interview with Haiku Salut

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Whilst I adore music in general, I very rarely fall head over heels for a band. So far my journalistic adventures have introduced you to two such acts, Twink and The Caring Babies. The advantage for these two acts is that they live across a big ocean, so can escape my overly earnest fandom. No such luck for Haiku Salut. From the moment I picked up their “How We Got Along After the Yarn Bomb” EP I have been drawn into their magical, beautiful musical world, a journey which continued with their gorgeous debut album “Tricolore”. Listening to their music truly is that, a journey, through folk, electronica alongside glitches and chiptune influences, it’s music to which you can dream and escape the real world. The latest album “Etch and Etch Deep” continues where the other releases left off, whilst sounding incredibly confident and complete.

^ How We Got Along After The Yarn Bomb EP


My first experience of their live show was in 2013 at a Daylight Music event at the Union Chapel, a venue in which they belong, such incredible music deserves to be performed in a setting to match. I have continued to stalk follow their progress and it has been a privilege to witness them blossom into the act they are today. On top of the wonderful music, they also happen to be amongst the loveliest people I have ever met, they deserve every success that come their way. They very kindly agreed to join me for a chat on a popular social network messenger application during one of their band practices.

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Interviewer Graham Boosey logs in for the awaited chat with the members of Haiku Salut

Graham
Hello Haiku Salut! I hope you are well, please introduce yourselves

Gem
Hallo! I’m Gemma!

Sophie
That’s Louise, she is sat on the sofa across the way

Louise
And that, I can confirm, was Sophie

Gem
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And that’s Pi

Graham
Ah man, I was gonna ask about PI, has he joined the band

Gem
He IS the band

Louise
He’s our morale

Sophie
We tried to teach him to hit the loop pedal once but he was hopeless.

Louise
Also he HATES the trumpet

Graham
I think he needs thumbs

So, I always like to ask

Sophie
Gemma taught him to play the piano on command!

Gem
True fact.
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Graham
Nice, maybe he can play the last note at every gig?

Do you remember the very first band you were in?

I was in a band called Nostril, I played tambourine

Mister Tambourine

Mister Tambourine


Gem
My first gig was playing in an offspring cover band

I hated offspring and didn’t know any of there music, I had loads of tabs all round my feet.

Needless say both it and I was shit.

Sophie
*their

I played the piano in a band at a church when I was fifteen. Lots of D Em G

Gem
And Louise and I used to write songs in halls about pressing matters such as how it would feel to be a mattress….

Graham
So you were some sort of hard hitting political type group?

Did you all meet at University?

Gem
Yeah! Me and Lou were lumbered into halls together with a load of bizarre people we had nothing in common with. It was a friendship born from necessity!

And Sophie we met through a mutual friend

^ The mutual friend?

^ The mutual friend?


Graham
Do you remember the first record you bought?

Louise
Mine was a double whammy – Spice Girls and Aqua. What a combo!

Graham

That really comes through in the music

Sophie
YES! mine was Shine 3 on cassette from Woolworths. Cast, Echo belly, Menswear, Pulp 😎

Gem
Mine was a compilation of reggae shortly followed by the PJ and Duncan CLASSIC ALBUM ‘Top Katz’

Sophie
Gemma still has her PJ and Duncan tshirt

Gem
It’s an asset to every wardrobe

Graham
I’m strangely jealous

Gem
You can borrow it?

Louise
Bit weird

Graham
I think that might be hideously tight

Just assuming

Gem
Louise is just jealous

Graham
Have you never offered her a lend

Sophie
I have a picture of it somewhere. Let me see if I can find it.

Gem
Nah I only offer that to my real friends

Louise
I’m alright anyway ta, it’s probably covered in cobwebs by now

Graham
Nice. In the meantime, what sort of music did you listen to growing up, I guess I’m intrigued as to how we got from PJ and Duncan to the music you create now

Not that I can’t hear Byker’s finest shining through
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Wow, that somehow managed to be far worse than I could’ve possibly imagined

Sophie
I go through phases. Late teens I was into shmindie stuff. Then I liked chip tune for a while. Then I backed myself into an IDM and electronica hole for YEARS. Now I like music with singing and feels again so that’s good

When we first became friends we shared a love of anti folk. Moldy Peaches, Jeffery Lewis and Kimya Dawson..

Gem
I listened to rubbish music until u was about 15 then I turned into a goth and listened to ALOT of placebo and some industrial music before falling madly deeply with the moldy peaches and Kimya!

Graham
It’s interesting because you sound like a pretty neat amalgamation of a lot of those things, did you create Haiku Salut with any particular sound in mind?

Click to hear ‘Tricolore’ by Haiku Salut


Louise
We started it with a an idea of Beirut and early Yann Tiersen

Are you all classically trained musicians?
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Sophie
I don’t have any training apart from a few keyboard lessons after which my parents entered me into an organ competition. I came third.

Out of three.

Louise
I played piano since I was about 14. I started learning the accordion about 6 years ago, that’s basically how we came to start the band!

Sophie
Gemma is preoccupied signing herself up for a roller derby team but she has some classical guitar grades.

Graham
I often get confused attempting to make cereal but you seem to be able to seamlessly switch constantly between different instruments on stage, is that terrifying and is it tempting just to pre-program everything?

Gem
That would be so boring!

I like the feeling that everything’s running away from me and I’m probably going to make a massive tit of us all any minute

Graham
Better to live dangerously I guess

Is it hard to maintain the band whilst working and studying?

Louise
It does take a lot of planning! We all have instructions on our set lists

Sophie
An extra weeks annual leave would be handy!

Graham
Is the band something you would like to do full time or are you happy fitting it in around your lives?

Sophie
I think we all recognise how difficult it is to make a living from music nowadays. We’re happy doing what we’re doing and seeing what happens

Graham
The new album developed the ideas of Tricolore, and sounds very confident, was it a vastly different writing process?

^ click to magically transfer yourself to the sound of the new album


Gem
It’s a lot more of a focussed effort. The first album was a collection of songs that were written when we were trying to find our sound

Louise
We wrote Etch and Etch Deep over a shorter space of time

Sophie
It was similar in the way that some songs came together super quick and some took months

Graham
Saturdays performance at the Union Chapel was very special, it felt like I was watching a band at the top of their game

Sophie
Thaaannnks Graham!

Louise
Thanks! It was pretty damn awesome for us too.

Graham
Where do you think you will go next with the band?

Gem
Japan! We’ve literally just booked our tickets!
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Graham
Woah! That’s amazing, to tour?

Sophie
Yes! Our album came out there on Ricco Label. Hopefully going to climb mount Fiji too!

Hallelujah

Hallelujah

Graham
Outside of the band, what do you enjoy doing, aside from climbing things?

Louise
Dog walking!!

Gem
Me and Sophie do actually like to go proper climbing!

And I’m pretty sure I’m soon to become the best roller derby player there has EVER BEEN

Ouch, keep safe

Louise
I’m joining a karate club so I’ll let you know how that goes. I want to be a black belt

^ above pictured: a Black Belt

^ above pictured: a Black Belt


Gem
Baby steps yeah?

Sophie
What do you think Gemma’s name should be Graham?

Graham
So essentially, not only are you an awesome band, but you could kick the shit out of anyone who says otherwise?

Sophie
Gemmaroids? Gemmatalia?

Graham
Gemmaroids is awesome
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Gem
Never going to happen.

Louise
Ha! I imagine that would frowned upon within the roller derby community..

Graham
I first saw you play at The Union Chapel nearly 2 1/2 years ago now and decided to pretty much stalk you since. Firstly, thanks for not having me arrested

Secondly, are you experiencing higher levels of fandom?

Gem
We’ve not received even one piece of fan mail yet so I guess no

Graham
😦 I shall have to rectify that

Louise
We once received a love letter from Niall from the Spook School

But he sent them to other bands too so I don’t think we were special…

Sophie
We had to buy gold and silver sharpies to autograph our new album so that’s a sign of success!

Graham
And you were on Buzzfeed……

Sophie
Yes! Industry fodder we are!

Graham
So I shan’t waste anymore of your time, If people want to find out more, where is best to head?

Sophie
haikusalut.com

Or twitter @haikusalut

Or myspace

JOKE NOT MYSPACE
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Graham
Ah Myspace, I miss myspace

Anything you would like to add or plug?

Gem
we’re playing in Leicester as part of White Noise festival on December 4th

Louise
And Insider Festival in Edinburgh on 12th December where we’re doing our Lamp Show

Graham
Thank you so much for your time, give Pi a hug from me!

Gem
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Graham

This entry was posted in alternative, ambient, electronica, interview, pop and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to interview with Haiku Salut

  1. Feminatronic says:

    Reblogged this on Feminatronic and commented:
    As expected a different sort of interview from Yeah I Know it Sucks but that’s the no bad thing. I’m just in time for a couple of gig plugs too : ))

  2. Pingback: Ver uit de Maat Festival (investigative report by GB) | Yeah I Know It Sucks

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