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Quickfire Questions #14: Romily Alice of Japanese Voyeurs

By on Monday, 25th July 2011 at 12:00 pm

London’s Japanese Voyeurs released their debut album, ‘Yolk’, earlier this month. It’s described on their press sheets as “filthy loud”, which is definitely a first, I think. We were lucky to have lead vocalist/guitarist Romily Alice answer our Quickfire Questions, including her fond remembrance of hearing a particular album on vinyl over and over again, including the noise of the needle. Intrigued? Read on…

1. What song is your earliest musical memory?
My Dad playing gypsy songs on the fiddle. There was a lot of music in my house when I was growing up, as my Dad is a wonderful classical violinist.

2. What was your favourite song as a child?
Probably the Beatles’ ‘Maxwell’s Silver Hammer’, although I really don’t like the song now!

3. What song makes you laugh?
I don’t know whether it’s a massive personality flaw, but I don’t find music funny. I like music to be moving in some more visceral way, make me sad or angry or want to break things; funny isn’t really something that happens to me when I listen to music.

4. What song makes you cry?
Billy Joel’s ‘Vienna’. Haha, I can’t believe how unrock all my song choices are…

5. What song reminds you of the first time you fell in love?
The whole of Van Morrison’s ‘Astral Weeks’ on vinyl, complete with the sound of the needle going round and round when you can’t be bothered to get up out of bed and turn the record over.

6. What song makes you think of being upset/angry?
The whole of the first Nirvana record reminds me of being 12/13, discovering heavy music and trying to grow up. Feeling pretty frustrated at being a kid and living at home and not being able to make my own choices.

7. Which song (any song written in the last century) do you wish you’d written yourself?
Bruce Springsteen’s ‘I’m on Fire’. Its so simple and short but that’s what makes it such a beautiful song. Its that kind of uncomplicated structure and production that requires really brilliant songwriting.

8. Who is your favourite writr? (This can be a songwriter or ANY kind of writer.)
Its a toss up between Alan Moore, Mervyn Peake, Harmony Korine, Mikhail Bulgakov and Salman Rushdie. I couldn’t chose between them.

9. If you hadn’t become a singer/musician/songwriter/etc., what job do you think you’d be doing right now?
I would’ve loved to be a ballerina; I still love the ballet. If music failed now though I’d still make sure I did something where I could make things: art or writing, something like that.

10. If God said you were allowed to bring only one album with you to Heaven, which would it be and why?
I don’t think I’m going to heaven!

Below, you can watch the band’s video for the song ‘Cry Baby’. ‘Yolk’ is available now.



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