Four years after they released their album Apocalipstick, The Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer have taken that record in a new direction with new interpretations, titled Post-Apocalipstick. The first re-imagined single, “Forever Fool” is accompanied by a fantastic video directed by Peter Ricq. We had a chat with Shawn Hall and Matthew Rogers to discuss the strangeness of not playing shows, the desire to re-visit their record, and what they’d be doing if they weren’t musicians.
From The Strait: The last time we saw you live was about three years ago at The Casbah in Hamilton – considering we’re in a very different time right now, how strange is it to not be playing live shows?
Shawn Hall: For me it’s not strange, it’s way past that. It’s heartbreaking, it’s trying to normalize a life without social intimacy and feeling empty or deeply sad at many points of the day or week. I, like so many others spent a good chunk of my life fuelled by the live engagement from good people, town, to town, bar to bar, station to station. This sucks!
FTS: What made you want to create a re-imagining of Apockalipstick?
Matthew Rogers: The desire to stretch out even further from our blues/roots roots and dig into some wilder, more experimental, more cinematic production styles. We aimed to capture some of the psychedelic elements of our live show and incorporate them.
FTS: The video for “Forever Fool” is a psychedelic ride with some great throwback elements – will all three videos directed by Peter Ricq have a similar feel?
Shawn Hall: Not at all, Peter is a wild creator of the day and night. His curiosities seem to know no bounds, and one of his many gifts is to make these perversions into the darkness palatable for the general public and operational on a multitude of levels no matter your age.
FTS: Who were your musical influences growing up, and how do they differ from your current ones?
Matthew Rogers: Then – Pink Floyd. Now – Pink Floyd.
But seriously it is interesting to see which influences stick around for a lifetime. For me it’s Floyd, Zeppelin, The Beatles. For Shawn I’m sure it’s Bob Marley and Stevie Wonder. Our influences and musical sensibilities are constantly changing, and ain’t that the greatest thing about music – your life can veer in any direction and it’s there to take you on whatever ride you want. Personally my influences have started diverging into more cinematic and atmospheric styles. Currently I’m listening to a lot more ambient artists like Brian Eno and Alessandro Cortini because I find I’m craving something that helps me relax and daydream.
FTS: If you weren’t making music, what would you be doing right now?
Shawn Hall: Renovating & Opening an old Brick and Mortar Clothing shop, oh wait a minute I just did…lol. Honestly, If I didn’t do that, and I wasn’t able to participate in the arts i would be working in design, or building things with my hands. Stuff with wood perhaps, or maybe working in a kitchen where the humour and stress levels are a plenty & enough to remind me of being back on the road with old friends.
Check out the video for “Forever Fool”!