The twilight months of 2016 have been an endlessly busy time for progressive rockers Anathema. Not only did Saturday, 19th November see the Liverpool five-piece play the biggest show of their career to date by supporting metal titans Opeth at London’s Wembley Arena, but they also embarked on a week-long, headlining tour across the UK (during which they played a two-hour set each night), all while preparing for their upcoming eleventh album, which is due in 2017.
Before his band’s show at Southampton’s Engine Rooms, Anathema’s singer, guitarist and co-founder Vincent Cavanagh sits down with Metal Wani’s Matt Mills to talk about all this and more, including the problem with today’s rock n’ roll scene, how he wrote a new song in a dream and his plans to record a full-length soundtrack. Here are some of the excerpts from the interview:
It must be an absolutely fantastic time to be in Anathema right now. You’ve got the Opeth show coming up, you’re playing stuff from the new album, you’re on-tour right now. Does it feel especially busy at the moment?
Vincent: “Yeah it does. It’s almost like I wish I was in two places at once. I actually wish I was in the studio. I’ve got a studio in London where I’ve been making demos for the album for the last few months. Going out on the road is kinda necessary to tighten the songs up live and to get that reaction from the audience, you get a good indication of a song’s heading when you play it to an audience. So it’s all good. I recognize that it’s a valid exercise and it’s probably necessary, but secretly, I wish I was in the studio. But I’m going to be there tomorrow, so it’s OK.”
So the album itself is still in the demo stages?
Vincent: “Yeah, we’re gonna start recording it on the 1st December. So the next couple of weeks re going to be frantic trying to finish it all off. Because we’re working with a producer now who… just working with him is just kicking everybody’s ass a little bit to be way more prepared than we usually are. But I’m confident in it: we’ll pull it off.”
Do you have a rough schedule in-mind for after recording December?
Vincent: “We’re doing ten days in a studio in Ireland and then we’ll do another ten days in a studio in Glasgow. And then in January, we’ll have a break for the festive season, then come back in January, to Scotland, and finish of anything that’s outstanding, then mix it. So I guess that means a May release date. It’s going to be on Kscope again. We’ll do some festivals next summer, but at the moment we don’t have any gigs booked after this one, tonight. What I want to do once the next album’s mixed, I actually want to keep the studio on and just keep writing. Because I think we’ve got, certainly, enough ideas to start a new project immediately. I want to keep the flow going. I think we could do a soundtrack next.”
Would you cite Opeth as an influence, either personally or musically?
Vincent: “No, not really. We don’t really listen to our peers in music, we never have. We don’t listen to any of the bands in our scene. I mean they’re really nice guys and good friends of ours, we’ve known them for many years now, they’re a great band to tour with and there’s a lot of mutual respect there. I just don’t listen to their stuff, I never have really. I listen to Bob Dylan religiously, the Beatles, I listen a lot to electronic music, a lot of soundtracks and instrumentals. Usually, individuals that make music; I don’t really listen to bands. It’s more a single person that makes music, really.”
Stream The Entire Interview Below: