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Forests

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Forests

Photo(s) by Forests - © 2008-2014

You have a split single with the band White Lodge being released through Gary Records in Chicago. How did that come about? Tell us more!

Jon: Our good friend Robyn Chang started up Gary Records after the failed Beat Happening cover band “Bad Seeds” broke up, and injured, though undeterred, she still asked us to be the first release on their label (They do international splits, so they don’t actually have to see us, which helps). It was all ZL’s fault.

國: 那時候聽說是Robyn問Jon,Jon問我說Robyn想找我們跟White Lodge一起發小合輯,我說好,過了兩天就在Jon的房間把bass錄完,再過了兩天,東西就完成了。


Forests is a powerful live band, and the two albums you’ve released aren’t lacking very far behind. How did you manage to capture that energy in your recordings? What’s your secret?

Jon: Going on overnight benders the night before you go record and walking in with a pounding hangover is a good one. Also, you can’t beat being able to stare longingly into each others eyes. There’s no upper like eyes that twinkle at you, saying, “Hey, there. I love you. But seriously though, don’t fuck up.”

國:我覺得我們現場的感染力還是遠大於專輯很多,原因很多,很可能是沒人會想在聽專輯的時候喝的太醉,然後我們現場真的很大聲,台上的大家表情也都很豐富,動作也很誇張,這些內容專輯都無法忠實地呈現。專輯反而就想要模擬上台的情況,但真實的情境反而是空蕩蕩的錄音室與嗜睡的團員與錄音師,要聽起來很嗨或者想要有live感,就是錄live吧,減少overdub的機會,大概是這樣。

尊龍: 是的!這是一種魔法!Magic!


You play a lot of gigs and it never feels stale for us in the crowd. How do you keep it fresh for yourselves? You always seem loose - is there much improvisation going on?

Jon: A steady supply of Xanax-like roofies. I think it comes from a cursory knowledge of really not knowing what the fuck we’re doing. Loose-ness comes from knowing that there’s such a thing called improvisation and then doing not that, but then sometimes inadvertently doing it.

國:我們會很愛即興的原因可能是認識彼此太久了,我們從08年的夏天開始玩團到現在已經邁向第六個年頭,誰會尻什麼招大概都知道,所以把那種挑釁的意味帶到演出中其實滿有趣的。


With your first album, Forests went through the conventional PR route - SXSW application, Eslite tour, etc - and now you seem quite intent on a more independent / DIY attack. What did you learn that first time around, and why this current approach? How can bands better control their own destiny?

Jon: I think that the independent/DIY aesthetic is too often misconstrued for unpreparedness (although that was what we were this time). There was no decision as to how anything was meant to be done, just the knowledge of the past and then applying it to the future. Every band should know that there isn’t one way to do things that promises everything. It’s chaos. Accept it. Love it.

國:我不會說第一張那樣有宣傳,第一sxsw我們也沒去,第二誠品音樂館巡迴根本沒有太大的宣傳意義。至於為什麼,可以說是大環境的結構問題,經濟不好啦,唱片本來就不賣啦,想搞藝術的本來就比較辛苦啦,又沒人逼你去啦,我們的音樂本來就小眾啦。但問問自己的良心,我是絕對不會想再去誠品巡迴,我也祝福現在任何一個樂團未來可以在誠品的巡迴之中音樂品質與財務狀況蒸蒸日上。

尊龍: 生命會自己找到出口。


There is a variety of opinion from musicians on the state of the music industry and how to deal with it, from Metallica suing Napster about illegal downloads and file-sharing to Wu Bai decrying the KTV-ization of popular music. What’s your take on it all?

Jon: Just do it.

國:我們的音樂現在根本不在音樂產業裡,所以我有點不知道怎麼回答什麼相關的問題。


Questions now for each of you. First, Zun Long: How the hell do you maintain all that energy? 

尊龍: 嗯?


Jon, please fill us in on the awesome “Vacation” single. Why isn’t that a Forests song? Do you plan more solo work that or how do you perceive it?

Jon: Everything that I happen to accidentally write is always for Forests. Sometimes things spill out (by accident) of that dimension and into another. It’s all by accident. There is always going to be “solo work”, but that’s an accident too. I perceive it as an accident. They’re always happy or surprising, like those times you find that you have the exact change for exactly what you want to buy, but accidents. Being unaware I have the exact change is something that rarely happens to me though. I’m on top of that shit. That part’s not an accident.


Guo Guo, how do define success as a musician, and what kind of success do you envision for Forests? How does this band compare to your other projects, like Sunset Rollercoaster?

國:我想反著回答,落日飛車的專輯超級後設,後設的意思就是我們根本沒有想講的話接觸到這張專輯的人覺得這是什麼就是什麼,呈現的是只有復古搖滾樂形式的空殻,落日飛車對我來講就是幽默感的終極體現,只是浪漫一點而已。森林就沒有那麼失語,呢喃之中大概還是個拼湊出一些想講的事情,因為jon負責主要的詞曲創作,他想講話的意圖比較強烈,起碼比我跟尊龍強烈,光是這點跟落日飛車就會是完全不一樣的團,也就無從比較起。我無法定義什麼叫成功的音樂人,我只知道保持幽默感、每天思考反省、練習,對我來說是確定的事,森林大概就是繼續努力寫歌吧。


From your Beach Boys shows with Roxymoron to the Ventures tribute at Halloween, you’re a band that isn’t afraid to try new things. What’s next?

Jon: Discovering the passageways to the Multiverse, then causing its implosion while laughing maniacally with all the other Forests’s’s’s.

國:就發片吧,暫時沒什麼特別計劃了。


See Also:
Frandé, Forests, Destroyers & Slack Tide - 2014/1/24
Forests - Facebook

Forests

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