Pedrum Siadatian talks the new Allah-Las EP Covers #1, the music that comes out of (multifaceted) LA and the focus for the next LP.
Interview by Aycan Satır – Photo by Aaron Giesel
Californian band Allah-Las released a new covers EP named Covers #1 in the beginning of November, following their 2016 album Calico Review. The EP includes 4 tracks “Fish On the Sand” by George Harrison, an unreleased song from the band Television’s Marquee Moon recording sessions “Hard On Love”, “J.O. Eleven” by 90s LA cult band Further and “Earth Won’t Hold Me” by Kathy Heideman.
The band recently took stage at Desert Daze Festival in Joshua Tree California, where a part of our team attended. We had the chance to ask some questions to Pedrum Siadatian, the band’ lead guitarist and singer.
You’re releasing a series of cover albums, the first one was released in November. How did this idea first come up?
It was suggested by our record label and we thought it would be a fun thing to do, so we covered some songs we were really into.
How did you choose the songs to cover? Were they the ones that you have been already playing for fun or did you discuss the songs and really dig into a research?
No, we hadn’t played them before. Once we were all onboard with doing the covers EP, we started brainstorming about songs we could do justice to and would sound cool with our production style.
You had recorded Calico Review in a historic studio. You recorded Covers #1 at Pump House studio in Topanga Canyon. Was there anything special about this studio to tell us?
It’s just a small backhouse studio run by Kyle Mullarky. It’s cool recording there because it’s an intimate and pressure-free environment to try different things and take our time.
Did you record this album live in the studio as well like in your previous albums?
Yeah, we always record bass, drums, and guitar live.
You always have very interesting album covers. Can you tell me who drew the cover for Covers #1 and the idea behind it?
Robbie Simon drew up that logo, it’s a very simple, modern take on classic western imagery, which we’ve incorporated into our artwork in the past. We’ve worked with Robbie on all of our records, as well as lots of our show posters.
Are there any plans for a European tour?
We don’t have any European tour plans right now, but definitely will tour there in 2018.
Your music, your lyrics, your attitude is associated quite often with California. Not every band is associated with a specific location or culture. How does a certain music become attached to a location in your opinion?
I think Southern California and Los Angeles, especially, is full of people who move here looking to fulfill a dream. Most often unsuccessfully. Los Angeles is multifaceted in the sense that there’s an association with warmth, sun, celebrity and beach culture, but there’s also a lot of ugliness, concrete, disillusion, and isolation. The best music that comes out of LA incorporates both of those things. Bleak chic.
Did you have a chance to watch any bands at Desert Daze Festival? Any highlights?
I got to see a few bands, Babe Rainbow, Spiritualized and Iggy Pop were really fantastic.
And lastly, how many other cover albums will follow after the first one?
We may do one or two more, but our focus right now is working on originals for the next LP.