In April, Whitehot Magazine met The Killing Moon from Shoreditch Radio, a happening FM station located in London's East End that plays hot Indie rock, reminiscent of the New York Dolls and the 80s New Wave. The Kills from London were also in town to recharge New York City's Terminal 5 in late April, with their swank-bass and dark, charming sound. Epistrophy café, tucked away on Mott Street, provided the perfect set for a London/New York conversation with two growing media outlets.
Q: How does NYC's East Village and Lower East Side compare to London's East End?
A: It felt like home from home, the roads were wider but if my oyster worked it’d have lead me back to Old St for sure. Brighton has a similar vibe, the people strut a bit slower, the clothes and fashion while in no particular style in uniform all come from the same collective. You definitely get a feel you are in a place where art is happening, is being made or has been made. Aesthetically the Lower East side is a lot prettier than Shoreditch, in the day time Hoxton / Hackney Road definitely cracks in the sun light but at the same time the un-disturbed brick work, shoddy shop fronts and warehouse/outlet handbag/shoe shops give it a real feel. The Lower East Side is much more like Portobello with nicely coloured buildings and some of the finest food shops you’ll ever find in London.
Q: Does the Indie music scene here mix well with its other edgy environments?
A. Aghast, shocked, shuddered at the delights I heard in every café / bar / bemusement hall in the Lower East Side. Tickles of British sounds but so many favourable Yankee Pop indie rock just filling the airwaves inter mingled with perhaps some classic Bob Dylan, Jimmy Hendrix. I kept making notes on my phone to write down the memorable music. Riding the shuttle bus from JFK – Everybody loves the sunshine comes on? What a start to my adventure. Fleet Foxes, Warpaint, Muse? 1979 Smashing Pumpkins, Paul Simon, Foo Fighters, La Roux but a few in the ‘notes section’
Q: Quite often it seems like New York City is exhausted with mainstream culture. How does the city's patchwork of bohemian enclaves compare to London's East End?
A: Shoreditch is very patchwork – you have the bright lights of the Electricity Showroom opposite a dodgy taxi rank next to Shoreditch Town Hall. You don’t stumble upon Old Street, you have to find it and this invisible code means the tourists have to be of a certain elk to venture over and, if they’ve done their research then they are welcome! The Lower East side seems more polite and welcoming, it doesn’t have the pretentious air Shoreditch often has with suits and shorts all being welcome (it was April when I was over so both were on display)
Q: FM radio is turning into something of a vintage experience. Yet it's central to The Killing Moon. How can FM hold up in the face of digital?
A: I broadcast both on FM and Online for two separate stations right now and the online experience superseeds the FM by a long way. Ipods, Iphones, Computers seem more common place than being in Hammersmith between 1 – 3pm on a Saturday afternoon. All the shows I do for Shoreditch Radio are blogged straight away meaning you can listen in Brooklyn if you so desired! FM has its traditions and its regular news updates and local travel and community sort of feel but with Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare our community feel is changing to a different sound. Personally I find this sad and glad – I love local travel and weather updates, road closures, county fair but to be in Brooklyn between 1 – 3pm is tricky. To be online is so much easier to tap into multiple communities and this is the way we push all our shows and is how they are evolving. FM & Online can work together but, as wireless routers get stronger, as hot spots become more common, the crispness of FM is starting to crackle.
Q: Summer is starting to break out like a rash here in New York. The concrete is heating up and the air is sticky. What do you recommend for those hot, humid days and nights?
A. Ice Tea? What the heck is that about – I caught up with Sveta Bout (NYC Singing Sensation) she had an ice tea – hot Tea + Ice + Milk? And a straw. I gave it a go. It was the last time I ordered it. Flock to the parks – central was delightful, I hung out in a grave yard which was quite nice, all the café’s with open fronts are something else as the fire trucks and police cars beep past with their sirens. I never did understand that? Check out some hot sticky indie rock n roll – the Kills were in town when I was over and they pretty much shook the roof off of Terminal 5 and Sveta Bout @ Rockwood, I had to take my hat off (it was roasting).
Q: How can Whitehot tune into The Killing Moon?
A: By playing any 80’s record and remembering that American Dream Optimism behind so many of the synths and just the Friday vibe that so many of those records bring. Van Halen Jump, Born to Run, Its My Life, The Killing Moon, Rush Hour, We built this city on Rock n Roll! Also Friday’s at 12:00 on Shoreditch Radio and the blog I add quite a few ad hoc birthday / dedication shows.
Q: Will The Killing Moon return to New York City - or, were we really that alluring?
A: Christmas I’m planning to return, the snow situation is a slight concern. April was marvellous, 20c humid enough for t-shirts and just so nice to cruse around – the tree’s were all just starting to come out of their shells and it was really springing with excitement. After that the next time I come, I’m not sure if I’ll leave!