17 Nov
Since 2006, the band has been fine-tuning new material and is ready to embark on a US tour...


Ask me to name check a pioneering British band and Nitzer Ebb would definitely come to mind. They’ve had a special place on my music shelf right alongside other icons like Front 242, Bauhaus, Kraftwerk and Cabaret Voltaire for a while now. Though their inception traces back to the early ’80s, I’ll admit it was 1987’s “Join in the Chant” on Mute Records that sucked me in. That was kinda their claim to fame…later touring with Depeche Mode for their “Music for the Masses” Tour. Seriously, though, that cut…the rawness, the darkness, Douglas McCarthy’s screeching vocals—it still makes me want to throw a hand in the air, jump around and punch someone in the face every time I hear it.

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from Nitzer Ebb. Since 2006, the band has been fine-tuning new material and is ready to embark on a US tour, tonight being the kick off LA date. They’ll also be touring (Europe) again with old pals Depeche Mode in early 2010. McCarthy currently resides in LA and we run into each other from time to time so I cornered him and threw out a few questions. Interview after the jump…

You’ve been recording this album with Bon since 2005, correct? How has the process been…was it like getting back into the studio with an old friend? What were the challenges?
I know, right? I thought all this technology expedited the whole album process…well we actually started working on new music during the “reunion tour” of 2006. Having not seen each other for 10 years there was an amazing re-connection where we, as corny as it sounds, found that we had “unfinished business” with music. I love a lot of new electronic music and had in fact been developing that with Terence Fixmer in the form of Fixmer / Mccarthy, but working with Bon is, and always will be, a unique experience. So, the surprising thing was that we worked almost exclusively with “real” instruments to write the tracks and then, as it were, transfer that approach to an analogue and then digital realm. It sounds long winded but we pretty much wrote a track a day for a month or so then focused on the most promising songs to develop the album. It was a really organic—I fucking hate hippies, so this hard to say—soothing experience.

Has living in Los Angeles affected the Nitzer Ebb sound at all?
Oh, for sure. We love LA. Jason, NE’s drummer is a native, but bon and myself have a long history with the place too. There is something about this town that draws you in creatively—not always to a positive end—and as absurd as it sounds, LA has become our natural home. There is something in the adversity of dealing with SO many assholes that makes you more determined. That and it’s sunny a lot.

I’m pretty sure you were telling me that you guys are going to release the new album yourself, digitally too, yes? Also, is it all done, mixed, etc…ready to go?
Yeah, we were at a party so I may have been EXTREMELY positive, but yeah that’s what we are doing. We have a partner who has many years in the business and we are doing the whole “joint venture” thing. What’s funny is that when we were all secure signed to Geffen and Mute it looked like such a shady deal to put stuff out yourself, like you couldn’t get a deal so this is what you HAD to do, and now you’re a fucking idiot to NOT do it this way. The industry is SO screwed, honestly the less you have to do with these idiots the better.

The upcoming tour is in support of the album, yes?
Yeah, Industrial Complex is the new album, and we are really happy. As I was touching on before, the record industry is a mess and as with everyone we are finding that some of the new delivery systems are TV shows, movies and video games. So we have pretty much “pre-released” on NCIS, Fringe, Saw, Tony Hawk Ride, etc. and that IS the vehicle for music, NOT record companies, as we all knew them. The next job for us, and any other band, is to tour the shit out of our album, which we enjoy, and above all allows us to connect with the people that actually give a shit as much as we do.

What can fans expect on this tour? Classic Nitzer Ebb?
Oh yeah. We are going to rotate material, but essentially there will be a, “classic” Nitzer Ebb set in every town we play. HYDRATE people, HYDRATE.

You’re going on tour with Depeche Mode in 2010?
The DM tour almost came out of the blue. We had Martin Gore sing backing vocals on the track “Once You Say” for the new album because we were looking for a ballsy female black gospel singer so Mart came straight to mind. Seriously that’s what we thought. We have remained friends with the boys since first signing to Mute in the Eighties, and we actually thought of the mode tour in the states as a great way for us to release the new album, but things were still shaping up on the business side for us so that ship sailed as it where. Then, once we knew a release date—Feb. 2010—it seemed unsightly that we didn’t approach them to see if it was possible to ride their golden coat tails around Europe once more—we last supported them in Europe 22 years ago…it’s going to be magical.

How’s the Show Cave Night Gallery going?
I am vicariously connected with that space through my adorable best friend and lover Hazel Hill. It is about to re-open in Eagle Rock with Spread Eagle, a name I conjured up based on a “strip pub” that was a melancholic hop, skip and a jump away from an apartment I had in Shoreditch, East London…please don’t ask me the details I beg of you…unless you’ve plied me with whiskey…no, no, please…

2 Responses to “Nitzer Ebb US Tour”

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  2. […] Eine weitere Nitzer Ebb Myspace Seite Zur Industrial Complex Microsite Nitzer Ebb Tourimpressionen Interview mit Douglas McCarthy Video: Nitzer Ebb – Murderous (live 2008) auf Youtube Kommentare […]

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