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1. entretien avec Johanna Wedin
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Down-tempo.net: This album sounds like a collection of different,say, textures quite away from the opening track snowing downtown... any hint of a future direction?
Mai: Yeah, the album has quite a lot of textures indeed. I have so many influences,my first musical impressions was jazz and blues and later on pop and rock. For this first album I’ve tried to fit in many of these influences. For example, the voice sometimes keeps in the frame of blues, while the composition is a pop or folk or even an ambient song. In future directions I will try to explore this even further. I will try to break the rules a bit, and still mixing the new with the old. I will probably further explore folk music and make use of more instruments, thus less minimalist. And I will use more of the « pure » voice.
Down-tempo.net: Texts relate to long gone lovers , friends and angst. Who do you feel close to Text-wise? Music-wise?
Mai: Text-wise it’s hard to say, but I love the texts of Elliott Smith and Leonard Cohen for example. But there are also writers that have probably influenced me, like Selma Lagerlöf, Kafka and a more recent writer’s like Siri Hustvedt. Kafka’s work is very interesting, with a lot of angst and questions. Kafka threw his life work on the fire and it would have been burned if his friend didn’t save it....
Music wise, very hard to say as well, because there are quite a lot...Of course Bardi Johansson that I worked with on this album, Mùm, Sebastien Schüller, Hope Sandoval, Bonnie Prince Billy, Lonely Dear, Stina Nordenstam, Nico, Jeff Buckley, Gravenhurst etc.
Down-tempo.net: « Silly » is a pure pop song. Who were you thinking of when you wrote it?
Mai: Music wise or personally? Music wise I didn’t have any one in mind. I just felt like writing a happy love text. I actually wrote it to my first real lover.
Down-tempo.net: Light and celestial... Are you happy with the sound mix of the album?
Mai: I think the sound mix has a coherence, a coherence that I felt necessary for this album, since I’ve been experimenting with different textures and styles. I like the fact that it is celestial. However, it will not be like that on the next album, I would like to achieve more rough textures. My lyrics are not light and maybe on the next album I will try to reflect this more in the sound mix.
Down-tempo.net: A band said a while ago « it 's grim up north » do you agree
Mai: It is not surprising, but I think this grim view is slowely changing and people going to the North actually get suprised by how human and « non-grim » these countries really are. For sure life can be hard in the North, it is often cold and dark with not so many people living on the same surface and wild nature can often be very close. However, this is what makes you want to change every day life experince and create something. This romantic melancholy is often transmitted in music or art. This is certainly a cultural point of view ; but not many people in Scandinavia would comment on my music saying it is too sad or too slow etc., we don’t listen to music that way. It’s either good or bad, and if it’s good it means that you have been able to transmit a certain feeling. I think this is very human and the opposite to grim...
Down-tempo.net: Where is the best place to listen to « Still need a kiss »?
Mai: Honestly, I think you can listen to it anywhere, but preferably in private. And if you can, go to North America or Island, rent a car and drive trough open spaces in the middle of nowhere, that would be the ultimate listening.
Down-tempo.net: How did you come up with such title for the album?
Mai: Still Need a Kiss, means solitude, but not the pure sense of the word. It means the feeling of how everything changes too quickly and that people doesn’t have the time to stop and enjoy the things that are already there. It’s about going through life and always wanting more, never being satisfied. People today are lost.
Down-tempo.net: Nacopajaz hosts more contemporary electronic acts than composers with « real » songs... And you're a woman... any commentaries?
Mai: Well, I am really proud of being the first different act that was signed by Nacopajaz, and being a woman makes it even stronger. I think that Nacopajaz will be open to more acts like MAI now.
Down-tempo.net: You were on stage last week. How was it? How did you feel?
Mai: It was a few months ago since I was on stage, and I missed it a lot. Last week was very stressful, but I enjoyed it very much and I intend to do many more concerts soon...
If you were ...
a country : Island
a colour : Blue Marine
an animal. A fish
Mai: Thank you for the questions !
Publié le : 30 Juillet 2007.
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