Jane Weaver on Seances and Desert Islands
Jane Weaver is out today with The Architect, an EP of songs that go hand-in-hand with her latest LP, the trippy, nature-infused Modern Kosmology.
Modern Kosmology is Weaver’s ninth album under her own name, previously performing with Brit-pop band Kill Laura and the folky Misty Dixon. Despite making music for decades, Weaver first gained significant critical acclaim with 2014′s The Silver Globe, an album that sets the scene for the British musician’s recent psychy, krauty offerings.
TIDAL spoke with Weaver before the EP’s release about the séance-obsessed artist who inspired her, her pysch-rock leanings and escaping to an island to create.
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On being influenced by a séance-obsessed visual artist… I stumbled across Hilma af Klint — I didn’t know anything about her. But I really found inspiration from her story and her process and the way she worked. She had a group called ‘The Five,’ which were five women she worked with, and they would all take part in these spiritualist séances and channel energy. Then she would paint for days, until collapse. That whole story became a bit of a muse for me. Stumbling across her story helped me open my eyes, really. As a musician, you get bogged down with thinking about creating as a musician, and I just thought I should think about how other people create and look at what they do. Because it’s the place to be free, isn’t it? If you can’t be free in the creative world, where can you be?
On pysch as an influence… When I was a teenager, I grew up in a small town outside of Liverpool, and there were gangs of hippies and bikers and interesting people who had more interesting records — a lot of psych music, a lot of music like Hawkwind, Pink Floyd, heavy bands like Slayer. So I’ve grown up with that sort of heavy music, really. As a musician, I’ve done a few albums before, and it was just me and a guitar and I got really bored with it. The place to go was heavier, really, and more experimental. Those were my influences when I was younger, and I embraced them. I know that sound, I know that production. It was kind of easy, really.
On landscapes and music… Sometimes when I get an idea for a song, it’s a full song, but sometimes it’s little vignettes or pictures. I went to the Isle of Eigg in Scotland to do a gig and that’s quite a powerful place. It’s in the middle of the ocean, the weather’s terrible and there’s only one ferry a day, so if you get stuck, you can’t come back. It was quite a dramatic setting, and it inspired me, being on the island.
I [also] went to the island of Anglesey, which is off the coast of Wales — that used to be where the druids were before the Roman invasion. So that has quite a powerful energy about it, because it’s in the middle of the sea. The vision I had for the songs was this kind of made-up landscape, and I just got comfortable being there to get the ideas out.
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