Joiners live "Interview: Steve Forrest", Mar'13

07.03.2013

It becomes a really difficult task to interview Mr Steve Forrest (1986) in spite of the good deal he gives off and how accessible he seems to be. But public requires him, and he logically enjoys the walkabout. Steve signs autographs, poses for photos and unfolds naturally with people. ‘Sorry mate. We’ll do the interview after the show. We’re running late!’, he apologizes loudly while he shakes me by my shoulders. And here we are, at midnight, in the top of The Joiners.

Question: Where does the idea of creating Planes come from?

Answer: It came quite organically. I’ve been playing music for a long time and doing my own acoustic stuff, and in 2010 I was touring with Placebo and we didn’t have an opening act, so the singer asked me to go and play my songs. But I didn’t want to do a solo thing, I wanted a band. My mates motivated me and gave me the confidence, I started piecing the band together and that’s how it started.

Q: Why did you call it ‘Planes’?

A: We were thinking about other bands and no one comes up with something clever or meaningful. My favourite bands had names that meant nothing, but their music described the word –like Blur, Nirvana, Placebo… We wanted something simple. I like ‘Planes’ for the way it looks. I travel around the world and planes can take me anywhere. I don’t know, I think if the music is good enough, it will give the word a new definition.

Q: What is your aim with this band?

A: I want Planes to become as big as possible. I’m looking for my future, and as a musician I believe it is important to play with as many people as you can. It doesn’t make you any less loyal. Placebo is for me the number one, and it always will be. But I just can’t do the one thing, I need to work all the time.

Q: Do you prefer being in the background playing the drums or taking the lead of the band?

A: I guess when I do one for too long I miss the other. To be honest, I love both ones. With Placebo is great because I can sit back and be the conductor. You don’t have to sing, you just go and rock, and in some ways it’s more fun. But with Planes you have to go there and show your passions, your emotions, say your words and play guitar. I have to say I don’t think I could really be happy with just the one. I need both in my life.

Q: What’s your opinion about yourselves?

A: I think, definitely, that Planes is a diamond in the rough. The longer we are together, the more we develop. I don’t believe there are many bands that sound like us. Of course you have influences, but it’s something different. Our goal is to create music that can relate to any demographics, music that you can love when you are fifteen and later when you are old and have kids. I think it’s what any decent musician tries to do: make it timeless.

Q: What about your body art?

A: A lot of people use the word ‘addictive’ when it comes to tattoos. ‘Addictive, addictive’… For me, it was never and addiction, it was a fascination. I want to cover my whole body on purpose from the beginning. And I want to prove you can have tattoos and be a good person with a brain, not necessarily a criminal.

Q: What can you tell me about the myth of sex, drugs and rock and roll?

A: I think it’s just as true as people think it is. When you are touring you live in a fairy-tale, and if you are on tour long enough, it becomes your reality. But I’m a simple kind of person. I love family, friends and good times… I think you should have a lot of sex, you should keep drugs to a minimum so that you can rock for longer. That’s a good quote.

Q: A group you admire.

A: Fleetwood Mac is a band that I’ve always really loved, but Death Cab for Cutie as well. And Radiohead needs to be on the top because they develop with each record and each record is different to the previous one. They are a modern day Pink Floyd. It maybe sounds weird to compare it but it’s true. I also love Dave Grohl.

Q: A perfect album.

A: OK Computer, going back to Radiohead, is a perfect record. Takk…, by Sigur Rós… perfect record! I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning, by Bright Eyes… perfect record! These are records that come together from beginning to end, it’s a journey. And Transatlanticism, by Death Cab for Cutie.

Q: Your favourite song.

A: ‘I will always love’, by a band called The Hollies. Every time I put it on, it makes me jolly.

Q: The song you most enjoy playing.

A: ‘Holes in my shoes’. It’s really fun and country and pop. I really enjoy singing it out.

Q: A present band that will leave a mark in the future.

A: I think someone like Jake Bugg has a really good chance. I hope. But you know, nowadays it’s hard to tell. Bands like Alt-J… its records are amazing, but it depends on the follower.

Q: An overrated band.

A: Lana del Rey. No question. Overrated. Easy. Sorry.

Q: A genre you hate.

A: Anything from X–Factor, Pop Idol, American Idol… If that is a genre, that type of that world, I despise. People can sing doesn’t mean they should be doing that for a career. It slaps the face of every musician that spends every day working for nothing to get in. I really hate that. One thing I wish I could really kill is fucking X–Factor. You can put that as headline, go on: ‘I would kill X–Factor if it was a person’.

Q: An anecdote.

A: One of the most random was I got bronchitis in South Korea and I ended up travelling around and finding a free clinic. Then I was like in this hospital and no one spoke English, it was all Korean, and I finally like ended up in this dark room, in this dodgy place with this big needle and the nurse stuck it in my arse and she gave me this jab and… It was one of those moments when you think: ‘Why am I here?’.

Q: An advice for new bands

A: Believe in what you do more than anybody could possibly tell you. If you feel it in your belly, in your heart, go for it. That’s what I did. I came from nothing. And be honest with yourself. You have to listen to your music and be harsh. It’s not feelings time, it’s writing time. And you have to wonder: ‘Is this really doing something different? Am I really doing everything I can for this part, for this song, for this record? Because I want to be a professional musician. I wanna stand out’.

Q: What does coming to The Joiners mean for you?

A: The Joiners is really, really cool. This is my first time here and the sound was great and people were really good. I would love to come back!

Q: Is there anything else you want to ask yourself?

A: I don’t know. I suppose I ask myself enough questions everyday.