We caught up with Astbury as he plans a fresh assault on the band’s loyal fan base. rushonrock: This tour of the UK is going to be the band’s most extensive for over a decade. What made you feel that now was the right time and what can fans expect from these shows?
Ian Astbury: WE STARTED AS A LIVE ACT IT IS IN OUR BLOOD TO PERFORM. WE ARE IN A NEW PHASE IN THE SENSE THAT WE ARE RONIN (MASTERLESS) WITH NO LABEL AND SELF FINANCED. WE WANT TO CONTINUE THE LONG LOVE AFFAIR WITH OUR UK AUDIENCE AND SHARE SOME NEW MUSIC AS WELL AS SOME DEEPER CUTS. THE BAND IS ON FIRE RIGHT NOW.
rushonrock: You’ve just released the newly formatted ‘Capsule’ Collection. What your inspiration was for this?
IA: I FELT THE CONVENTIONAL MODEL OF ALBUM TOUR ALBUM TOUR NEGATIVELY AFFECTED HOW WE WROTE USUALLY UNDER TIME AND QUALITY PRESSURE’S. THE IDEA OF THE CAPSULE IS TO RELEASE MUSIC AND VISUAL ELEMENTS IN MULTIPULE FORMATS AS WE COME UP WITH NEW SONGS.THIS ALLOWS US THE OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE AS WE WRITE. FEELS MORE IMMEDIATE.’CAPSULE 1’ IS OUT NOW INCLUDING ‘EVERY MAN AND WOMAN IS STAR’ + ‘SIBERIA’ AS WELL AS 2 LIVE TRACKS AND A SHORT FILM “A PRELUDE TO RUINS’ WHICH IS A TATE OF A LONGER FILM I AM CURRENTLY EDITING.’CAPSULE 2’ WILL BE OUT IN NOVEMBER INCLUDING 2 NEW SONGS “EMBERS’ + ‘UNTIL THE LIGHT TAKES US’ ALSO 2 MORE LIVE TRACKS FROM THE ‘LOVE LIVE’ TOUR AND A SHORT FILM TAKEN FROM A REHEARSAL OF ‘BROTHER WOLF SISTER MOON’ ‘CAPSULE 3’ WILL BE RECORDED IN NOVEMBER AND OUT IN JANUARY. THEN WE SHALL SEE WERE WE GO FROM THERE. NO HARD FAST RULES.
rushonrock: Most people know you as the vocalist in The Cult, but you’re actually very much immersed in the worlds of film, art and fashion too. Could you tell us a bit about your various collaborations, art that inspires you and a bit about the film you directed ‘A Prelude To Ruin’ (featured on the ‘Capsule’)?
IA: I FELL IN LOVE WITH FILM AT AN EARLY AGE ATTENDING THE NOW DEFUCNCT SATURDAY MATINEES. I AM A HUGE STANLEY KUBRICK AND AKIRA KUROSAWA JUNKIE AS WELL AS ANDREI TARKOVSKY AND WERNER HERZOG I ALSO LOVE RIDLEY SCOTTS FILMS. ESPECIALLY ‘THE DUELLISTS’ AND ‘BLADE RUNNER’ AND OF COURSE GEORGE LUCAS’S FIRST 3 ‘STAR WARS’ AND FRANCIS COPOLLA’S ‘APOCALYPSE NOW’ DESTROYED ME AS A TEENAGER AS MUCH AS THE MUSIC I WAS DISCOVERING….‘RUINS’ WAS CONCIEVED AND FILMED IN SOUTH DAKOTA IN AND AROUND THE PINE RIDGE RESERVATION. A STORY OF A YOUNG WOMAN WHO ESCAPES FROM THE TRAPINGS OF RESERVATION LIFE.I HAVE ALSO HAD A LONG LOVE AFFAIR WITH CLOTHES.BEFORE I COULD AFFORD ANYTHING I MADE MY OWN CLOTHING IN SOUTHERN DEATH CULT. AND NOW HAVE A LABEL ‘LAMF’ THAT IS A CROSS BETWEEN HIGH END STREET WEAR AND ASYMETRICAL CLOTHING SUCH AS RICK OWENS AND EARLY VIVIENNE WESTWOOD…..
rushonrock: You’ve also collaborated with the likes of Unkle, Trent Reznor, Tony Iommi, the Doors, Boris and original Strokes producer Gordon Raphael AND CHRIS GOSS. How did these come about, do you get a lot of requests for such collaborations or do you actively seek out new and exciting projects?
IA: I GUESS A MUTUAL ADMIRATION LEAD TO MOST COLLABERATIONS. I HAVE HAD A MODEST AMOUNT OF REQUESTS I RECENTLY RELEASED A PROJECT WITH JAPANESE BAND BORIS – BXI (SOUTHERN LORD RECORDS) THAT I AM VERY HAPPY WITH. I ADMIRE JAMES LAVELLE GREATLY WORKING WITH HIM ON ‘WAR STORIES’ WAS PARTICULARY GRATIFYING.
rushonrock: You’re an avid music fan. Who/what have been your biggest musical influences throughout your career and was it that first inspired you to become a musician?
IA: DAVID BOWIE,PUNKROCK,PSYCH,BLUES,KRAUT,ELECTRO THE STONES,THE BEATLES WHITE ALBUM AND REVOLVER,THE VELVET UNDERGROUND OF COURSE THE DOORS,NEIL YOUNG,BOB DYLAN,JIMI HENDRIX,IGGY POP,PATTI SMITH,LED ZEPPELIN,MUDDY WATERS,HOWLIN WOLF,THE SEX PISTOLS,THE CLASH,CRASS,PIL,JOY DIVISION,SO MANY OTHERS.
rushonrock: The band’s latest studio recordings were guided by legendary producer Chris Goss (Unkle, Queens of The Stone Age, Too Many DJs) whose band Masters of Reality will be supporting you on your UK dates. What brought this particular collaboration about and what was it like to work with Goss?
IA: FIRST OF ALL GOSS IS A MASTER MUSICIAN AND MASTER OF THE ARCANE ARTS HE IS A FILTER AND A FACILITATER. A LONG TIME AND CHERISHED FRIEND. I AM A DEVOTEE OF HIS WORK AS A PRODUCER AND AS A MUSICIAN. THE BLUE GARDEN FLOORED ME WHEN I FIRST HEARD IT. HE IS THE BUDDHA OF THE HIGH CALIFORNIA DESERT A MYTHICAL PLACE FULL OF MAGICK.
rushonrock: The visual aspect of your live shows has always been something to behold. Will you be doing anything extraordinary on this tour as a visual accompaniment to the music?
IA: WE ARE DEVELOPING VISUAL ELEMENTS INCORPORATING MONTAGE AND ORIGINAL FILM ELEMETS BUT ESSENTIALLY ITS US AND THE PERFORMANCE OF THE SONGS THAT DRIVES THE SET.
rushonrock: What’s next on the horizon for you after this tour? Will there be a new studio album from The Cult to look forward too and/or are there any further interesting collaborations you can tell us about?
IA: TOURING IS NEVER ENDING WE JUST HAVE ESCAPED THE SLAVE CYCLE OF TOUR/ALBUM/TOUR/ALBUM, THE FOCUS IS THE NEXT CAPSULE AND THE CURRENT SHOW’S SCHEDULE. WE WILL SEE WHERE WE SIT WITH MATERIAL. THERE ARE NO CURRENT PLANS FOR A FORMAL ALBUM.I WOULD NEVER RULE THAT OUT THOUGH.
The Cult play the following dates in January 2011:
Tue 18 O2 Academy Leeds
Wed 19 O2 Academy Bristol
Fri 21 HMV Hammersmith Apollo
Sat 22 Cambridge Corn Exchange
Sun 23 O2 Academy Bournemouth
Tue 25 Nottingham Rock City
Wed 26 Wolverhampton Civic Hall
Thu 27 O2 Academy Newcastle
Sat 29 O2 Academy Glasgow
Sun 30 Manchester Academy
Tickets go onsale 9am on 1st October 2010 priced at £28.00 regionally and £30.00 London (subject to booking fee) and are available from www.livenation.co.uk