Fixers’ are gearing up for the imminent release of their debut album, We’ll Be The Moon; a record literally flooded with psychedelia, rock, dance and good vibes aplenty. These Oxford boys have generously doused their pop scribblings with heavy doses of euphoria – just imagine the Beach Boys heading to orbit. We had questions, lots of them, so we sent a crate-load over to frontman Jack Goldstein.
Bowlegs: So the debut album is in the can and ready for release – was it a long process? You already have a buzz on the web, was there a sense of pressure in the studio?
Jack: No real pressure in the studio, we just set about making whatever we wanted to make. Many of the tracks were learnt as we played them. Looking at the notes I made before we went into the studio, I can imagine a hundred other ways we could have recorded this album but i’m very proud of it as it is, we are already thinking and working on the next record though. We don’t waste anytime, its not that we want to instil a sense of urgency to our music, its simply that we like the idea of our audience hearing the music at almost the same rate it is recorded. Hopefully we can have a second record in the bag before the year is out.
Bowlegs: How do you go about deciding a track order? Most the songs have a big and vibrant sound – so what did you base it around? Were there arguments, last minute changes?
Jack: The tracklisting feels kinda like a journey of sorts, I don’t like to create too many pre-conceptions. I can safely say there were no arguments though, although we are all super passionate about shit, we very rarely argue.
Three tracks were cut from the final tracklisting. The tracks Black Gold, Who Says Boys and Bumblebees & Their Ways. Although I love all three, they didn’t add anything to the record that it didn’t already have. I can’t wait to release these tracks though.
Bowlegs: It’s hard to hear a specific influence in your sound, I sense psychedelic angles among the synths and guitars? Are there bands you listened to during the recording process?
Jack: So much of that late sixties, early seventies psych stuff is creepy and mediocre at best. However, it does have tremendous production and I think thats what draws us to it! Whats so exciting about Psych is that you get a real gem every now and then, great production and great songs.
I listened to a lot of Cocteau Twins, Brian Wilson, Todd Rundgren and Chris Bell while we recorded the album. I think we got introduced to Death Grips around that time too.
Bowlegs: I really like the track Amsterdam, it opens like a big 80s ballad then launches into tribal/space overdrive and back again? How do you write tracks like that, surely not on a guitar?
Jack: Much of Amsterdam was written on an old organ I used to own and as for the breakdown in the middle, it literally came from a simple guitar line and roto tom thing I had. We wanted to put the entire mid-section through a eight track tape machine so we hooked up a old tascam and ran all the instruments through, thats why it has this great hiss and wobble to it.
Bowlegs: Really Great World is another favourite – what’s the song about, the title is a positive title to say the least? Do you write from personal experience, from the mood you are in at the time?
Jack: I guess there is some relevance in the use of the word ‘Guaranteed’ towards the end of the song, I guess its a ditty attempt at Randy Newman/Kurt Weill irony. That said, I love it on a completely linear level too – Its naïvety has a innocent childlike feel to it; like reading from Where The Wild Things Are.
Bowlegs: You are from Oxford – is there a good music scene there at the moment? Do you see other bands you knew from the unsigned circuit on the up?
Jack: Oxford has a lot of music bubbling away beneath its surface. I guess its more like a cluster of scenes, if you want to use that word. I don’t think we really fit into any fixed conglomerate and i’m proud of that, we still have lots of friends who are musicians.
I’m excited about Beta Blocker & The Body Clock and I can’t wait to hear the Totally Enourmous Extinct Dinosaurs album or the Chad Valley one. I just did some vocals for the Chad Valley one actually, I think its going to be great.
Bowlegs: Is the band a full time affair? How do you make the leap from full time employment to full time musician, must be a risk?
Jack: Its full time at the moment, touch wood. You just have to make sure you don’t get lazy, always stay on your toes, fill your hours with work. We rehearse like crazy.
Bowlegs: The record ends on the acoustic and harmonised Good Night – where did that come from considering the sonic adventure we’ve just been on? More acoustic moments to come?
Jack: I think its the most Brian Wilson-esque moment on the record, it reminds me of my favourite BB track, Can’t Wait To Long. I wanted something meditative to come down too, we recorded the whole thing on an old tape machine in our bedroom one evening.
Bowlegs: What recent records have you all agreed are awesome – or do you have vastly different tastes?
Jack: Black Dice – Mr.Impossible and Delicate Steve – Wondervisions.
Bowlegs: Finally once the album is released am guessing it’s time to tour relentlessly, is that something you enjoy?
Jack: I much prefer recording but if the venue is small and the show is sweaty then it can be lots of fun.