Monday, 29 March 2010
Stereo MCs Talks Ether Festival-Artrocker
Rob Birch (Stereo MCs) talks Ether Festival
Holly Eells gets to catch up with the vocalist Rob Birch from the award winning Stereo MCs and see how he feels to be headlining such a diverse festival.
Stereo MCsEther Festival is a nine day event taking place from Friday 16 April - Sunday 25 April at the Southbank Centre. Offering art, technology and cross-arts experimentation and showing nothing but entertainment, highlights from this year’s event include: Lou Reed's Metal Machine Trio; Gil Scott-Heron; Chris Cunningham; The Herbaliser; and Tom Middleton. Stereo MCs + The Bays are also headlining this year’s festival.
Artrocker: How do you feel about headlining in your home town?
Rob Birch (Stereo MCs): Well it’s great to be playing a gig in London. We try not to think about it much as we might get a bit edgy, we try to think wherever we play we want to put in a max performance and not dwell on where it is or expect too much from a particular place. But it sounds nice and is something different to what we are used to doing and there’s some good music playing. It is always a pleasure to be playing at an event that has got quite a variety of acts going on and you would usually get an open minded audience, which is always a positive thing.
Artrocker: There are some amazing acts, who are you looking forward to checking out?
Rob Birch: Everything seems fairly interesting, never seen The Herbaliser before, we’ve also never seen The Bays and there are some decent DJs on as well so I am fairly excited just being down at the event.
Artrocker: There are many genres being jam-packed into the weekend line up, which ones interest you?
Rob Birch: To be honest I am so focussed on being in the studio and writing, I don’t know too much what’s going on! But it’s good to check out all the different acts as you can become quite bleak at times when you are DJing or in the studio. It’s good to see people you don’t know, check out live bands.
Artrocker: You are doing a special collaboration with The Bays, what can we expect?
Rob Birch: Well to be honest with you that’s very much a spontaneous sort of thing, if it happens it happens. It’s a night of live entertainment so we are not really planning anything in particular. Their whole attitude is you go on you, do something that you don’t know you are going to do. I figured not think about it too much too hard until you come to doing it, that’s what the excitement is all about; not knowing what you are going to do.
Artrocker : Will you be going back to the 90s with some of your classics or keeping it fresh?
Rob Birch: We play like any artists, you play exerts from all the music and records that you have made. Tracks from Supernatural, Connected, Deep Down and Dirty, Double Bubble, Paradise and maybe a couple of other new tracks.
Artrocker: Why should we come down to Ether Festival?
Rob Birch: If I was a punter, I guess I would be thinking “what am I doing tonight? There’s a festival south of the river and it’s pretty easy to get to. Decent DJs playing, a bunch of live music, which is down my street”. Tom Middleton, the music fairly heavy and I could be guaranteed I was looking for. It’s different; there isn’t one avenue or one sort of club music going on. It’s more of an event. It’s not just a party night.