An Interview with Paul Elliott of Desolation Yes!
Think they don’t make music like they used to? Well Glasgow band, Desolation Yes! agree.
Lead singer, Paul Elliott, said: “These days people don’t release albums, they release collections of songs. We wanted to make an album with a central theme and a narrative, which is what we’ve done.”
The album Out of Orbit offers electric- rock- crossover, with Elliott on vocals, Jagged on guitar, Miro on drums, and Shisho on bass. All tempered with some sequencers, drum machines and synthesizers.
Using this mixed bag, the band tells the story of Tech, a character searching for utopia. Elliott explained the concept was influenced by theatre.
“It sounds a bit arty-farty but it was an interesting thing to try and I think it worked. There’s a song on the album called Army of Flesh, which is basically a play within a song.”
This unusual approach comes from a band with unusual roots. While the founding members Elliott and Jagged grew up together, the latter two Slovakians only met once they had immigrated to Glasgow. One advert and some sessions later Desolation Yes! was formed.
“The name Desolation Yes! was inspired by a Smashing Pumpkins lyric. Apparently ‘desolation yes’ is also in the bible. That obviously makes us the first band to be mentioned in the bible. Jesus was a fan… still is.”
Jokes aside, Elliott said the band owed its fan base to a breakthrough gig at Classic Grand, where they supported the Howling Bells.
“That was the one that kinda got the ball rolling for us. We wouldn’t be where we are today if it wasn’t for that gig.”
Since then Desolation Yes! have played venues including: the O2 Academy, 13th Note and Strathclyde Union, a far cry away from their modest roots.
Elliott said: “The first Desolation Yes! gig was myself and Jagged performing at Fury Murray’s. Jagged got so drunk he stood on his guitar lead and it popped out.
“He left me to play two songs solo while he figured out what happened. I’m glad to say we’ve come a long way since then. We’ve discovered strap locks for a start…”
Now the band practice at Creation Studios in Maryhill. However, that’s not where they recorded Out of Orbit.
“We had all the equipment we needed to record, so we decided to do it on location. These locations tended to be in flats and houses, but there was something more natural in doing it like that.”
To hear the album, and decide for yourself go to iTunes.