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Barry Burns: "The challenge is selling music to those who get it for free"

Logotipo de La Vanguardia La Vanguardia 31/05/2014 Esteban Linés

A few months ago, Rave Tapes appeared on the market, the eighth record by such a solid band as Mogwai, a Scottish collective formed by good friends who played the Primavera three years ago. Champions of an almost timeless post rock, the band will be presenting their aforementioned and newly published album, a record that allows them to move among a wide range of rocking nuances. Multi-instrumentalist Barry Burns explains from Glasgow the reasons behind the sound of this always attractive band.
(ATP stage, 1 h.).

What has been the evolution of the band since it started, more than twenty years ago?
Most of our time is spent in buses, planes and stages, which brings you to love or hate your band mates and to deeply know the music we handle. This last point has been very useful to us since we started to self-publish our music a few years ago; we have seen how the music industry has had to undergo a deep transformation that has brought us to play in the most unforeseen places or to write scores for movies or TV shows.

What are macro festivals such as the Primavera good for?
We came to the fest quite a while ago as a Dj set, and then about four years ago to play a show we will never forget. This is a very important festival in the circuit and, for the fans, a chance to choose a number of bands and solo artists that otherwise they would never have the chance to see in the same place.

If something defines Mogwai it is your stylistic lack of definition, the multiple influences in your music. Is that something premeditated?
No. All the band members have different musical tastes and preferences and when we start to write and record, everything evolves in a spontaneous manner. I think that Come On Die Young was the only occasion in which we entered the studio with the record written and defined from start to finish.

However, in this Rave Tapes the rock vocabulary appears to be a tad more diluted.
Look, it was not a conscious thing. We used a lot of synthesizers, for instance, but that was simply what we felt like doing.

What is the secret not only of Mogwai’s longevity, but of the fact that you are such a prolific band?
Our friendship is what keeps us together. Today, the challenges are to make and distribute music in a self-managed way, like we do, and to sell music to a generation of fans who have grown accustomed to get it for free.

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