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Feuilleton Musik 3. Januar 2016

11 Fragen an Pete MacLeod

Nur wenige Namen dürften so sehr mit dem britischen Rock Business der letzten 20 Jahre verbunden sein wie der von Alan McGee. Der Schotte gründete Anfang der 80er Jahre das britische Independent Music Label Creation Records, das im Laufe der Zeit so berühmte wie berüchtigte Bands wie beispielsweise Primal Scream, Oasis oder The Libertines hervorbrachte. Vor kurzem entdeckte er einen Musiker, für den er sich nach eigenen Angaben kurzzeitig eine Pause vom Ruhestand gönnte: Pete MacLeod – ebenfalls Schotte und musikalisch in ähnlicher Tradition wie seine bekannten Vorgänger stehend. Ein Glücksgriff, wie wir finden. Mit dem Track Minotaur bietet Pete einen ersten Vorgeschmack auf sein neues Album, das für 2016 angekündigt ist und von dem bekannten britischen Musikproduzenten Youth produziert wurde. Inspiriert von balearischen Club-Klängen dürfte die neue Platte wesentlich elektronischer als der Vorgänger „Rolling Stone“ klingen. Wie er darauf kam, verriet er uns u.a. exklusiv im Interview.

Getting ready for the show: Pete MacLeod (c) Pete MacLeod
Backstage: Pete MacLeod (c) Pete MacLeod

Gin or Tonic?

Pete MacLeod: Tonic!

Rolling Stone or Shakermaker?

PM: Rolling Stone of course!

Beach or Highlands?

PM: The highlands with a beach and the sunshine.

You are quite active on social media – so we were lucky to catch you on Twitter. How are you using Social Media?

PM: It’s all relevant today in promoting new and older music. Another path for people to find what it is they connect with. I think that’s a great thing. It’s immediate to those who are interesting and interested.

First time we get in touch with your music when we listened to “Rolling Stone” in 2013. Now your sound has changed a lot. Why have you decided to do much more electronical music?

PM: My belief from day one with attempting to be creative is that nothing should be compromised in regards to trying different sounds and directions. That’s why I fly solo as the possibilities are endless and only your own doubt and insecurities can really get in the way of that yknow…that’s what I found out but had that perception before I got to where I am just now with my music. The possibilities are endless. A song can be arranged and recorded in many different ways and that goes for the artist who invented the idea. I’ve always wanted to make a record like this and was lucky enough to work with a producer who knows what he’s doing with this soundscape.

Your second record is announced for 2016. Which parts of “classical MacLeod” will be still included? Can you imagine to hear your new tunes in dance clubs on Ibiza?

PM: I hope it comes out in 2016 yes…that would be good. My songwriting, guitar playing, arrangements and vocals are all included. Which was the blueprint for the first LP too. Yeah I experienced that a little in early 2015 in Ibiza. Why not? I listen to Balearic music myself and love it so it makes sense to make music I actually love yknow. It has no boundaries. If someone likes it then they can play it wherever they want as far as I’m concerned.

Gegen die Highlands eingetauscht: Pete auf Ibiza (c) Stefan Dürr/Tamara Sinti
Gegen die Highlands eingetauscht: Pete auf Ibiza (c) Stefan Dürr/Tamara Sinti

Your current single is called “Minotaur”. Why did you choose this mythological creature for the title?

PM: It is not really a single as such…it’s just streaming on soundcloud at the moment for anyone to have a listen. Well the meaning of what I was getting at was the two sides one may have of our character. The dark side and the not so dark side haha…with the lyric ‚the beast is in me, the least that’s in you’…referring to my own demons and if it makes it less heavy for another to deal with there own personal issues and flaws…then I’ll accept that burden too whilst showing my faults if it helps them.

We read that legendary Alan MacGee came out of retirement to manage you. How did you manage that?

PM: Well…the simple answer would be…I managed it! But on a personal level Alan means the World to me. He’s a one off and it’s great to see he’s into it all again. He wanted it himself. At the time I was a friend who encouraged him like he is doing for me now.

You produced your debut by yourself. How would you describe your work with Youth, who produced your new record?

PM: I did yes…thanks for noticing that. Nobody ever really mentions that. It was a learning process but I’m proud of producing my first album and being signed yknow. I can always look back on that and for inspiration. It’s important to be inspired by yourself if you believe in what you do. Ego aside…that’s just a fact of the matter. If you don’t believe then what the fuck are you actually doing? Wasting your time and everyone else’s? Youth is another one off. A great man to work with and had I not produced the album before I might not have been prepared yknow…but I was ready and I feel we worked really well together. It could have went tits up but it didn’t so another nod for belief really. We co-produced the album because most of my arrangements, ideas, lyrics, and playing from the beginning stayed throughout the recording process and to the end. Because Alan, Youth and I had discussed what we wanted to do with this album. The only question to be answered was would it work. Big question right enough…but it did. We are all equally happy with the result.

Active followers of your social media channels could have realized that you are well connected with famous british musicians like Noel Gallagher. Could you imagine to work with artists like that in the future?

PM: I look up to Noel. For many different reasons. One being he’s a great songwriter…another being Alan signed Noel to Creation. Noel looked up to Johnny Marr and Morrissey…probably in the same way I look up to him? I’d like to work with Noel in some capacity one day if he wanted…I’d like to open for him. I also believe Liam has an amazing album in him as a solo artist too but wether that happens or not is for Liam to decide yknow. I’d also like to work with Liam and Richard Ashcroft. That would be a great experience. Horace Panter and Steve White feature on my first album as guests. I asked Noel if he wanted to play on my album but I was unlucky at the time because he was taking the year off with family…perhaps he was just being kind but if you don’t ask then you’ll never really know eh. Maybe one day if I make my mark as an artist. I wrote a song for Liam to sing on my new album but I bottled asking him if he would do it. I hinted to Bonehead but just left it at that. Two knock backs from my peers might not be so good for me haha. Many artists inspire me and I would be open minded enough to work with many too…Massive Attack would be KooL! Glasvegas too. Another artist I look up to is Paul Weller. Because as a solo artist he has moved into different genres…Bowie did the same too. That’s what I love about being a ’solo artist‘. I like a lot of electronica music too and would like to work with artists like that as well…remixes are good as well…sometimes ha. At the moment Robert Allan is playing guitar with me. Robert plays guitar in Glasvegas. They are great and James is a poet songwriter with the roots of growing up in Glasgow. But really it’s all open isn’t it?…that’s what the Internet has done too I think…it’s opened up all the different types of genres and left it all to be explored for creative minds. I’ve been listening to a lot of Mazzy Star lately. They are great.

At the moment your touring UK with “Happy Mondays”. What do you think the future will bring for you and your music? When will you visit Germany?

PM: Oh, I’d like to work with The Mondays too! Haha. Brilliant band, brilliant people. Treated me very well on the road and I respect that. I don’t really know what the future holds…I just live every day as it comes…for both sanity and financial reasons. Like most people I guess? My plan is to just enjoy my time here yknow…just have as many good times as I can with others too if possible. That’s my goal if I have one…not sure when I’ll be back in Germany but I love playing in your country…the audiences are amazing. But you can expect my next show to be amazing. I’ll give it my all. Same as the last one.


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