Sunday, November 18, 2007

extrawack! interview with The Hives

This past week saw the release of the highly anticipated new album from The Hives, The Black & White Album. Hives drummer Chris Dangerous gave us a call from the road to talk a bit about the new record, touring with Maroon 5, working with Timbaland & Pharrell, and getting rewarded for drunken plant-tossing in the Deep South.

extrawack!: I was just looking at The Hives Wikipedia entry, and it describes The Hives as having a 'punk-influenced garage rock" sound. Do you agree with that entry?

Chris: That’s OK I guess...I mean I’d like to it to say it’s Rock and roll, pretty much.

You guys are out on the road with Maroon 5 right now, which seems like a unlikely did that happen?

You know, I think they wanted Tool on the, we’re actually labelmates, and I think they wanted a really good support band, and I think they got the best one.

Well, I’ve seen you play a few times in New York before, and and I’ve often thought, "I’d hate to have to play after those guys!"

That’s the thing most people think...never let The Hives support your band!

How are you going over at those shows, playing for people who wouldn’t normally get out to a Hives gig?

Exactly! That’s the thing. When we got the call for the tour, we thought that one of the things we really missed was playing for people who hadn’t heard us. When we headline, the moment we walk on the stage we’ve already won, you know? It’s really fun to have to fight for the audience to like you. We really like this tour for that reason. It takes us about two songs to get the audience on their feet, then eventually they are clapping and going bananas.

I just got a chance to listen to the new album, and I notice it’s got a more electronic sound than previous albums. Are you using synthesizers in your live show now as well?

No, so far we are not. We use a lot of petals for the guitars, but that’s it. We’ve always had synthesizers on the albums, but on the new one I guess you can tell that a little more since they are higher in the mix than usual.

Speaking of the mix and production, you guys worked with Timbaland and Pharrell in the last year or so. How did you hook up with them?

The Pharrell thing came about when we were in Japan, he came backstage and told us he loved us and wanted to work with us some day, so we remembered that when it came time to start the new album and just gave him a call. We worked with him for a few weeks in Miami.

With Timbaland, we worked on his record, then we recorded with him in Stockholm for our record, but none of it got finished in time so it didn’t make it onto this record.

I’ve heard you guys also worked with Jack White and The that true?

It’s sort of correct. We went to Nashville to see a Nashville Predators hockey game where Peter Forsberg was playing, and the next morning Pelle stopped by the studio where the Raconteurs were recording, and they needed to record the sounds of somebody’s footsteps walking across the floor. And that’s what Pelle did. He was the footsteps.

So his credit on the album is "Footstepper"?

Ha! Yes, that’s right.

I read recently that The Hives were presented the keys to the city of Oxford, on earth did that happen?

I don’t know, because we sort of made fools of ourselves there! We got really drunk one night and took plants out of the pots in the city square and threw them around and stuff...but the mayor loved it, so we were presented with the keys. One each.

I noticed on your website that sometimes you refer to your fans as "Dorks and Dorkettes". Is that what you like to call them?

Not me, I didn’t write that. It sounds like something Nicolaus would say.

The Hives - "Tick Tick Boom":

No comments: