Spector are anything but obnoxious. Spector brought their chevy thunder down to KL last month in support of their debut Enjoy it While It Lasts, giving fans a short, but rather spectacular, performance. The band entertained JUICE during a one-on-one couch sesh with their eclectic taste in cheese — which segued gracefully from talk of homicide — and clothes, all while delivering the sort of dry wit not unheard of coming from a Brit.

So how was the flight down guys?
Fred Wonderful actually, but no complimentary drinks though so we’re holding that against the people of Kuala Lumpur.

To be honest we didn’t know who or what Spector was, but then we realised just how many fans you guys have here in Malaysia, how did you generate that kind of buzz while only releasing your debut album a month before coming here?
F Well, I didn’t know who we were last week either, until Topman put us all together and made up a few songs for us. We also sent Twitter threats threatening to kill anyone who doesn’t know who we are, and eventually everyone knows who we are… or we kill them. A lot of blood on our hands, Danny does the throttling, he wears leather gloves, sometimes garrotting with a bit of cheese wire, but we try to avoid cheese wire when possible, except when eating cheese. Gouda is my favourite, Chris is more a fan of a nuttier cheese.
Chris Wensleydale!
F A Wensleydale you know, or your blues, your socks.
C Your Edams.
F Your French, your Italian.
C Your Bries.
F Parmesano, actually Taleggio is a cheese that I’ve recently been enjoying, salty and moist.

Homicide to cheese talk… interesting segue. So we all love cheese?
F I don’t love cheese, I like it, I put up with it.
C You like milk more.
F Be careful if you’re pregnant, there’s certain cheeses you simply can’t have,
C Like what?
F Cannenburgh. I don’t know, runny eggs also is something you can’t have, it’s something to do with what the baby can or cannot digest, so that’s something to look out for when pregnant.

Fred the maternity expert. Enjoy It While It Lasts is your debut album, what was the story behind the name?
C When you name an album, it’s like you’re sending a message to yourself in the future, that you need to remember, and it’s a very useful thing at any point in your life.
F It’s a way to live by, Enjoy It While It Lasts is a phrase to live by.
C Fred’s drinking his coffee right now and soon it’ll be gone.
F I know, because I was doing this interview, I wasn’t enjoying that half of the coffee, I wasn’t even thinking about it, now it’s gone forever, I’ll never experience that again, now when I go through the next half of the coffee, I’m going to be doing my best to enjoy it, swilling it around, letting it touch the roof of my mouth, seep in beneath my teeth. Enjoy It While It Lasts is a mantra that seemed like a perfect name for our album.

Fred the maternity expert AND philosopher. You’ve shot two music videos as singles from the album, ‘Celestine’ and ‘Chevy Thunder’, and in the beginning of the video for Celestine, there was a quote from Anthony Kiedis that stated “All great music videos are made in the desert”, what made you go back to the desert again for ‘Celestine’ after already shooting ‘Chevy Thunder’ in the desert?
F We made ‘Celestine’ while we were over to play the Coachella festival in California, and we had to make a music video, so that time we were like, while were here we may as well make use of this big, empty, sandy, place, we could’ve just used a green screen. It’s an inspirational place because there’s nothing there, lots of rock, stone, sand, scissors, paper, and wind.
C Lots of wind!
F It kind of makes you face yourself when there’s nothing around you, you think about yourself and all the mistakes you’ve made, all the people you’ve let down and all those you’ve hurt, and all those people who left your life and may never be coming back, and it’s during times like that…
C …you want to make a music video
F Exactly, so we did.

So apparently there’s an interesting story behind the song ‘Celestine’, would you care to elaborate?
F I can’t even remember writing the song now, but again it ties into the album title. The name of the song came because a girl added me on Facebook, called Celestine, I was like “I don’t know this person, but Celestine is a really cool name”, I think she was Swedish, and I wrote the song riffing off that name.
C I remember that, cause you said “Hey, this girl just added me on Facebook”, and then you said you were going to write a song about it.
F Yeah, I always get inspired for songs by really little things, so ‘Chevy Thunder’ I sort of written it on a jumper, thought it would be a good hook for a song, ‘Celestine’ was a girl’s name on Facebook, ‘Grey Shirt And Tie’ was a shirt and tie pack in a shop called Primark in the UK, which has really cheap and tacky clothing. Generally when I write songs, it always starts from just a minor detail that I notice in life, and then everything comes from there. But the main bit of the song like “If I could step back in time, I’d make no mistakes, I’d write all the songs, I’d meet all the girls”, it’s about coming to terms with a kind of crippling bitterness and jealousies. Keep the past in the past, live in the now, and make the best of it, pish, pash, posh, enjoy it while it lasts. A bit like Jed and his charming purple shirt, when he’s 50, he might not want to wear that shirt and he might look back and think “what was I doing?”, but he’s having fun, he’s living the dream, he’s having fun, he’s in KL, and he’s got a smile on his face.