Audrey Horne is a hard rock/post-grunge band from Bergen, Norway. Taking their name from Sherilyn Fenn’s character in the cult TV series Twin Peaks – the band have steadily made a name for themselves since their 2005 debut, “No Hay Banda”. On the back of their most recent release, Youngblood – we sat down with vocalist Toschie to talk about the latest album, touring Europe and why Youngblood means no turning back for the band.
By Mark Plummer
Your new album was just released on February 4th – did the writing process for this differ in any way from your previous releases?
Yes, very much so. Normally when we write songs Thomas and Ice Dale write most of the music at their place, and make sketchy demos of them, then I come in and write melody lines, harmonies and lyrics. But this time we wanted an album that had more energy, and was closer to what we are as a live band, so we decided to plug in our gear, and write everything in our rehearsal studio as a band. This way a lot more influences were put into the proses, and I think this is the main reason for why we have made an album that sounds a bit different from our previous once.
A lot of bands always comment on how their new releases are some of their finest work, do you feel that the release of Youngblood is a pivotal step forward for the band and what direction do you want it to take you in?
Definitely. After having written the songs this way, and recording the album as live as possible, and not layer by layer as we have done before, we pretty much looked at each other and said “There is no going back after this”. It was just so much more satisfactory to do it this way for all of us. And I think everyone gets a closer ownership feeling to it as well.
What were some of your biggest influences when writing Youngblood?
Well, as you probably can tell, some of the great bands we grew up listening to : Kiss, Thin Lizzy, Van Halen, Rainbow, Iron Maiden etc. But also a lot of newer bands like Kvelertak, Mastodon, Hellacopters and Alice in chains. And of course a lot of bands that are not that obvious : Fleetwood Mac, The Police and so on.
How did Audrey Horne come together? From what I can see you were all in different bands over the years.
We were a bunch of guys who got together to do something different from the bands we were in at the time. We started out as a side project, but after having written some songs and played together for a while, we realized that this was too good and too fun to leave it at that – so we quickly grew into a more full time commitment. And now it has been 10 years and 5 releases.
Were you all fans of the ABC series Twin Peaks that features the character Audrey Horne, or is it a happy coincidence that your band has the same name?
It is not a coincidence. I used to be in a band called “Sylvia Wane”, which was a fictional woman’s name. At the time some of us were watching Twin Peaks, and so this name came up as a suggestion. We thought it was fitting for our music at the time, and it was also a name most people were familiar with, though in another context, and so we decided to call ourselves Audrey Horne. We are still quite happy with the name.
You’re touring through Europe in March, are there any countries or cities that you can’t wait to play, any crowds in-particular that really get you buzzing?
London has always been good to us, and most cities in Germany, so we are really looking forward to those, and also we are doing a festival called Sweden Rock Festival, that we have been wanting to do for years, so that will also be good.
Being a Norwegian band, does writing songs in English pose any difficulties rather than your native language?
No, not really. English is a much richer language, and so there are so many more ways to say one thing, than it is in Norwegian.
You’ve included a few bonus tracks which if left off, would make Youngblood ten tracks long. A lot of bands seem to be making albums shorter rather than longer. Do you feel that this benefits the listener in not over-doing their experience?
Yeah I think so. You should have some really strong material to keep people interested through 17 songs. I think a lot of bands would benefit from being more selective when it comes to choosing material for their albums. Kill your darlings ! Even though you have written 17 songs, does not mean they all have to be on it.
Any plans to take the band out to places like the US or Australia?
We do have some plans, but nothing confirmed, and not on this side of the summer. We have played, and recorded in the States before, and found that extremely satisfying for us, but we have never been down under, so we would off course love to go there.
Other than your tour in March, what else does 2013 hold for Audrey Horne?
We are doing a one off show at the garage in London on the 27th of February, and then we are planning a UK tour in, hopefully , late April. Apart from that we are doing a bunch of festivals all over Europe.
Many thanks to Toschie for taking the time to chat to us. For more information about upcoming tour dates, check out: http://www.audreyhornemusic.com