2014 Artist Survey: Glass Animals

Joe Seaward on the Mice Bucket Challenge, 2014's Best Albums, and the Question They Are Tired of Being Asked

Feb 06, 2015 Issue #52 - January/February 2015 - St. Vincent
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For Under the Radar's 12th annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to 2014. We asked them about their favorite albums of the year and their thoughts on various notable 2014 news stories involving either the music industry or world events, as well as some quirkier personal questions.

Check out our Best of 2014 print and digital issues for answers from alt-J, Camera Obscura, Chromeo, The Dears, Death From Above 1979, Deerhoof, The Drums, The Flaming Lips, Hookworms, Sondre Lerche, of Montreal, Ought, Owen Pallett, The Rosebuds, Still Corners, Strand of Oaks, Teleman, Sharon Van Etten, The War on Drugs, Warpaint, Woman's Hour, Wye Oak, Zola Jesus, and others.

 Here are some answers from Joe Seaward of Glass Animals.

[A shorter version of this interview ran in Issue 52, the Best of 2014 and January/February 2015 Issue, which is still on newsstands. This is the full version of the interview.]

Top 10 Albums of 2014

Sorry, I can't order these. Music is not a competition. That's like asking me to order my family. Here are 10 albums I liked made in the last year. 

Caribou: Our Love

Beyoncé: Beyoncé 

Warpaint: Warpaint

Flying Lotus: You're Dead!

Kate Tempest: Everybody Down

Todd Terje: It's Album Time

Aphex Twin: Syro

FKA twigs: LP1

DOOM: NehruvianDOOM

Taylor McFerrin: Early Riser

What was the highlight of 2014 for either you personally or for the band? 

There have been so many highlights this year! Playing in America for the first time, travelling and playing a sold-out tour in Australia, releasing our debut record, going back to America and touring for a month in front of thousands of people, playing on national television there. Drinking margaritas in California and eating pizza in NYC. It's been an amazing blur.

What was the low point of 2014 for you? 

Drew [MacFarlane] made the move onto contact lenses, which meant an end to our fave game of how many times a day he lost his glasses. That had a big impact on band morale.

What are your hopes and plans for 2015?

I hope for world peace and that everyone has a wonderful Easter. I'm planning on convincing Drew that the move back to glasses is a sensible step to take.

U2's new album was downloaded for free into millions of users' iTunes accounts without their permission. Was it a wonderful gift to music fans or an invasive action that devalues music? Also, which artist, other than you, deserves to have their album automatically downloaded to half a billion people more than U2?

I have no interest in U2 whatsoever, I'm afraid! It's on all three of my Apple devices and I haven't listened to it once. I only found out about it last week.

Did you take part in the ice bucket challenge? If not, why not? Grimes declined due to animal testing issues, was the grief she got for that deserved?

No. None of us got nominated. Sadface. Need more friends. We would have though. Probably. We were so the wrong band for this quiz! I have no idea what Grimes did, did she get it confused with the mice bucket challenge? Such an easy mistake to make. Poor Grimes. 

What's your craziest theory for what happened to the missing Malaysian Air flight?

I've heard some stuff about Russians and Americans and Chinese and James Bond. I think it was James Bond's last hoorah.

Mark Kozelek was criticized in 2014 for insulting his audience (calling them "hillbillies" for talking during his set) and for making fun of The War on Drugs when their sound bled over to the stage he was playing. What responsibility do performers have to be respectful of their audiences and fellow bands?

Performers are human beings who get frustrated and angry like fans. But part of being a role model is having to adapt your behavior and set an example. I suppose it depends what kind of career he wants. I don't know who he is. If he is a punk, then he probably doesn't care. If he's a pop star, he probably should.

"Weird Al" Yankovic was back in a big way this year. If he were to lampoon any one of your songs, which one would you want it to be? What would the "Weird Al" version's lyrics be about?

He would have no idea who we were. I would be very surprised if he did that. He would probably turn "Gooey" into a song about cheese, no? And call it "Chewy." I have no idea.

Which common criticism of your music do you most agree with?

I will, if you tell me the most common criticism of your interview technique you agree with?

What's the most uplifting or heartwarming fan interaction you've ever had?

One fan brought us an ENORMOUS bag of weed in America. We made him keep it. It was worth hundreds of dollars. It warmed my heart though. He had grown it himself.

What's the topic no one asks you about in interviews that you wish they would? Conversely, if you could get journalists to stop asking you one question, which would it be?

I don't think anyone has ever asked why we are called Glass Animals. KIDDING! We don't get enough questions about good food. We love good food. 

Who from your youth (such as a former bully, an unrequited love) do you most hope pays attention to the fact that you're now a successful musician?

Sam, if you are reading this, PAY ATTENTION. You know who you are, and why.

www.glassanimals.eu

 



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