Manchester based multi-instrumentalist Jim Noir is back in the spotlight after 2008's eponymous sophmore effort. Ciaran Gilligan caught up with him to talk about his new EP as well as plans for the future.
Zooper Dooper is a great little burst of lo-fi psychedelia. Is there a reason why you choose to release an EP this time around instead of an album, and do you think you’ll release shorter works with more frequency in the future?
I think thats the plan for now yeah. All the bits im writing at the moment seem to be going in a few different directions, so Im thinking that if i write different EP's and people dont like one, they might like another one. I do want to do a proper album this year but because ive got stuff already ready, Id rather put it out now rather than waiting about.
Playing the instruments on all of your stuff when you record, are you ever wary of letting a band loose on your songs during the live shows? Is it hard to relinquish that level of control, or is it a release for you?
I positively encourage it. I wouldnt feel comfertable stifling anyones creativity really. Obviously we're aiming at playing the song as well as possible, but if anyone has any ideas in rehearsals then you find that a lot of the time they work really well.
Your lyrics are quite simplistic and grounded; a lot snapshots of everyday Mancunian life. The music, on the other hand, is more akin to Zappa getting drunk with Brian Wilson…do you have a specific process when you write a song to get those two elements working together? Is it music or lyrics first, or do you just throw it all in the pot and see what happens?
I just press record usually and i have no idea what is going to form infront of me. Its a very quick process if things are going well and I do have a larger collection of absolute crap than I do the good stuff. The newer stuff is taking longer to make these days as the tunes are getting more complicated (believe it or not). But I still like it when I can do the whole process in one day and then listen to the results before its jimmys bed time. I seldom go back to anything if I havent finished it in one go as I forget what i was on about.
In terms of those sorts of psychedelic, magic roundabout style nuances in your songs, is that what you grew up being exposed to? Do you listen to the same stuff now, and does what’s on your Ipod influence your writing process much?
Im guessing a lot of tv themes from when i was a kid have been engraned on my brain. Probably used most of them by accident so If i get sued by anyone it will probably be because of this. I dont listen to a huge amount of music these days for some reason. I will buy a few vinyls sometimes if anything good comes out.
I lived in Manchester for five years and the musical hertiage there has always been a huge talking point. How much did coming up through that scene effect your own sound, and do you get chance to keep up with how it’s evolving at the moment? Any new homegrown talent you suggest we keep our eye out for?
Yeah i think a few bands definately got me into the idea of making music in the first place, particularly 808 state, stone roses, guy called gerald. Was never really into the darker side of music from those days but i do like a few tunes by those miserable old bastards. I do see a few bands around from time to time that I like, there are definately a few good ones out there. I have infact just produced an EP by a band called 'Frazer King' who I think will go to the toppermost of the poppermost………if they keep out of trouble for more than 10 minutes the little tinkers.
What are you working on at the moment, and when will we get to hear it? What’s next for Jim Noir?
Im mastering a lot of old songs ready to put on my website as little EPs…all part of The Noir Club. My manager brought round a CD of about 50 songs id sent over the years and I cant remeber writing half of them, some of them rather fun. Writing a lot of things for a possible new EP / Album., and generally readying the band for the Uk tour stating this week and future upcoming dates.
Zooper Dooper is out now. Jim is currently on tour, which includes a stop at Brundell Social Club in Leeds on February 5th. Visit link for more info.