“Can our worst mistakes ever truly be atoned for?” | Interview with Cassels

Ahem. If we had to describe London-based duo and brothers’ latest release Mr Henderson Coughs laconically, it would be easy. The 1-semitone sliding song. Raw energy, straight to your face. Dust. And smoke.

Read our interview below.

Describe your sound in three words please!

Alternative Guitar Music

Talk to us about your forthcoming album A Gut Feeling,. What is the main concept behind it?

I set myself the brief of writing third person narratives for this album, as I thought it offered a nice way of sneaking quite personal things into the songs without being explicitly autobiographical. All the songs tell a story and focus on a central character or characters, apart from the opener. This is the only song written in the first person and introduces the idea of an unreliable narrator at the start of the record, hence undermining the veracity of all the stories that follow. I wanted to introduce this element of doubt to hopefully indicate the stories themselves shouldn’t be taken too literally, and instead encourage people to focus more on the themes of the record. In fact, all of the songs are inspired by real-life experiences to varying degrees, but that’s kind of beside the point.

What was the inspiration and motivation for your very intriguing lead single Mr Henderson Coughs?

As mentioned above, this song is somewhat inspired by a real incident, though obviously it’s been hugely embellished and exaggerated for dramatic effect. At the song’s core the karmic dilemma faced by the titular character: Can our worst mistakes ever truly be atoned for? Is there any rhyme, reason, or equilibrium in the universe, or is there only random chaos? Guilt is very much at the centre of this song.

Best punk song you wish you had written yourselves?

Not sure if it’s an out and out ‘punk’ song, but probably ‘Teeth Like God’s Shoeshine’ by Modest Mouse.

Is London’s music scene bouncing back after the pandemic? Is there something you are really looking forward to?

I’d say so yeah. Gigs are starting to happen again, and thankfully there’s still loads of great venues in London for bands to play in – many of which ran successful crowd funders during the pandemic. We’re both going to see a band called Cagework this week who I’d highly recommend.

Is there an album that caught your interest recently?

The new Iceage album, ‘Seek Shelter’. Yet to release a bad record in my opinion.

What is missing from our era in terms of culture and music? And what do you like about it?

I think artists of all disciplines are now expected to market themselves to an unhealthy degree. With the advent of social media, a band is now a brand; the commodification of art has accelerated, the irony being it’s now much, much harder to make a living as an artist or musician. On the flipside, I’d like to think this may have deterred some people from getting into music for the wrong reasons. If you’re only interested in getting laid, high, and/or rich, being in a band is now an extremely inefficient way of doing this.

Tell us something about you that has nothing to do with music!

My favourite colour is grey.

Thank you!

Follow our Spotify Playlist Amplify Eclectic feat. Cassels

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