Steven Baltelle of Lostalone got to chat with Tim Morizet ahead of their UK tour and album release, “Shapes of Screams”…
TM: If you were a porn star what would be your porn star name?
SB: Um, wow. I’ve no idea. I’d probably go with my actual name because I think it’s perfect
TM: In your opinion, what makes a good front man?
SB: I think you need to be able to communicate to an audience. I like the theatrical situation on the stage, as it gets people involved. I think it’s a special ingredient that’s hard to pinpoint, some people have it and some people don’t. Sometimes when watching a band its very apparent if the
singer has got that kind of magic that captivates people.
TM: Who is your favourite front man?
SB: Freddie Mercury
TM: What would I need to listen to if I were to steal your iPod/MP3/iPhone?
SB: I’ve got a playlist that I have on all the time; it’s a mixture of 80’s pop, 70’s rock like Madonna and Whitney Houston and Black Sabbath, it’s a big mix.
TM: Is there a song you listen to that you’re embarrassed of?
SB: No, I don’t really think you should ever be embarrassed of a song that you
like. I’ve got no guilty pleasure, if you like it that’s great.
TM: How would you describe your music to someone who doesn’t know you?
SB: I’d say it’s very musical, actually. We’re a guitar band with a lot of vocals, a lot of guitars; the stage show is very theatrical. I’d say musical is probably the best way to describe our band.
TM: When you’re writing new songs, what comes first, the sound or the lyrics?
SB: I tend to get them at the same time. I like to write songs when I go on walks. I normally start singing a melody with lyrics and then it all kind of forms around that, I take it to instruments after its fully formed in my mind. So I think it’s kind of at the same time really.
TM: What inspires you?
SB: A think of lot of inspiration for me, especially on the new record, are internal thoughts really, like time and the lack of it, destiny and legacy in the short period that we have on the planet.
TM: Your new album “Shapes of Screams” will be released on the 7th of April,when do you think is the right time to release an album? How do you decide what songs should go on the album?
SB: That’s a good question. I wrote around a hundred songs for this album and demoed them all at home, it very quickly becomes apparent how certain songs actually fit together. Its not necessarily kicking out songs that aren’t very good, it’s more to do with finding songs that feel like they are on the same theme. In terms of the release date it’s all really about the cycle of the band. We felt like we’d said everything we needed to say on the last record and this is time to get the next one out.
TM: You formed in 2005, and in 2007 were nominated for Best Newcomer at the Kerrang Awards, what has changed between then and now? How much have you as a band changed?
SB: I think we’ve changed a lot, actually. We formed a band very quickly and did a lot of stuff that we’d never done before, we toured a lot of places we’d never been to like Europe and had a great time. For me personally that really changed me as a person. I’d been on family holidays when I
was younger, just to real classic British holidays places like Spain and Portugal and all of a sudden I got to go to Germany, Austria, Scandinavia and America, and all on my own terms with
a band. It opened my eyes seeing how amazing those places were and I think it had a big influence on my music and outlook on everything really.
TM: What has been your favourite place to tour?
SB: I think maybe Switzerland. I really love it there. I’d been there with the band and ever since I’ve just kept on going back. We went to Montreux, a very musical place, Deep Purple wrote “Smoke on the Water” there and Freddie Mercury lived there and Queen, Michael Jackson and David Bowie all recorded in studios there, and its become a place where I always go to once we’ve
finished making a record. We’ve toured and we’ve played there, it’s just become a place I absolutely love. I always feel very excited to go there.
TM: So it’s a very inspiring place?
SB: Oh, it’s beautiful. There are mountains and lakes, it’s just incredible.
TM: On tour do you have any time to visit tourist attractions?
SB: We try our hardest, and it works out that in some places you can have a full day seeing things and in others you have a situation where you have to choose between another hour in bed or quickly getting up to see everything. In Berlin we had two hours to fit in a tour of Berlin, which
was pretty difficult!
TM: In April you’ll be touring the UK with your new album, and you’ll also be playing at Sin City in Swansea. What are the negative points of touring?
SB: I can’t really think of a negative point from my point of view. I love everything about touring. I think things are very different now. If you were a band in the 70’s going on tour would be no contact with friends or anyone, it was a different world. But now in the era we live in you can speak to family or friends from every second if you want to. Apart from that I love meeting fans of the band, I love the travel, I like the feeling of going out as a gang trying to put on the best
show you can.
TM: I’m sure you’ve seen some crazy stuff on stage, what has been your favourite scene?
SB: It’s strange really, when the adrenaline takes over you can’t stop yourself. The craziest thing that happened to me was probably playing at Wembley Arena. Mark and Alan used to walk on before me, and when I went up to the mic and shouted “Hello Wembley!” I realised that Mark was nowhere to be seen. I was pretty worried as we were in front of 10,000 people, and I thought, “this is a dramatic way of quitting the band!” It turns out he’d forgotten his idiom monitor and had run back to the dressing room to get it, when I turned round again he was back on stage but for ten seconds I’d been stood in front of all those people just thinking, “oh my God.”
TM: What was the most recent concert you went to?
SB: Last week I went to see Brian May, he’s doing a small acoustic tour with Kerry Ellis at the Buxton Opera House theatre. It was very intimate and absolutely amazing.
TM: You’ve played a lot of big festivals like Download and Reading, do you prefer playing outside or inside?
SB: I think I definitely prefer playing inside, because the sound at outside shows is never as good. You just can’t control it. But there’s a great feeling of walking out at these places like Reading and it’s amazing, it’s like a surge of energy. Even though it’s not a competition you want to be the band that people are talking about. There’s a real excitement over festivals and we’re hoping to do a lot more of them.
TM: Do you notice any difference between the crowds in other countries, like the crowd at German festival Rock and Ring and Reading?
SB: I think the German and UK crowds are quite similar. That being because both countries have similar big festivals like Reading and Rock and Ring. Places like Spain and Barcelona don’t have big festivals like that so the crowds are absolutely wild at these places when they get big bands play there. Whereas England and Germanic crowds have attended quite a lot of big festivals because
there are so many in those countries. They still love the bands, they just don’t get as crazy as the crowds in other places.
TM: How does it feel to be on stage and see people singing along to your songs?
SB: It’s definitely the highlight of being in a band. That and hearing your own music recorded to how you like it for the first time. But seeing that on stage is the best feeling. Even supporting bands in bigger regions doesn’t equate to playing to a crowd of 500 in like, Vienna, and hearing them
all sing your words back to you.
TM: Where do you see yourself and the band in five years time?
SB: Well I really hope we would have released at least three other albums, and had been successful in going along and making music that connects with people. I think the definite ambition would be to go to places like Japan and Russia and Australia, which are places that we’ve never been before. Apart from growing musically, I’d love the band to be able to get to those places.
TM: Do you have a checklist?
SB: The real top of it would be Japan. We’ve crazilyy never been to Poland and we’ve got so many requests to go so I’m hoping that will be arranged.
TM: What would you tell a band that until now hasn’t had the same success you’ve experienced, what should they do?
SB: One of my main philosophies is: don’t ever try to be like what’s popular at the time because you think that will make you popular. You should do what makes you proud and what comes naturally. I’ve seen too many bands that see a successful band and just completely copy that style. Time after time record labels take on bands that sound similar to a bigger one, but it will never be a career. It will only be around for a limited time. Bands that play music for themselves will hopefully stick out and have a career.
TM: What do Swansea have to look forward to on the 6th of April?
SB: Firstly, Lostalone have never been to Swansea so we’re very excited to play there, and mainly, if you’ve heard the name Lostalone before but haven’t been sure what it is or what we’re like, I’d say this is the show to come to. We’ve had a lot of great feedback from our recent show so I can
promise a great show.
TM: I’m going to now ask you 5 questions in a row and you have to answer as brief as possible. Firstly, what is your favourite swear word?
TM: If you had to migrate to another country tomorrow where would you go?
TM: What’s your favourite book?
SB: The Hobbit
TM: What do you value most in your life?
SB: I guess friends and family
TM: What’s your favourite drink?
TM: So we look forward to seeing you in Swansea, and maybe the Pepsi will be on me!
SB: Yes, I look forward to it!