Artist Interviews

Q&A: Chad Vangaalen

By | Published on Thursday 9 June 2011

Chad Vangaalen

Folk auteur Chad Vangaalen made his full length debut in 2004 with ‘Infiniheart’, originally released through Canadian indie label Flemish Eye in 2004, but subsequently picked up by Sub Pop. Two more critically acclaimed albums followed – ‘Skelliconnection’ and ‘Soft Airplane’ – before a more experimental release in 2009 under the alternative moniker Black Mold.

Alongside his own projects, Vangaalen has produced Calgary art-rock outfit Women’s first two albums and animated videos for the likes of J Mascis and Holy Fuck, but now he’s back with a new long player of his own, ‘Diaper Island’, his most rock-centric and cohesive effort yet, scheduled for release on 20 Jun via Sub Pop. Currently on tour in the US and Canada, Chad will kick off a string of UK dates with a show at London’s Cargo on 16 Aug.

As the ‘Diaper Island’ release date draws ever closer, Chad was good enough to offer up some concise answers to our Same Six Questions.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
I started out making music with a broken classical guitar that my mom had from her youth. Then I started multi-tracking on two boom boxes bouncing the tracks back and forth.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
Lots of things inspired the new record, relationships, landscape, drugs, time, lack of time, memory, lack of memory.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
When I was writing the “songs” on this record I would most often start with the guitar. On other records I would usually start with the drums or some sort of sample pattern. But with this record I wanted to focus on the guitar arrangements.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
The artists that influence me are lately animators, particularly Rene Laloux. I also really like the bands Möbius and Cluster.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Sorry for shitting in your ears!

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
There’s another instrumental album in the works and I’m working on an animated video for ‘Peace On The Rise’ from ‘Diaper Island’.