Flipron are an entirely unique, almost unclassifiable, band, from Glastonbury, UK, consisting of singer and songwriter Jesse Budd, pianist/organist Joe Atkinson, drummer Mike Chitty and bassist Greg Shepheard. Flipron were signed to Tiny Dog Records in 2003.
At creature mag we put a lot of emphasis on noticing, on noticing what you notice, it’s what this issue is all about, what do you notice?
JB: I can’t speak for the others, as I’ve hijacked this interview for myself, but I’m not sure what I do and don’t notice. I feel it’s important to notice and understand your emotions, your subtle secret intentions, your real motives, things that you don’t really like to admit to yourself. We deceive ourselves on so many levels. But in physical terms, smells are well worth noticing as they are so evocative.
Smells are generally under-represented on the noticing stakes. I also like little sounds. Bird song, ticking clocks, watches, breathing. Quiet breezes. When I drive Mrs. Flipron to work in the mornings, we drive through the Somerset levels near Glastonbury where we live. In the spring we notice Little Egrets lurking in boggy fields.
They’re like small herons but completely snow white, really gorgeous looking creatures. Mrs Flipron has an eye for tiny details like no other. She can spot the tiniest of flowers in the busiest of surroundings. She is a Master Noticer. I am but her clumsy apprentice.
You are a band with seemingly lots of influences yet it’s hard to put you in any sub-genre. Do you see this as a good thing? How would you define your sound?
Yes it’s true we have lots of influences, and we readily allow them to find there way into our music. We don’t have a door policy or a dress code for our influences! I think most musicians and writers have lots of influences, possibly they don’t always confess it as readily as we do. Our sound I would describe as spooky, cartoonish, wordy and, at a push, modestly exotic.
Humour seems to play an important role in your music, who are Flipron’s comedy inspirations?
There’s a difference between humour in music and Comedy as such. Humour is an emotion like any other. We should not fear it as part of an artists toolkit. Pop music becomes sterile when it loses it’s sense of humour. Personally I’m very fond of artists such as Beefheart and Syd Barrett, who had a strong element of humour in their work, without it ever really being comedy. I love Jarvis Cocker too for the wit that is such an important part of his writing. For Flipron some humour is just needed in what we do; we have lots of songs about mortality, loss, decrepitude, regret and facing up to the horrors we’ve hidden in the unconscious. Without some humour our music would be depressing and unlistenable! So it’s part of a balancing act. And pop music is entertainment as well as art, we’d be cheating people if we weren’t able to give them some enjoyment.
There are numerous references to dogs in your songs, which breed of canine would Flipron be?
A mongrel of course! A canine cocktail. The only one of our kind.
If you had to name three objects that have had a profound influence over the music you write, what would they be?
The ear. The heart. The head.
Finally, what’s next for the band? Festivals, gigs, more releases?
Correct! Festivals, gigs, more releases. In fact, we have a single, Dogboy Vs. Monsters coming out on May 14th. You can see the video online at the moment on our myspace page. (It has giant crabs marching across the Somerset countryside) Then some gigs. Then some festivals. Then we’ll record the new album in the autumn, if we’ve finished writing, arranging, rehearsing it….