Introducing our new feature ‘Bands Interview Bands’ with The Moonlandingz and the boys from Cabbage.
When embarking on this wondrous new feature, I decided to join together two of my most favourite bands in the UK at the moment, unconventional, musical deviants, The Moonlandingz and Manchester’s political, post-punk band Cabbage.
For anyone that is familiar with the two bands, you will know these guys aren’t your usual run of the mill bands.
Embracing anything that will kick the wasp’s nest, The Moonlandingz are an eccentric, screaming, psychedelic, acid-meltdown of musical culture throwing up all over the more sedated bands we find ourselves bombarded with these days. Self-professing that they give zero fucks about the music industry, they have no fear in saying and doing exactly what they want, which I personally applaud. Based on those nuggets of information who better to co-interview, none other than the controversial Mossley band Cabbage. Only on the scene for just over a year, the band are quickly gaining momentum as one of the next big things to come out of Manchester. (You can read more about Cabbage here… Interview)
If you have spent the past year hiding under a rock and aren’t yet familiar with this fine assemblage of musicians, let me tell you a little about the band.
Self-described as psychedelic, Ouija pop, and vocal in their thoughts on the dying music industry, the project featuring the Fat White Family’s, Lias Saoudi & Saul Adamczewski, Sheffield’s Eccentronic Research Council’s Adrian Flanagan and Dean Honer, Ross Orton & Mairead O’Connor. The lineup also includes Rebecca Taylor making appearances from Slow Club. And more recently, Sean Ono Lennon and his partner Charlotte Kemp Muhl. Sean, who not only featured on ‘Sweet Saturn Mine’ is also helping produce new album Interplanetary Classics. The album features the track ‘This Cities Undone’ from Sean’s mother, the original pioneer in performance art, the beautiful Yoko Ono.
The Moonlandingz birth was initially an entirely imagined concept. Created to accompany the 2015 Eccentronic Research Council album ‘Johnny Rocket, Narcissist & Music Machine…I’m Your Biggest Fan’ The album, (Which might I just add, is nothing short of a work of art) gives birth to The Moonlandingz and explores narcissism through music and spoken word.
It tells the story of actress Maxine Peake, who narrates on the album and plays a stalker obsessed with Johnny Rocket. Cod piece wearing Johnny Rocket (Lias Saoudi) is the lead singer of the band who are based in the (fictional) area of Valhalla Dale, Sheffield. Johnny Rocket likes nothing better than to shove ham and bread down his cod piece and drape them over any willing or unwilling participant (Well…..that’s if the rider wasn’t poor and the rest of the band haven’t feasted upon him). You are most likely to catch him with delightful, decorative, words like cunt or rock written in red lippy across his forehead. Charismatic Johnny Rocket is a bloody character.
However strange and eccentric as this may all seem, behind the smokescreen lies an extremely intelligent and socially conscious band, who’s sheer ability to weave their frustrations and anger into credible music whilst having a great time, cannot be described as anything less than genius.
The Moonlandingz are definitely a band you can and should believe in.
Cabbage: If you could have a terminal illness, what would it be and why?
AF: “Terminal Sadness, for happiness sake!”
Cabbage: Famous author and poet Charles Bukowski had a twin brother called Charles Bukkake. True or False?
Cabbage: Talking Heads had a tribute band called Screaming Feet, what would you like your tribute band to be called?
AF & LS: “Cabbage!!”
Cabbage: 2016 was an absolute holocaust of musical deaths. Who are you hoping dies miserably this year and how would you want them to go?
AF: “What with all the greats dying last year, I was truly envious and by and large, furious, that I didn’t get to join them ..What with me being one of the greats!!” (Laughs).
Cabbage: Hitler played a little piano, Idi Amin played accordion and Tony Blair played guitar. Who would be in your dream band of war criminals and mass murderers?
AF: ” One Direction featuring Hermann Goering.. After all, they didn’t half murder ‘One way or another’ by Blondie !!”
Rachel: I greatly admire your overall attitude and general loathing for the current music industry, if you could take upon yourself, how would you remedy the dire state of events?
AF: “Cheese with veins in it for creatives and water boarding for everyone else.”
Rachel: Tell me a little about Sean Lennon, how did the collaboration come about and has Sean visited Valhalla Dale, what delights of the city would or have you laid upon him?
AF: “Seans a very sweet and super talented guy & is a good friend of ours. He plays all kinds of weird and wonderful instruments on our album and has been nothing but a joy to work with. Together we have made not just a good album, but a great album, One that stands up and is very much a record for these times. I’ve known Sean for a couple of years now, we ended up working together after he did a ‘De-Mix’ of the Moonlandingz first single ‘Sweet Saturn Mine’, which we loved – and after that, Sean & I just ended up talking about mixing up the ‘avant wonky electronic psychedelic pop’ of what we do , with the ‘progressive psychedelic rock’ of what he does & pretty much soon after he invited us over to come and spend a couple of weeks doing just that up at his studio in New York. Prior to that, Sean did come and hang out with us in Valhalla Dale/Sheffield. We made a video for his mix of ‘Sweet Saturn mine’ here in Sheffield with him & his partner, Charlotte Kemp Muhl (who directed the video and is in it). We spent 14 hours in the ‘cinema room’ of the Picturehouse social filming and having a funny old time. When my musical partner in The Moonlandingz Dean (Honer) and I went back over to New York to mix the album with Sean, we’d mix a track or two a day, then come midnight we’d stop mixing and Sean, Dean & I would go into the live room and have these weird late night ‘twilight zone’ style jams, kind of spooky soundtrack stuff, mixed with haunted kraut rock jams & whimsical fairground music. We recorded it all, probably about 10 tracks. We might one day put it out on cassette or some other dying format under the moniker of, ‘The Valhalla Dale Working men’s Club Band’. In my head, I see ‘The V. D WMC Band’ as the band who inspired The Moonlandingz, these older gentlemen who like snuff and bingo but were banished from the Working men’s clubs of the North of England for refusing to play, ‘It’s Now or Never’ !! They’re an edgy bunch!!” (laughs).
Rachel: This Cities Undone, from the new album ‘Interplanetary Class Classics’ (released in March) features vocals from Sean’s mum the fabulous Yoko Ono. Tell me more about the track…
“It’s the track that closes our album and the one track I’m most proud of. The vocals she laid down for us are quite frankly the best vocals I’ve heard from anyone in years, she’s so primal in her delivery but simultaneously transcending. In my book, she’s one of the last Bonafide Legends we have, a great artist, a pioneer, a brave and tireless, one woman protest. It can only be an honour to have her on our record. She invented the avant-garde, the psychedelic, she’s the original Queen of freakout!!”
Rachel: Finally, Your new EP is out now ‘Black Hanz’.. For our readers who have yet to pop their Moonlandingz cherry, tell them why they should get immersed in it?
AF: “Because we are truly the only real alternative. We are thoughtful but without getting on a soapbox, we are inventive, sexy, curious, fun and sometimes very very daft. We make great ‘adult pop music’ and everyone else should just stop wasting people’s time, give up, tuck their shirts in and get a proper fucking job. Our only competition is whatever we do next. So unzip, de-robe & jump on !!”
Interplanetary Class Classics is The Moonlandingz debut album that is due for release on the 24th of March.
Pre order here….. INTERPLANETARY CLASS CLASSICS
Follow The Moonlandings on all links below….
Cabbage’s year full of work is now available on their EP Compilation.
Young, Dumb and Full of… Available on the links below.
The band play the first of their practically sold out tour at Hebdon Bridge on the 26th January.
Remaining tickets for the tour are available here……