FPT recently spoke with with Airick Woodhead of Doldrums about their debut album- Lesser Evil, Montreal's DIY scene, Amsterdam, and waiting for the retaliation.
You recently performed at SXSW in Austin, Texas. What was that experience like?
That was my fifth time playing SX and it’s usually a clusterfuck so I try not to make plans. We played a lot of shows. Something about it makes me feel like I’m in Montreal, so that’s nice, I love it.
Lesser Evil's been a long time coming. Does getting an official Doldrums album out there feel as if a weight's been lifted? Do you still believe in the "album"?
Yeah, I do. I listen to albums all the time. I think it’s the best way to hear music. I knew that if I was going to keep doing Doldrums, there needed to be an album. And I’m really happy we pulled it off.
Did you find a favorite place to play during your international tour with Purity Ring?
Oh yea. Amsterdam. And I’ve been back there since, it’s just fucking incredible. Playing a show for hundreds of people on mushrooms in a big warehouse… it’s unbeatable.
How was the music of Doldrums received overseas?
I think European audiences are a little more into the erotic exoticism that it’s in a lot of Canadian music. It’s funny, because over here it’s a little more humble.
Full disclosure- is there as much improv as there seems to be in your live shows?
You're primarily located in Montreal. I've heard there's a super strong house party/DIY scene out there. Can you tell us about that?
Yeah, it’s easy to romanticize. Whenever I’ve played any real shows with real venues here, it’s been pretty tragic. The house party/DIY scene is really for me, it’s how I make an impact, how I make a living. The locality kind of breeds complexity I think.
What's your favorite listening format? On which do you think Doldrums sounds best?
My favorite format is still vinyl. I haven’t really listened to one in two years, my record collection is just sitting in a closet. Probably Doldrums sounds the best on mp3, we’re a very digital band. Especially before Lesser Evil was made, we were a band meant to be heard on the internet.
From Napster to iTunes to Spotify, the music industry has gone in some crazy places over the past ten years. Where do you see the music industry going in the next decade?
I guess not a very positive place. The internet is really clamping down with Web 2.0 or whatever it’s called. To me, the golden age of music was 2010 when MySpace was big when you could just cruise around and look at aesthetics and check out the bands. Where as now, I think there’s a little bit of an oligarchy with what it means to be cool in music and it’s actually very hard to be a new band and get any recognition because there’s so many of them. I guess with the cool thing, it’s like with Twitter and Facebook and stuff, it’s now all about what they’re doing and what they look like instead of what music they’re making. And I think the reaction to that will eventually be very strong from the people who don’t give a shit about aesthetic and just want to play music. I keep waiting for the retaliation. Does that make sense?