Interview: Tom White of Electric Soft Parade

posted April 11, 2007

by Corinne

Tom White of Electric Soft ParadeHow are you?

Very well, indeed.

Care to introduce yourself?

My name is Thomas James White.

How did you get involved in playing music?

There was always a piano in the family home - me and my brother Alex used to jam on that. Then I picked up the guitar, then drums...

Where did the bandís name come from?

A man came to me in a dream. He was riding a Flaming Pie. He said 'It shall be Soft Parade with an Electric.'

The tracks from the new album, "No Need To Be Downhearted", that you have posted on MySpace have a big, bright and clean sound. What can fans expect from the new album? How does it compare to your previous releases?

In my opinion it is our most cohesive, accomplished work to date. I think we've achieved what we set out to achieve on our first two records: in a time when so much music patronizes the listener, we wanted to make a massive pop record that still challenged the listener at every opportunity.

Does getting accolades from big names, as the band has from Q, Mercury Prize and others, added any extra pressure for the new album? How do you feel about being recognized?

Those kinds of things no longer affect our music. There was a time when that kind of recognition felt awkward to us, but we've grown up and worked a hell of a lot since our second record. If anything happened now, we'd embrace it, for sure.

I read a quote from you stating that the bandís experience recording this album was different because ďthere was no budget.Ē Could you discuss that? Was the concept to keep things, in effect, cheap and get back to basics or was this not a conscious decision?

It was necessity. We had no choice. Either the record gets made on zero budget or it doesn't get made at all. We just saw that as a chance to really get into the engineering side of things, which was a total pleasure and a massive learning experience.

SXSW has just wrapped up for this year and Electric Soft Parade took part in this yearís festival. Was this your first trip to SXSW? How was the experience?

It was our second year. Had a few great gigs, but it's one of those things that's so fucking amazing the first time you go, you can't help but feel a little let down the second time.

Two of Electric Soft Paradeís members are brothers. How does that effect the bandís rapport and relationship?

It doesn't.

Name an underrated band you think deserves more attention.

Field Music.

What have you been listening to recently?

Field Music, RTX, Buck 65, The Aisler's Set, Ween, Bracken, Carla Bozulich, Mike Watt, Jay-Z, C-Rayz Walz.

If you could have written any song, what song do you wish you had written and why?

'Mister, Would You Please Help My Pony?' by Ween. It is the funniest song ever recorded.

Anything you would like to add?

To the readers: buy more Ween records. And to Ween: come to the UK more!!!!!!