UNDER THE SPOTLIGHT | An Interview With Czech Shoegazers Manon Meurt.

Manon Meurt 2

Czech based dreamy shoegazers ‘Manon Meurt’ are no strangers to Primal Music. Our contributing writer and Wozniak guitarist Sarah Cuthbert-Kerr reviewed their sunning 6 track self-titled 2014 release early last year and now we’ve caught up with them to ask them some probing questions about their band history, the forthcoming Canadian vinyl re-issue of their self-titled debut album via ‘Label Obscura’, influences and recommended listening! Big thank you’s to Manon Meurt for taking the time to answer our questions.

SCK: Who are Manon Meurt and how did you get together? 

MM: Manon Meurt is: Kateřina Elznicová – vocals, guitar, pets’ lover, Vojtěch Pejša – guitar, vocals, delay collector, Jana Karlíková – bass, giggler & Jiří Bendl: drums – driver, VW fan.
We met each other at the same high school and ended up in the same band.

SCK: Tell us about the Czech shoegaze scene?

MM: It used to be very popular in early 90’s but disappeared, just as it did in the rest of the world. All the bands broke up or play something different nowadays. One example of this is Ecstasy Of Saint Theresa, which is the “Holy Grail” of Czech shoegaze, but now they play electronica. Today many bands borrow shoegaze influences, but there is no “pure” shoegaze scene. Even we don’t consider ourselves as “purebred” shoegaze. 

SCK: What were your influences when you were writing your self/titled debut album?

MM: We can name many bands who we listen to. Every member of our band has his own favorites – Deftones, Sigur Ros, Russian Circles, Tamaryn, NIN, and No Age.

SCK: Where was it recorded? Do you enjoy going into the studio? 

MM: It was a small but well-equipped studio in Prague. Well it was new experience for us, so we didnt know exactly what to expect, but it was great feeling to hear our music in a new way, other than just in rehearsal room or on the stage.

SCK: The record has a lovely sense of space, which is quite unusual for this genre. How did you make that happen? 

MM: We think it was because we didn’t want to make it as loud as other modern recordings. We insisted on there being space, and everything else just happened.

SCK: Your debut album’s just about to get a re-release on a Canadian label, how did that come about? 

MM: Lucky coincidences – Tim Lidster wrote us to tell us he had heard Manon Meurt on youtube. He said he liked it and that he wanted to release it on his new label “Label Obscura”. We are really grateful that he made this possible.

Manon Meurt photobooth

SCK: Vinyl/ cd/ download/ tape – what’s your favourite format? Why? 

MM: In the first place, format is not very important for us. We grew up on tapes, then listened to CDs and mp3s, but after all that, we re-discovered the beauty of vinyls. Now we prefer to buy vinyl right after a concert rather than just downloading. We come from a scene, where is common to directly support the bands and share. Vinyls seem something like a “captured memory” of that evening. You can imagine what it means to us that there is someone across the ocean who wants to release and share our music.

SCK: Are you working on new material just now? What new sounds can we expect?

MM: Of course, we have been working on new material since the album was released in the Czech Republic. We play some new songs live, and we invest into our sound. This year, we have to purchase a new van so if you have a spare VW T4 California, we would really appreciate it. 🙂

SCK: Any festivals/ tour dates lined up? 

MM: A small Czech tour is ahead, and we will play a few gigs in Germany, some summer festivals in Czech Republic, but the biggest thing is a spring UK tour with Garrett Klahn (a guy from Texas Is The Reason).

SCK: What bands do you listen to when you’re driving to and from gigs?

MM: Tame Impala rules with Let It Happen and The Less I Know The Better now. But usually we listen to a mix that is carefully prepared by bandmates. It is all genres, as you can imagine. Unknown names included …..

 

LINKS:

facebook.com/manonmeurt

bandzone.cz/manonmeurt

manonmeurt.bandcamp.com

ABOUT THE INTERVIEWER:

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In her time, Sarah Cuthbert-Kerr has attended raves and rock clubs. She enjoys pedals, pizza and spy dramas. Sarah also plays guitar in Edinburgh-based noisemakers Wozniak and is co-founder of Morningside Young Team who put on gigs and put out records for discerning audiences who enjoy fuzz and confusion.

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