Heel to toe to hair and hoof and it's head over heels and it's all but an ark-lark...


  • Polish Television TVP2
  • May 1994


EF: Robin was already very much into playing music, playing guitar and everything when he was 17. And he was already in a band with his best friend Will Heggie. They were in a band that played cover versions of songs. And they got very tired of this, so they decided to start their own band. And it was at that time when firs drum machine came out. So Robin bought the machine and started to figure out how to program drums.

I knew them from going to the same kind of gigs, the same concerts,just hanging around the same places. And they asked me if I would like to come along to the rehearsal. And have a stab at singing—which I did. I wasn’t sure it was for me, but I’ve tried working in a factory, tried to do source of things, but I wasn’t happy so, I’d stuck with it. And that was the beginning of the band.

Well the freedom came really when we moved away. When we were given the record contract, which saved our lives, basically. It was an excuse for us to move away, because we didn’t have the courage to do that—until then. And that’s when we moved away. And that’s why the band broke up.

Will didn’t have the courage, even if he was not happy. He was afraid I think to move, and so the band broke up and Robin and I moved away to London and made one or two records until we met Simon, Wwho’s a complete sweetheart. We warmed to him immediately. He fitted in so well, so quickly. And that became new Cocteau Twins.

Our music changes because of what’s happening in our private lives. Because we’re growing and so the music grows. You will always have an idea what is going on with Robin and Simon and myself because of the way the music is. It’s the reflection of our lives. I think.

Language I’ve used to… I’ve played so many games with it and was so dishonest but being convinced that I am being very honest—its very complicated. But I think especially for the lyrics I’ve definitely used it to say to express my feelings without actually saying what it is I’m so hurt and so much pain about. Which I didn’t do for Four-Calendar Café. I did the opposite. That took a lot of courage. But I think on singing on Blue Bell Knoll was the same. The same feelings.

I think speaking is complete opposite of singing. Speaking is very human, it’s the voice of human being. Singing is your being. Singing is the voice of your soul. I don’t know what else to say about it. It saved my life. That’s what singing is - it’s healing. That’s how I grow. I find it so hard to speak. Singing is a way I do it most better way.

What do you think about the music videos?

RG: I don’t like them for the simple reason that if you take any piece of music and listen to it you make pictures inside your own mind. and everyone has a different pictures inside the brain. But as soon as you make music videoclip to that piece of music then you are hear the music again and you always see the video.

How do you work on songs? Does music come first and then you record vocal?

RG: Vocal always is the last thing, ‘cause Liz is so slow. She is so slow. This is why we make records every couple of years, ‘cause she’s so slow. So we make the music first. And then… she is very slow.

What is the difference between the Cocteau Twins with Will Heggie and Cocteau Twins with Simon?

It’s different people. With different people you are going to get different music. Different people, different ages, different amount of experience. The more you make the more you experience life.

I was like 19 when I last worked with Will.

You’ve been in the band for 10 years, can you tell something about working on your style?

SR: We have definitely developed the sound over the years that is unquestionably the Cocteau Twins. I don’t think even if we’d try we could get away of that. Because this sound is the part of us. We very much use technology in our studio to make the music. It’s almost like the another person in the group. We very much experiment with sound. For me if I just play guitar that is quite dull on its own. So if I use a lot of effects, delays, reverb, blah blah I can make it sound lot more interesting that it really is. And that’s what inspires you to make the sound. I think by experimentation over the years we have developed… a bit but very slowly. I know people who don’t know our music very well, they hear a bit and say oh Cocteau Twins just sounds the same.

I find the easiest musical process for me is solitude. I do my work better when I’m on my own and don’t feel paranoid about it. Working with people you don’t know that well it can be quite scary. And it took me 10 years to relax with Robin. We always used to write music in other rooms, in each other’s absence. But I think now we’re getting relaxed a bit more, I feel slightly more confident in my own ability. Cause I don’t have a great self-confidence, and I don’t go around thinking “no, I must work with this person or that person”.

What are your impressions after the concert? People told us that it was ecstatic experience.

EF: I don’t know what to say… I’m really surprised, shocked and amazed. I know we had a lot of fun. It’s a pleasure to sing. Especially when people are enjoying it so much. It’s better tha any drug in the world! It;’s amazing. I’ve felt a lot of love in concert hall. It filled the room. It is privilege to come and play.

What would you say about evolution of your music in context of other bands, other music?

EF: We… I now there is a place for everyone. Even in times when we’re not very fashionable. Because we don’t sound like everybody else around.

There’s a place for everyone. And everybody does influence each other, whether you think it or not. I believe that. And everything is the way it is because everything has already happened. I think it’s just important that everybody gets heard. Everybody who makes music or any different kind of art should be allowed to have an audience. There is an audience for everyone.

I cheat sometimes. I know I’m feeling emotional but I’m not actually saying what the pain is about. But you’re still getting a pain. Becuse I still feel it to a degree.

The very first sound of human being is cry, then we learn how to express ourselves using words.

And I feel like baby. And I feel like baby when I sing. I’m really a child, an infant when I sing. I don’t know wheter that’s good or bad. I just know that’s what happens. It’s probably good, probably… ▣