Interview: Al Lover

Your twitter states "takes drugs to make beats take drugs to". So, what is it about Spacemen 3 that has you, me and so many people hooked on their music for so long?
For me the connection to the blues and gospel in their music is what really does it for me. I feel like what they did was an extension of something really deeply rooted and there for it resinates more. I think they really respected that. I also really dig the emphasis on texture, simplicity and groove as well.

Can I guess that you are a fan of John Spencer, too?
I love John Spencer. Everything from Pussy Galore to Heavy Trash and in between. He's another one that understands the history of blues and rock n roll music and does it right with his own spin.

You paid homage to the great Captain Beefheart's album "Safe As Milk...". Name why every music lover should own this epic album?
It's a classic, not one wasted moment on that record. So ahead of his time. Beefheart is the god.

What were you thinking when you titled an album "Al Lover’s Distorted Reverberations of Reverberating Distortion – Psychedelic Reinterpretations of Contemporary Rock ‘n Roll"?
I just though about how most the bands I sampled were using reverb and distortion effects on their guitars to kind of define their sound and that I was distorting the reverberations of what they were doing even further in a different way. I also thought it sounded kind of funny.

With First Fam you've released about 20 rap albums. Are there any new hiphop/rap artists that have impressed you over the last couple of years?
Yeah for sure, I really dig Kendric Lamar's new record a lot. Also, The Underachievers from NYC, The homie Alexander Spit from LA/SF, Davinci from SF. Too many to name, Rap is really good right now. I dig that groups like Odd Future and Death Grips have made punk rock ethos cool to the new generation of younger rappers. Old man rap ideals can be kind of silly at times. I'm glad to see the young kids trying something new and opposing the old ways.

You are now based in San Francisco, which happens to be sending constant psych/garage vibes to the whole world, lately. What is it about this city that keeps giving us great music all the time?
I don't know the city's just got a great musical history. From the hippies, to the punks, Garage rockers, bay area rap and electronic music as well. The city just has a very creative vibe and attracts creative people.

You've done the remixes and you've done the parties and the albums and you're the man in SF. So, name 5 bands that make your top SF list for 2013 so far.
I'm definitely not the man in SF, ha! Just trying to stay busy. As far as SF bands go right now though. Thee Oh Sees (oh course), Ty Segall, Burnt Ones, Pow!, Wax Idols, Cool Ghouls, again too many to name. The Mallard and Blasted Canyons are in there as well. I'm sure there's 100 new bands that formed over the last couple months that are gonna rule here shortly as well!

You played quite a few shows at SWSX last week. Your impressions of this carnival of modern music business?
My favorite part about sxsw is just seeing people I know from other towns I don't get to see too often and meeting new people, discovering new bands. It's great fun. I don't even ever go to any official sxsw shows, but I will gladly drink all the free booze from money hungry corporate sponsors.

Any bands/artists that impressed you at SWSX?
I saw a great punk band Glitz from SF at the burger records show that I hadn't even ever seen in SF. They rocked. Camera, an amazing Kraut rock band was really good too, I can't remember where they were from, I believe they're European. Deep Space from Austin, TX killed it as well.

How do you feel about coming to play in Greece? What are we to expect from your show(s) here?
I'm very excited to experience Greece! My shows will be very drum beat heavy and psychedelic. Hopefully the sound man will turn me all the way up so it's extra loud and the bass knocks! It's music you can nod your head to and zone out or make you dance depending on what substances you consume!

Name one thing in life that isn't negotiable.

Al Lover will perform in Thessaloniki for the first time on April 21st @ Residents

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