VANITY BLVD

vanity blvdI was supposed to have interviewed VANITY BLVD when they released their latest album but then their label went belly up and it all fell through. But that was then. Anders Ekdahl ©2016

As there might be those not familiar with your band a short introduction might be in order?
-Vanity BLVD are a female fronted hardrocking band from Sweden. We have released two fullength albums and toured around Sweden and Europe. We are really inspired by the 70´s and 80´s rocknroll.

Everything looked so good for you guys a couple of years back but the the label went belly up. How frustrating is it to start anew looking for a new label and then promote an album that really soulf be your third?
Anna – Of course it would have been a lot easier working with good people who could have got us in the right direction right from the start.
We have met a lot of assholes during our career who did not do what they were expected to.
Vanity BLVD are a really hardworking band and we do mostly all the stuff by our own with no help from others.
We don’t have a booking agency or a manager helping us because it usually ends up in nothing being done. We have learned a lot from being fooled, if you want something really bad. Do it yourself!
The most frustrating part is that everything takes a lot more time then we would like it to. But we are working on a third album at the moment and we are very targeted in our work.

What I had an awful hard time handling with the hair bands of the 80s was their lyrics. How important are they to you guys?
Pete – I don’t need a poem but I like when the lyrics say something. I’m not a big fan of lyrics about sex, drugs and rock n roll. Of course I love a lot of them songs from the 80´s but it’s not the kind of lyrics I would write if I would write lyrics.
Anna -The lyrics in a song means a lot to me. When I write I usually write out of my own experiences in life, but it could also be about a person or subject I’m inspired by.
I usually visualise each songs as a motion picture right before my eyes when I write.

No image is still an image. How do you view the importance of having an image?
Pete – Its is kind of important to have an image that goes well with your music but I don’t think you have to over do it like many bands do or did in the past but yes you need to look what you play otherwise there is a confusion. You see something when you listen to the album, at least you can picture how a band looks and when you see them live with an image that isn’t anywhere close to rock n roll you just don’t get the pieces to fit and might lose interest in what you are listening to.

I love a really cool album cover. What attitude do you have towards the art work and lay out of your records?
Anna- We wanted the albums artwork to go hand in hand with the music of the album. We worked really close with the guy who did the artwork on wicked temptation, Roger Teilmann, and we are really happy with how it turned out. We wanted to catch that dirty and mysterious vibe that the album has.
We found this really old abandoned lime works which were perfect for the photo shoots. Some photo shoots were kinda dangerous because we had to climb up in the top of the limeworks where everything were really dilapidated and we had to watch every step we took so we would not fall down, but it was totally worth it.

I use digital download as a compliment but I really think it will in the long run kill music because nobody will buy it and nobody will go out and see bands live. What are your thoughts on this?
Pete – The live scene has gone down a lot the past 10 years, there are so many bands struggling to make their way up but the venues are few but there is loads of bands that deserves to be seen live.
Digital downloads is apparently the way to go these days, too bad because there is a special feeling with having a physical copy in your hand with a nice booklet and stuff.
I really don’t understand the business today? I mean, what’s up with only release singles and not even write your own songs?
The bands that writes their own music and play all instruments on the albums don’t get the proper promotion for their hard work but the solo singers who sings with only backing tracks is promoted like hell all over the world. All respect to the songwriters and producers who writes all worldwide hits of course.

As a band that tours, how easy is it to set up a tour today? How much DIY is there to it?
Pete – We are a touring band and we mainly do everything by ourselves or together with another band. All from booking shows at venues and clubs to book hotels, cars, busses, flights etc…..
Of course we have some help at some tours but most part is DIY.

If you had your dream come true what would the stage look like when you play live?
Anna – I would like to have the stage set in the vibe of the album, because I’m really into that theatrical and dramatic performance. I would like the audience to have a mind blowing experience when they see us. Something they would take with them and never forget about.
Pete – I would go back to the mid 80´s, think Iron maiden, Bon Jovi. A big arena stage, not just a plain flat stage but a big podium for the drums, loads of cabinets. A classic rock stage with podiums to climb and a big light show.

Is it cooler to play in small clubs and venues compared to on a festival stage? Do you feed on the energy you get from a club crowd?
Anna – It’s always fun to play whether its on a huge festival stage or in a small club. But I must say that I love a good party crowd so the coolest thing is to play in front of fans that really
enjoying themselves and showing their support. –

What does the future hold?
-More touring and more albums to be made. We have only started our journey. Keep updated on our website: http://www.vanityblvd.com or on facebook.

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