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Belleruche - Spin Me A Swing Song

Author: Daniel Crichton-Rouse
Friday, 19 October 2007
The latest release from tru thoughts is by a London trio called Belleruche, who evoke a creative fusion of Paris combo and Portishead. 3D’s Daniel Crichton-Rouse was well impressed and had to find out more.

Belleruche are quite young. What were you doing before the group formed-
DJ Modest: Running illegal music festivals, buying records in South American flea markets and driving tractors.
Ricky Fabulous: Practicing guitar in a cold basement in the north of England
Kathrin deBoer: Hanging out in a small fishing village in the south of England with my Marconiphone and Spanky Wilson.

I get quite a Django Reinhardt vibe to a few of your songs, particularly with Minor Swing – are you fans-
DJM: Yes, but [we] don’t want to give the impression that we are obsessed by him or anything. Lots of musicians take the ‘gypsy’ style of playing to the extent of just replicating what people have done previously. The interesting stuff happens when you combine that idea with another one, rather than just playing in a certain style.
RF: I love music that swings and has melody. Django Reinhardt kinda does both better than most.
KD: He’s the man.

Who else inspires you creatively- What are some of your favourite records-
DJM: Too many to mention here – I can send you a 10-page list with room to add stuff if you want. My favorite record in the world right now is Uncle Sam Goddam by Brother Ali on Rhymesayers records. But I’ll have changed my mind by this afternoon…
RF: Sugababes.
KD: A lot of old blues guys like Lighting Hopkins, Ledbelly, Seasick Steve…

Apparently some of the tracks were written in “train carriages, dubious minicabs and pub backrooms”- We can imagine you writing in a pub, but in a train carriage- How does that work-
DJM: It’s just like commuting to the office, but with an mpc instead of the newspaper.

What sort of crowds do you guys get- Mainly jazz lovers and left-field electronic fans-
DJM: Lots of crazy French art student girls, old blues fans, turntable geeks and your sister.

You have your own label Hippoflex. Why did you sign with Tru Thoughts-
Obviously it has boosted your profile-
DJM: Hippoflex got too big for us really, it’s moved on. The CEO hangs out with P Diddy and Bono now and is trying to put together a combination of Live Aid and Make Poverty History called Style Aid, where fashion designers and musicians battle each other in a huge arena live on MTV, with the winner becoming the next US president.
RF: It’s true

What do you do outside of the band-
DJM: Too much.
RF: Probably not enough.
KD: A bit more than Ricky…

What do the numbers refer to in 13:6:35- Is it a date-

DJM: If you fancy it, where shall we go-
KD: …all of us-

Have any of you been to Australia before, for business or pleasure-
DJM: Yes, got to buy records in some of your finer junk stores and op shops.
RF: I’ve rarely been out of England.
KD: I grew up in Sydney.

Finally, I see there are plans to change the Camden Markets. How much of an impact do you think this will play on Camden, such a vital part of London’s culture-
DJM: It should all be frozen in liquid transparent acrylic like a modern Pompeii, so future generations can marvel at the Goths, Japanese students and DJ Vee from the Elephant Records, all drunk in their natural habitat.
KD: It’ll be a shame to see the Stables go – there’s a lot a good music and artists that will need to find new homes.

WHO: Belleruche
WHAT: Enmore Theatre / Will & Toby’s / Turntable Soul Music through Tru Thoughts/Creative Vibes
WHEN: Saturday 3 November / Saturday 10 / Out now