What about the decision to found
your own label. Was there any contact with record companies such as
Verglas, GEP, Cyclops but they were not interested or do you think
it's better to manage all things yourself?
Verglas were interested in
us. We thought long and hard about it, and decided to do it
ourselves. We had spent a lot of time and commitment recording the
album and it was difficult for us to hand it over to someone else.
Also, it's something we were curious about - it's a challenge,
running the business side ourselves. It is turning out to be a lot
of hard work, but we think it is worth it, as no-one else can give
the band the commitment that we can.
The prog scene is very
male-dominated - the fans and the musicians. So why?
I've no idea why, and it
doesn't worry me. I can only do what I do and hope that people enjoy
it, whether they are male or female.
And what about you???? You are
involved in the songwriting process, you do all the lyrics, you are
managing things behind the music - normally you had to be a man!!!
I don't think that you really
believe that. If you do then it is very disappointing.
What about your work for the
theatre, film etc.
I enjoy acting and have
played a variety of roles on the stage, particularly in comedy
plays. Mike and I have also just finished filming in a sci-fi cult
B-movie called "Foiled". The film is a full length feature
film, filmed on a very low budget, about an invasion by aliens who
are covered in foil! If you are touched by one you turn to foil.
Mike and I play students whose house is taken over by these aliens
and who have to battle to defeat them and save the planet!
It was a lot of fun to film (this
was going on at the same time as recording the album). It is now
being edited and we are writing some music for the soundtrack. If
anyone wants to know more, the web address is ww.foiled.co.uk.
We are also talking to other
Directors about doing some more short films soon, if we can fit it
You are able to play keys, but
on the record you "only" sing. Okay, something also the
man had to do....
There you go again! But yes,
I play the keyboard and use it when writing songs. But, Mike is the
keyboard player, and a great deal better at it than me. I am sure
that has more to do with his talent and experience than his
What do you love more - making
music or acting?
I love them both, but my
first choice would be music. The fact is I just found the acting
easier. I didn't grow up in a musical family, but my Dad is very
theatrical! So it seemed more natural to go into that. The music is
much more challenging because I want it to be very good and the
output matters more because it is very much more personal. Janison
Edge is just the most interesting thing I have done yet and I think
that it combines both theatre and music. So I am very lucky!
Do you agree that there is a
strong influence on Janison Edge by the typical neo prog bands, such
as Landmarq, Shadowland and Pendragon? And what are the differences.
We write the music that we
like, so there are bound to be similarities I suppose. However, we
had never even heard any Landmarq or Pendragon when we first wrote
the songs for this album. I tend to think Janison Edge is more
intimate than some of the new prog stuff and more song-based, like
the old Genesis stuff. We wanted to create something with a slightly
different feel and I think we have achieved this, mainly because of
the different backgrounds of the members of the band. Particularly,
Mike is classically trained and likes to achieve a full-bodied
orchestral sound; Ian's background includes Jazz, Funk and Blues and
he brings all these styles brilliantly into the music; and I like to
bring a lot of drama and emotion into it all. This is all supported
by Dave and Paul who are just so solid and talented.
But it is really always up to the
listeners to judge.....
Can you tell me something about
the character of Mary Goode?
Not all the songs are about
Mary Goode, but she provides a common thread through some of them.
She is a fictional character. It is implied that she suffers as a
child and as a result loses touch with reality in some way as an
adult. She goes on to make her living in "unusual ways"
and takes revenge on her parents and on the church in which she was
brought up. She is led to some kind of acceptance of her fate
through a dream in which she bargains for her future with a fantasy
There is one track sounding for
me more like a song from Brecht/Weil? (Joker).
Do you think so. That's
interesting. Joker started off as 3 weird chord changes on the piano
with a quirky rhythm and it turned out in this strange surreal way.
Lyrically, it's a bout this rather devious character who sets traps
for people and takes pleasure in their misfortune, which fits in
quite well with the music. We wondered what people would make of it,
but it has actually turned out as a lot of people's favourite!
What do you think about the
upcoming reactions of the progressive rock audience to your record?
What do you expect?
We have been really pleased
with the reaction. The reviews have been great. Because Mike and I
run the record label, we get all the reactions and comments directly
to us, which has been really good.
We are looking forward to getting
the music heard by as many more people as possible. This will
include gigging later in the year. Hopefully, the reaction will
continue to be as good.
But maybe all the people would
say no-one needs this record really (I am sure the people will love
your music). What do you do? Don't care? Stopping playing your
music? Changing your style?
Thankfully we don't have to
do any of this because the reaction has been so good. People will
always have different opinions. We might disagree with some of them,
but we take notice of all of them and try to improve. But we could
never stop playing music - whatever people thought about it.
Do you have a favourite song on
All the members of the band
have different opinions. For me it changes. But I think probably
Julie Lies, because it means a lot to me and has turned out very