Gimme Your Answers: An Interview w/ BRAIDS

Photo by Landon Speers

Calgary experimental indie dream-pop group BRAIDS released their second album Flourish // Perish on August 20th. AMBY caught up with the trio’s Raphaelle Standell-Preston to talk about their floating black ball artwork, creating new laws, favourite live concerts, and our crazy questions. And man, did she have some fantastic answers.

AMBY: Hello BRAIDS, cheers for speaking with AMBY. What’s the band been up to lately?

BRAIDS: We have been preparing for our tour in support of Flourish // Perish. Just practicing a lot, amongst hang outs. We have been eating lots of summer treats during breaks. I have a bit of a sweet tooth as of late. I go through these phases sometimes.

AMBY: How would you describe each band member in one word?

BRAIDS: Taylor – Giraffe, Austin – Rabbit, Raphaelle – Fawn

AMBY: Which songs are the quintessential BRAIDS?

BRAIDS: Most definitely for the audience to decide. All of our songs are very Braids to me because they were written under this monicker for this project.

AMBY: Your second album Flourish // Perish is set for release on the 20th! Which songs are your favourite off the record?

BRAIDS: It changes all of the time, but Victoria has definitely stuck with me through my ups and downs of the record. I also really like Girl. I probably like Girl and Victoria the most often.

AMBY: What was the inspiration for the In Kind video?

BRAIDS: You would have to ask the director, Angus Borsos, for specifics. But I know that when I would sit down and talk with him about what I wanted, I kept talking to him about wanting a video that felt like something more than was something. And a video that didn’t really have a story, or characters. We wanted to visualize what the mind looks like through images. The way he went about capturing the footage for In Kind was very natural and human. He would do a little bit everyday, watch trees, watch the sunrise, watch water fall. We wanted it to be very human and to portray what it would be like to see a mind loose itself.

AMBY: Where would BRAIDS go in a time machine?

BRAIDS: A time machine will never exist so I would rather not answer this question, for it would make me desire something that can never be pursued.

AMBY: What is the significance behind the floating black ball seen in your album and single artwork?

BRAIDS: Again, you have to ask the designer, Marc Rimmer, for specifics. Marc does all of our design work, he did the Native Speaker album cover and a lot of our press photos. We gave the record to Marc and he came up with this. We told him we felt like the record didn’t have a lot of colour in it, and that it was the marriage between nature and technology. The floating black orb to me represents the records dependance and experimentation with technology. It’s interesting how the black orb kind of consumes the natural background in the image, but the orb is still very inviting. There is no battle going on between the orb and the environment, it’s very married. I love what Marc has done with the art work. He is a genius.

AMBY: If you could create a law that everyone would have to follow, what would it be?

BRAIDS: Hahaha, these kind of questions are so strange to answer ! Jesus, what a question ! I don’t know, I guess I would ask that people try to exhibit compassion and understanding when faced with problems, I guess then we wouldn’t have so many ‘problems’.

AMBY: What are the top three live shows you’ve seen in your life?

BRAIDS: Fever Ray at Metropolis for Pop Montreal, Montreal, QC. Women at Republik for Sled Island Festival, Calgary, AB. Savages at La Tulipe, Montreal, QC

AMBY: What’s the best song of 2013?

BRAIDS: Very hard question. So many good songs. But first song that comes to mind is Overgrown – James Blake.

AMBY: And lastly, what’s something about BRAIDS that nobody knows yet?

BRAIDS: Taylors middle name is Bonner.


Thank you BRAIDS, for giving us your answers!

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Alicia Atout

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