By Brandon Judeh (Music Reporter)
For well over a decade England’s Kaiser Chiefs have quietly laid the groundwork for what is turning into a rich history of top UK singles. Such hits as “Ruby” and “Never Miss a Beat” has helped catapult the group into one of the UK’s top bands.
Now with a new album under their belt, Education, Education, Education and War, their fifth album to date, the Kaiser Chiefs are invading America this summer with a slew of tour dates, including a stop at the House of Blues in Cleveland on June 17.
Recently bassist Simon Rix spoke with The Raw Alternative about the new album, tour and the Kaiser Chiefs brief appearance at the 2012 London Olympics.
“Curlywand,” as his friends affectionately call him for his curly hair, also talked about new drummer Vijay Mistry and what lays ahead for he and his band mates.
Q: How’s the tour going so far? I see you have played a few promo shows.
A: Everything is going good so far. We have only played some promo shows in Europe, so we are really looking forward to doing a proper tour in America.
Q: What can we expect during the US tour? Any Surprises?
A: We are playing in a lot of new venues that we have never played in before and we will be playing a lot of new songs off the latest record. That’s what we are most excited about, is playing the new songs and putting on a great show for all the fans.
Q: Tell me about the new album ‘Education, Education, Education and War,’ it seems to be doing well.
A: We are very happy with how it turned out; we feel that with this record we got better as a band. We kind of felt like we hit a plateau a few years back, but now with this album we feel like we are soaring upward again. It has us all very excited about what’s next for the band and to keep working hard on improving and getting better as a whole. The record is currently doing well in the UK and getting a lot of radio play.
Q: I have to ask you about the title of the album, where did it come from? I would imagine it has a lot to do with the lyrics?
A: Yes the Album is about personal education and personal war. All of us kind of felt we were fighting for the band and with ourselves. Throughout the songs a recurring theme of education and war comes up in the lyrics and we captured a bit of a new sound.
Q: This is the first album without founding member and drummer Nick Hodgson and first with new drummer Vijay Mistry. What new dynamic does he bring to the band?
A: He’s a great new member and everything feels kind of fresh again and exciting. We get to see things through his eyes and that helps us see some things differently. He’s a very enthusiastic and exciting person, which is great because we are all from Northern England, which means we are never happy (laughs).
Q: Lets backtrack to the 2012 Olympics in England, what was it like playing “Pinball Wizard” at the Olympics in your home country?
A: It was great, a good day, but also an insane day. We kind of waited around and were very nervous because we were going to play for millions of people watching the event on television plus the ones in attendance. It was a little hard to get into a groove because we were only playing for about three minutes and then it was time to get off the stage, but we still enjoyed it. Being a part of the Olympics in our homeland was very special.
Q: What will the rest of 2014 and beyond bring for the Kaiser Chiefs?
A: We will continue to promote the album, do some festivals and probably come back to America for another tour as well. We are looking to get back into the studio fairly soon to maybe record another single, or even do an EP so stay tuned!