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Interview with Cut The Red Wire.
This week I interviewed Andy Bird of Cut the Red Wire. Andy, as Cut the Red Wire, creates some great electronic pop music. His live shows are also a unique experience (see below). In addition to Cut the Red Wire, Andy also owns and runs Plastiq Musiq, the electronic record label started up by Ronnie Martin of Joy Electric! That's right, two weeks in a row of record label owners who also play in bands! Enjoy the interview, and don't forget to visit Cut The Red Wire and Plastiq Musiq at the links below.
Brax: Can you tell me about the name Cut the Red Wire? Are you involved with a bomb squad or something?
Cut The Red Wire: I came up with the name about five years ago, and to tell you the truth it doesn't really mean anything at all. I really just thought it sounded cool.
Brax: Tell me about your new album. Also, what's next for Cut the Red Wire?
Cut The Red Wire: My new album has been in the works for about three years now, which by my standards has been far too long. It was supposed to come out last month, but I put off the release because I am still unhappy with some of the mixes. I just can't seem to get it right. Overall I'm much more proud of these songs than any previous release though.
As for what's next, I'm not too sure. Since I started this new album, I have moved seven times, become the owner of my record label Plastiq Musiq, got back together with the girl I love, married that girl, started a printing and design studio, and just last week we had our first son. It's a crazy life...I don't think I'll ever stop making music, but I don't know exactly what my plans are for the future.
Brax: What makes your live shows special?
Cut The Red Wire: I love doing live shows. For me they are special whenever I actually get up the nerve to put one on, but I think the thing that you may (or may not) be hinting at is the fact that I paint at my shows. I always felt like most shows of electronic artists that craft songs on computers or with synthesizers alone tend to be a little on the boring side since most of the time people are using backing tracks. So, when I played my first show, I decided to make it more of a performance art thing rather than just me pressing play and mostly standing around.
Brax: How do you feel about interstellar travel?
Cut The Red Wire: I feel pretty good about it. I always wanted to be an astronaut when I was little.
Brax: Describe your involvement with Plastiq Musiq. What are your goals for Plastiq in the future?
Cut The Red Wire: As I mentioned earlier I am the current owner of the label. I was originally just an artist on the label until about two years ago when the owner at the time was going to call it quits because he was in Scotland going to school. So, instead of letting the label fold, I bought the label and have been trying my best to keep things running and moving forward. I'm actually really excited about Plastiq right now. Our newest addition, Jamie Long, is turning some heads and gaining pretty decent recognition on the underground scene around the world. We should have a new Travelogue EP coming out in the Spring. I'm putting the finishing touches on the first edition of a new compilation series, called The 10 Series, which I think is shaping up to be the best comp PQMQ has ever done. I know that's saying a lot, but it really is going to be great. And to top it off the new CTRW album should be out shortly.
Brax: What are your favorite bands/artists to see live?
Cut The Red Wire: This fall I saw the guys from mewithoutYou touring as the Weiss Family along with Damien Jurado, and those were two of the best performances I've ever seen. I'm always blown away whenever I watch Travelogue live. Jon is a wizard, and that's all there is to it. Also, Iron & Wine. I saw them in Chicago about four or five years ago, and all of the songs were perfect. It was one of the best things I've ever listened to.
Brax: iPod, CD, Vinyl,or other? Why?
Cut The Red Wire: Vinyl. Mostly for the experience. I love the fact that vinyl demands your attention. You have to make time to listen to it. Most of my vinyl albums are ones that I love to just sit down and soak up while I look through the big beautiful artwork. I think it's the way music should be heard, but we're all in such a hurry these days, myself included, that it's hard to take time to just listen to the music and have that be all you are doing.
Brax: Do you have a copy of the first Plastiq Musiq compilation? The one with the Starflyer 59 song on it? Because I really want it. Any plans to re-issue that CD?
Cut The Red Wire: I don't have a real copy. I don't have quite a few of the Plastiq Releases. However, when I was working with Jon Sonnenberg last year on the vocals for my album I came across a copy of the comp that he had and I uploaded the tracks to my computer. I've thought about selling Mp3's of it, but I'm still deciding if that's a good idea or not.
Brax: Well, it would be a good start. I'd even buy those MP3s. Anyway, any advice for others trying to “make it” in music?
Cut The Red Wire: I think I'm still trying to "make it," so I'm not sure I'm really qualified. I guess the rule of thumb is that bands with managers are going places.
Brax: Anything else you’d like to add?
Cut The Red Wire: I think I will leave it at that for now. Thanks!
Visit Cut The Red Wire:
Tell them Brax sent you!
Thanks to Andy Bird.
Check back next Wednesday for another exciting band interview.