Just had a smoke, sitting in a very noisy, dimmed restaurant and are nipping on a four Swiss franc sparkling TAP! water. Welcome to Zurich.
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Thief Live”?
Recorded one year ago and still a killer song!
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
Indeed. The fact that everybody struggles with mental health issues and nobody is talking about, was quite influential. Even more, when you experience it first hand and you realize that the only way to process it, is by giving it a voice. A loud voice!
How was the filming process and experience behind the video?
It was pretty simple because it’s what we do all the time and love the most: playing live.
The single comes off your new album Soliva – what’s the story behind the title?
Soliva literarily means the “place of the rising sun” in the romansh language. It’s the fourth tongue in Switzerland only spoken by a few hundred people deep in the swiss alps. It’ s the start of something new, fresh and unexplored. Us after 1.5 years of absence and abstinence.
How much did the break between this and your past material get to help you guys?
It was like breaking up with your boyfriend after five years, just to fall in love with him again.
After gaining so much success – did the break also help you guys cutting the pressure off and coming with a whole clean mindset?
Success is always relative – we enjoyed every second but everything went way to fast. Imagine to count to 10 in one second, there is no way this will work out and this is how it felt like. The break was the best thing we could have ever done! We finally took the space and time to reflect about what we’ve done as a band but also as individuals.
How was the recording and writing process?
Intense, sweaty but irresistibly fresh with a splash of soda water, well stirred. Only this time we did not forget the olive.
How Converse and Jigsaw has influence your writing?
What role does Switzerland play in your music?
It’s beautiful and rough at the same time and so are we. Thus we were all together watching the blood moon in the mountains last year. You can definitely hear that!
What aspect of depression and war did you get to explore on this record?
Writing those songs gave us a deeper understanding of how complicated, sad and concealed both – war and depression – is, here in Europe.
What made you guys want to touch on these dark themes?
We felt, that a lot of people are carrying those topics with them but are not willing or brave enough to face and talk about them. That’s what we wanted to change; at least for us.
Was that always the initial plan to touch on these topics or it rather evolve through the process?
There was no initial plan to stick to. It came as natural as it is for others, to write the fifteenth love song in a row and still don’t get that he’s not coming back, dude!
Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?
Any plans to hit the road?
If England would love to have us we’d be here as fast as our bus could drive.
What else is happening next in YOKKO’s world?
Waiting for our first EP “Soliva” to be released on April 26th, pay for that fucking expensive, sparkling tap water and leave that dimmed light.