If you've ever been to a Light Asylum show, you know that half the experience is the theatrics of their performance. The group's record release show at Le Poisson Rouge last Thursday was evidence of this. I checked in with them for a Q&A before they took to the stage. Check it out! Their debut LP is available at OC, get it here
Benjamin Barron: What was your ﬁrst experience with music that you remember?
Shannon Funchess: Singing in a church choir.
Bruno Coviello: Listening to my cousin play the church organ at my uncle's wedding.
BB: Many have compared your music to that of Grace Jones, Joy Division, and Depeche Mode, among others. Who or what inﬂuences your music?
Light Asylum: Free clothes, alcohol, hotels, and airplane ﬂights.
BB: How has New York affected your sound?
LA: There are so many different cultures, subcultures, communities, and genres to be inspired by.
BB: Whatʼs your favorite sound?
LA: White/Pink noise.
BB: You've been playing together since 2009. How do you think your sound has evolved over time?
SF: The sound has gotten more focused, if anything. For one set of shows, we wanted to write all-new material. We had ﬁve days to write a 20-minute set. In those ﬁve days, we wrote the core for "Shallow Tears," "Dark Allies," and "A Certain Person," and we performed them all for the first time that weekend. We also did a cover of Joy Division's "Dead Souls." When we write and structure our songs, we've always maintained a desire to cover a spectrum of human emotions.
BB: You started recording after you'd been playing live for some time. How do you think this has affected your music?
Light Asylum: The recordings reﬂect the live show and vice versa.
BB: Whatʼs your dream collaboration?
LA: Jean Paul Gaultier
for LIGHT ASYLUM.
BB: Which album would you listen to for the rest of your life?
LA: Depeche Mode's Black Celebration.
BB: What's the best concert youʼve seen?
SF: Depeche Mode on the Black Celebration
tour in Denver, Colorado.
BC: The Massive Attack Mezzanine
tour in Miami, Florida.
BB: Where do you see yourself in a year?
LA: The South of France.
BB: What's your favorite place in the world?
LA: The beach.
BB: Who are you listening to now?
LA: Blood Orange, Blondes, Voyeurist, SOPHIE, Black Marble, House of La Dosha, Crush, Twin Gems, Friends, Sissy Nobi, and lots of remixes as well as dance and club tracks, since we DJ a lot.
BB: What do you do on your days off?
LA: Thrift shop and read books.
BB: Who do you most admire?
LA: Anyone who is passionate with compassion.
BB: Whatʼs your most treasured possession?
BB: Any phrase to live by?
LA: LOVE THE LIFE YOU LIVE. LIVE THE LIFE YOU LOVE.
Shop the Light Asylum LP, Light Asylum
Le Poisson Rouge