Updated: Nov 24, 2021
Amsterdam Indie-Pop dream surgeons, Pip Blom, have released their latest record Welcome Break from Heavenly Records on October 8th. Taking to the skies, the 4-tuplet recorded the album at England's Big Jelly Studios in Ramsgate. The album is a spiritual successor to their debut Boat, but more mature in tone & grand of scope.
We were lucky enough to catch up with 'Pip and the Bloms', and have a sticky beak about the album, The Ronies and life beyond:
I loved your previous release, Boat. Following on from that, do you think your songwriting and the way you craft songs has changed or evolved at all? What did you learn from Boat, and did it change the way you approached Welcome Break?
"I think it has definitely evolved in certain areas, i think, compared to Boat, Welcome Break is more complex and maybe more layered. But i also have to say: the change isn’t drastic, so you will still recognise the songs as classic Pip Blom songs :) I was really overwhelmed when recording Boat as there is so much going on and so many decisions to make at the same time that impact the sound of the album. With Welcome Break i felt a lot more in control, and like we knew a lot more about what we wanted to achieve. I think maybe confidence has been the main difference."
I heard your latest album Welcome Break was produced over three weeks in Ramsgate’s Big Jelly Studios. Do you have any funny stories from the three weeks to share, or tales from the recording process or perhaps quarantine-period when you arrived in the UK?
"It was a bit chaotic at times to be honest, having to quarantine for 14 days whilst recording the album. We reached out to neighbours of the studio to check if they had any fitness equipment that we could borrow so we could still get some exercise done. Luckily someone did have something laying around, so that was great! We brought 3 shopping carts completely filled with food with us to get us through the first 2 weeks. The planning that went into it all was quite impressive if I look at it now. Making a shopping list with food for 4 people for 2 weeks straight is quite a lot of work."
I share your sentiment for “live energies,” myself. I think live music is the best form of music. Do you have any upcoming tour plans in the wake of the album?
"We do! We’ve got a lot of shows lined-up for 2022. In the Netherlands, Europe, UK, Ireland and the US. We can’t wait to start playing all the new tracks again"
If given the opportunity, who would you love to collaborate with or support / tour with? Anyone in the world, shoot for the stars.
I get very nervous about the idea of collabing with one of my stars, but I would absolutely love to join them on the road. Dream artist to join their tour would be Parquet Courts, Blur, Fat White Family, Metronomy, and the lists goes on and on!
I love that you have a fan-centric app, “Pip Blom Backstage.” It is such an interesting idea, and more bands should do this! Where did the idea to have a band app come from, and what advice would you give to an upcoming band who wanted to do a similar idea? I think you’re geniuses.
"Thank you! We came up with the idea during the first covid-19 wave. Everything we were supposed to do got cancelled and we wanted to come up with a way of still keeping in touch with our fans and creating new stuff. There aren’t a lot of platforms suitable for that so we asked the help of my dad and he created an app! I think my advice to any band that wants to do something similar is: make a long lists with all the ideas you’ve got that you can come up with that are fun to share with your audience and try and built from there. It can be a bit daunting starting a new big project, but trust me: it’s really fun!"
I really loved stuff like ‘Say It’ & ‘Tired’ from Boat, and ‘12,’ ‘Different Tune,’ ‘I Know I’m Not Easy to Like,’ ‘Easy,’ and especially ‘Holiday’ off Welcome Break (and everything between! Stellar album!). I was wondering what your favourite tracks are on the album? Be it your favourite to play, the most sentimental, the tracks you think came together the best, or changed the most…. Whatever! But I’d love to know which ones you’re really happy with or loving right now.
"My favourite track on the album is “I love The City”. It was quite a difficult track to get right in the mixing process as i really wanted it to feel strong and melancholic at the same time. But i’m really happy with the end result, i think it captures exactly what we were looking for and Al, the engineer at the studio, has taken the track to the next level by playing a slightly out of tune trombone on it."
Is there a chance that we will see you in Australia? I personally would love to go crazy in the crowd for you shred wizards!!
"There definitely is, Australia has been really high on our lists of countries we want to go to. So i’m sure we will come over soon!"
Whether the vibe is melancholic and seething, or bopping and never stopping, Pip Blom have perfectly captured the rollercoaster shred-session with Welcome Break. Be it out of tune brass or slow regretful guitarwork, your ears will gobble up these tasty spekulaas-flavoured sound-treats and thank you later. Thanks again to Pippy and the Blomingtens for an outrageous album and for conquering sea, land & sky to bring it to us.