Of underwear, chewing gum and Clock Opera


A couple of weeks back, we were given the pleasure to meet with Guy Connelly and Dan Armstrong from Clock Opera. These two friendly British lads hopped to the rainy outside of the Berlin venue Festsaal Kreuzberg with us, opened some umbrellas and gave us an (sometimes quite hilarious) insight into their lives, involving dancing shakily, touring with Maximo Park and getting their dads to do their next music video. Enjoy!

PDC: So you have a lot of cute old people in your videos. Why is that?
Guy: I don’t know actually.
Dan: We did not ask for that. Because when you pitch for a video, you say a little bit about what the song is about, and what it means to you, and then directors send you their ideas. And we thought those were the best ideas that we got. They happen to involve old people.

PDC: We just love your last video „Once And For All“, we loved the actors so much and almost cried.
Dan: Yes, he is a good actor. They are both good actors.

PDC: So no philosophical background to this, getting old, time is running so fast…
Guy: Nah, we are not getting old…(laughs) But actually we are thinking about getting our dads to do our next music video. Che’s dad is a musician, he has been in bands, he has been in a prog rock band. And he still plays. Dans dad is a good actor, he’d be good. Andys dad would be really straight. He is the one we would have to persuade. He designs towns. So it would be his first music video. And my dad would probably pull out his dance moves. This basically means standing on the spot and shaking. Which is pretty much what I do.
Dan: It is! You could not see the difference.
Guy: Yes. So this is an idea we are toying with.

PDC: Oh yes, it actually reminds us of the last Holy Ghost! video…
Guy: Oh yes, but they have only two dads, we have four, so that is twice as good.
(Everyone laughs.)

PDC:  So you have done so many remixes. Is there anyhow who you are dying to remix still or have you done it all?
Guy: Well I think I do not wanna do a remix ever again, because I have done quite a lot. But I want to write instead. It has been really good for us, because we got to play with a lot of people that we remixed, but I think if you have done anything long enough you wanna stop. So I am at that level now. I still enjoyed it but for a while we’re gonna stop. If I could do anyone though…
Dan: NICKELBACK!
(Everyone laughs.)
Dan: Yeah we just did another interview and they asked „who would you never remix“. So that’s a little joke there.
Guy: Bruce Springsteen.

PDC: YES!
Guy: Because he does not have remixes.
PDC: But he has a lot of covers. You once said that doing a remix is more interesting than doing a cover…
Guy: Yeah, I have always been more drawn to that.

PDC: So you debuted with your album on The Hype Machine. We bloggers loved that. Was that intentional?
Dan: I think it was deliberate. But it was not my idea. Was it your idea?
Guy: Nope. Most of the things that happen we have no idea who has done them. We just go around and play gigs and then things happen. And we don’t know why.

PDC: So you just go play and get screamed at…
Guy: Well, yeah sometimes…

PDC: Do people throw underwear and toys at you?
Guy: No…
PDC: Never?
Dan: Nah, but we have gotten some biscuits. That is as far as this has gone. That was our first gift. Very nice but no underwear yet. We have thrown underwear at each other maybe.
Guy: We could throw underwear at the crowd…(laughs) But they would trow it back so that does not count…

PDC: So in your perfect show, what would the audience do or act like ideally?
Dan: They can do loads. But when they sing, that’s always special.
Guy: Although I found it a bit confusing. Because when people sing, they generally know more than I do. Or they sing different words. Even people in Britain sing words which are not ours. And then I get confused.

PDC: And then you start singing their words instead of yours…
Guy: Yeah…Really close to the start, we had a gig where somebody at the front seemed to be singing every single word. And this was impossible, because we never played these songs before. And then I realized he was just chewing gum. The whole time. So it is all about self illusion.

PDC: So, you have been touring a lot since then. What was it like touring with Maximo Park?
Dan: Really good! They are friends. Well Guy’s friends.
Guy: Yeah I have known them for a while. And also they like us. I have been in other bands and I did not play with them, so they really like us. And I think we are playing the same Festival with them in Frankfurt in about three days time…

PDC: Sounds great! Thank you so much for making the time!

Watch and listen to the full Clock Opera Show from Berlins last Introducing concerts on Arte Live Web!

Julia steht auf schwitzige Rockkonzerte, Whiskey und blutige Steaks. Sie braucht jede Nacht mindestens achteinhalb Stunden Schlaf und mindestens zehn Minuten um einen ironischen Witz zu verstehen.

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