The Bombpops – Gitarristin Jen im Interview
Poli & Jen von den Bombpops sprechen im langen Interview über ihre neue Platte „Death in Venice Beach“. Was die Band über den kommenden Silberlings so alles erzählt, dass findet ihr nur bei uns heraus.
Auf ein Wort mit Poli & Jen
You are back with a new record and in just some minutes your whole colored vinyl stock at the Fat Wreck Store and EU store was sold out. Did you know that? And do you care that people are buying your stuff and selling it for high prices on the internet?
Jen: We had heard that it was all sold out in a short period of time. That’s incredible to us! It sucks that people take it and turn it around so fast but we can’t control that, so there’s no use getting mad about it.
Will you offer a tour vinyl for your upcoming shows?
Jen: We’ll have vinyl, of course. Not sure that we’ll have any special tour colors but we’ll definitely have vinyl!
I saw that Punk in Drublic with NOFX will come again to Europe. This time without you. I was wondering why because you got a new record out. Are there any plans that you will come back to Europe?
Jen: We’d love touring Europe and we loved playing those Punk in Drublic shows last year, they were some of the best shows we ever played. We will always come back to play Europe, so stay tuned!
Let’s come to your record. I know this is the most boring question but why did you titled the new record with „Death in Venice Beach“? Can you tell us the story behind it?
Jen: It’s actually the least boring question so far! 😉
It’s a reference to the book “Death in Venice” written by German author, Thomas Mann. It’s about the nature of art and how artists are naturally inclined to fall into the abyss when inspiration strikes. It’s about the moments in which art completely consumes the artist. It’s about how sometimes when an artist sees beauty, they then begin to see it everywhere. It can’t be unseen. It becomes their muse, it inspires them to create but it can also induce mania. While mania can cause an artist to create some of their best work, it can inevitably drive the artist mad. In the end you die by the hand of beauty, that type of thing! Heavy.
I read it after we finished the album and it struck me hard. We also have quite a bit of California references in our songs, so spinning the title of this book to reflect that aspect, seemed like a perfect fit.
I think, the lyrics are more personal, deeper and somehow darker. It seems that 2019/2018 wasn’t not always a good year for you right?
Poli: Ya know, good times aren’t ALWAYS bad. I think diving into some of these deeper feelings and expressing them is something we definitely did on this record. I struggled with drinking quite a bit the last couple of years and had a lot of self realization going on.
Jen: 2019 was dark for me, so writing my songs for this record was a complete escape from reality. I read a lot, I watched a lot of movies to escape. I hid a lot of what I was going through in these stories and intertwined them with other forms of art that spoke to me.
I was blown away that Poli is opening her heart about her disease in „Double Arrows Down“. She also states that „I’m so tired of explaining it“. So I want to ask how the band or the music is helping her ?
Poli: It feels great to open up about this disease! Music and the band help me tremendously. I’m stoked to get this song out there and actually get the conversation going! Awareness is so important and I believe this is a step in the right direction. My band mates and my friends are all here as a unit to help and that’s a good feeling.
I really like the lyrics in „Notre Dame“ and for me is „Like the flames to Notre Dame, nothing sacred here is safe“ the best sentence of the year so far. For me it is a metaphor for that Karma is sometimes a bitch and not caring about personal circumstances and why should it care at all when a sacred place like a church is burning down. Do you remember the time frame when you wrote down that sentence?
Jen: Thank you! It’s only January so we have time for a lot of other sentences to become the best sentence of the year but that’s a wonderful compliment, I’ll go ahead and take it!
This is an interesting view on that sentence and I’m happy to know it means something so true and valid to someone else. I never thought of it that way myself but I love how you interpreted it and I can honestly say that I agree with you.
For me, the whole song is a metaphor to a relationship in which I’ve felt like I had known someone before I ever met them, like I’ve known them in a past life, that our souls were always connected. It’s a nod to the idea that we’re all victims of circumstance, time and space. It’s unexplainable, fate is fate, nothing is safe including the most sacred of places. I wanted to write a song with that idea in mind. The day Notre Dame caught fire, I came home from work and saw it on the news. I immediately sat down and wrote the song. It was one of the quickest songs I ever wrote. The imagery of a centuries old cathedral up in flames became the perfect imagery for the metaphor to come to life.
In „House on Fire“ you are talking about that Fat Mike wears latex during foreplay. When you sent him your CD, did he recognize his name? In case yes, what did he say? BTW, that song sounds like a wild party.
Poli: He hated it and the party was lame.
I talked about a couple of songs. Is there a special song for you which should get some more attention? If yes, can you drop one and tell us the meaning behind it?
Poli: Southbound Stranger, the last track on the record, is about the young woman they called “Beautiful Stranger”. She checked into Hotel Del Coronado on Coronado Island in San Diego and mysteriously met her fate in 1892. She is believed to haunt the hotel, especially in room 3327 where she stayed. My husband and I got the opportunity to stay in that room (which was unreal and spooky!) and I was inspired to write the song that night. The story fascinates me. Look it up!
Jen: Blood Pact – Last year I took a road trip with a friend of mine and we ended up driving all over Southern California. The sun was going down, we were going out into the desert, it was deranged in a way but it was romance. We made a joke about how it was some Natural Born Killers type thing we had going on. I started writing the song when I got home from the trip. Then I watched the movie while we were in the van on tour a few months later, it’d been a long time since I’d first seen it, and I finished the lyrics to the song with some actual lines from the movie as well as imagery from the movie. It became more about the movie than the actual experience that inspired it but I like having that person disguised in the song as well.
I like the cover design of your new record. Who is the artist and what should the artwork express?
Jen: Mark deSalvo! He is a legend. He painted the cover to Lagwagon’s “Let’s Talk about Feelings,” NOFX’s “Heavy Petting Zoo,” No Use for a Name’s “Making Friends” and a TON of other iconic punk rock album art. The scene he painted is a tribute to the Los Angeles aesthetic that inspired quite a few songs and it ties into the music video for ‘Notre Dame’ as well as other visuals you’ll see from us in the future. “Death in Venice Beach” is all part of a bigger picture for us.
Cover & Tracklist
1. Dearly Departed
2. Double Arrows Down
3. Zero Remorse
4. Notre Dame
5. Sad to Me
6. Can’t Come Clean
7. Blood Pact
8. In the Doghouse
9. 13 Stories Down
10. Radio Silence
11. House on Fire
12. Southbound Stranger
The Bombpops bei uns im Interview
Im Mai 2019 tourte die Band in Europa und wir trafen die vier für einen netten Plausch.