Kaiser Chiefs chat One Direction and make us LOL

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13 August 2012

We chatted to Simon from the Kaiser Chiefs about One Direction, music being devalued and wet festival fashion...


Are you enjoying the summer festivals despite the rubbish weather?

I am currently waiting around before playing at a festival in Istanbul. there's no sign of rubbish weather here. I think festival season is when our band really peaks. Everybody knows our tunes and Ricky is a machine at getting the crowd into having a good time no matter what the weather.

Do you have any fashion tips for the rain? (we’re finding ourselves rather soggy)
Just have to get involved. Embrace the inner hiker.
Which acts have you managed to catch on stage this summer that have made you tap your toes?
This year we managed to be at Coachella for the whole weekend so we got to see a lot of the bands there. My personal highlight was At The Drive-In, followed by Snoop and Dre. i even high fived a stranger.
There’s a whole new swathe of bands – more specifically boybands – on their way up. Are you a One Direction fan?
I am a 34-year-old male in a guitar band and so I think a lot of the new music is not really aimed at me. I like going to see little gigs in dodgy venues, and there's still a few good new guitar bands out there, even if no-one is listening.
What do you make of the strong force of female solo artists like Jessie J, Rihanna and Adele?
See above I reckon.
What still drives you guys to make music these days?
Watching 50,000 people jump up and down in a field singing your songs is quite a buzz, but this question always strikes me as odd. Why does anyone do anything. because we like it mainly. And if we don't play for a while we all go a bit insane.

How do you feel the music industry has changed since you first emerged on the scene?
It doesn't seems that long since we started but in that time everything has changed. Mainly the impact of the internet and downloads of course. When we started there was no Facebook or Twitter. iTunes was absolutely tiny and the first iPods were being suspiciously prodded. I love technology and am sat in my hotel room with a laptop and iPad and iPhone and probably some other bits so i can't really complain too much. But i think music has been gradually devalued. People think more and more it's something they should get for free and can get it so why should they pay. With the last record we tried to do something interesting to get people involved by having their own bespoke album and therefore feeling some ownership of it. i think that's the thing that's changed the most. Music has become a file on a computer, which isn't how i feel about it.

Florence has just had to pull out of a load of gigs because of a sore vocal chord, Adele had problems previously. Do you think acts today are being worked too hard?

There's a lot of travelling but it couldn't really be described as hard work. Being a welder on an oil rig. that's a tough job. We've had everything from food poisoning to broken bones but we try to never cancel gigs unless we absolutely can't do it.

You’ve recently got involved with Right to Play and Xbox, can you tell us a little bit about what you’re doing with them?
I think our official title is right to play ambassadors. Xbox asked us if we'd like to get involved in a couple of events they were doing with Right to Play. We were all into the idea of what Right to Play does and it seemed good for us to get involved and help them raise some money and exposure. Ricky and Peanut did the fun run the other night on Kinect which Xbox donated money to the charity for everybody who took part. Seemed like an easy way for everyone involved to benefit and not hard work. We're doing a little gig for it all in a couple of weeks.

Kaiser Chiefs are ambassadors for Xbox’s Summer Stadium campaign - a fundraising initiative aimed to support Microsoft’s charity partner, international children’s sport and play charity Right To Play. Find out more: http://www.xbox.com/en-GB/live/summer-stadium/right-to-play

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