An Interview With: The Young Gods

Posted: Monday 15 October 2018

The Young Gods are one of the most influential industrial rock bands of the past three decades and this month they're returning to the UK for an exclusive performance at Black Celebration. Ahead of their performance, we caught up with vocalist Franz Treichler to discuss their new album and what they've learned over the past 30 years.

You’ve spent a lot of this year in the studio, how are things shaping up? How much have you recorded?

The album is finished and mixed. It’s 53 minutes long and contains seven songs. The plan is to release it late February 2019, so not long to wait!

What have been your influences for the new album?

In 2015 we had an opportunity to have a residency in a very small club during a jazz festival. We jammed three sets for one hour, during five nights, in front of 80 people each night.

The three of us played with lots of instruments and we used backing instrumental tracks from electronic artists we like, such as Thomas Brinkman, The Colundi Sequence, TM 404 and others. We ended up with 15 hours of new music, so we selected the best parts and turned them into a more song-orientated format. The results are more down tempo and groovier than what we usually do, but still very much the Young Gods.

It’s your first album in 8 years, do you feel the break was necessary?

The break was long because in 2011, after our tour, things changed within the group. Both Al Comet and Vincent Hänni wanted to go on other paths. It took Bernard and me a bit of time to decide what to do. Cesare Pizzi rejoined the band in 2012 but we only toured the first two albums. It was only in 2015, when we took on that jazz club residency, that we decided to go on and write new music.

Will we be hearing any new songs at Black Celebration?

Yes, we will play new songs.

You’ve been a band for over 30 years now, what are the biggest lessons you’ve learned?

It is more interesting to make music with people than alone. I learned about my own limitations and I learned about tolerance towards other people’s limitations.

It’s been said that you inspired the likes of Nine Inch Nails, U2 and even David Bowie, do you ever feel the pressure to continue with such a legacy? Do you get nervous that the new music won’t have the same reception?

I’m very happy that our music gave inspiration to other musicians. I’ve been inspired by so many artists! I don’t feel any pressure, as our music was never designed to influence other people, it just happened that way. You can’t calculate and write music thinking you want to influence somebody. We were in the zeitgeist at some moments during these decades. Who knows how people will react to the new album. Let’s wait and see.

And who inspires you?

Generally my biggest influences are psychedelic music from the late 60’s and early 70’s. I was 16 years old when punk arrived and that was a big influence as well. In the 80’s I liked Einstürzende Neubauten and I loved the new emerging electronic scene during the 90’s.

Do you have any highlights from your career?

My best memories come from when we play live shows. When things align during a gig, there are moments of total euphoria, blinks of slowmo eternity. I love watching question marks floating above people’s heads in the audience while we play.

Why should people come to Black Celebration?

To see DAF play! They’re going to be amazing.

The Young Gods are playing their only UK show at Black Celebration this month, grab your tickets now!

O2 Forum Kentish Town: Sunday 28 October Buy Tickets

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