Marcel Le Bachelet sat down with Frank Carter hours before the finale of his sold-out tour at Koko, London to talk about the creation and reception of his new album with The Rattlesnakes, Modern Ruin.


I saw the announcement today that you're playing Glastonbury. How does that rank on The Rattlesnakes accomplishments so far?

It's up there as the pinnacle. I've never been to the festival so for me it's a massive moment in my career, but also my life. I never ever thought that the music that I played would be accepted at a festival like that, so I'm incredibly excited to get there and show them what I'm capable of. It's gonna be fun.

What's been the reception touring your new album for the first time?

It's been pretty overwhelming. Pretty phenomenal crowd response. The new songs are going down as well, if not better than the old songs. The album's only been out for a month and a bit, it's pretty mad to think it's not even been out for two months yet. People love it, there's a real affinity to the record. It's nice for us, it gives us the opportunity to play some of the quieter stuff, which is something nobody has ever really seen me and our band do, and I think people are really enjoying that. I know I am.

I've been watching it on Spotify, and I've seen you've already got as many plays on one of your new songs as you have on your entire last album.

Yeah, it's fucking crazy. It's fucking mental. I don't know what's going on. I think the record is obviously connecting with people and we've been building the idea that we're an important live band to watch and those two things go hand in hand. I think with rock music if you have one but you don't have the other you're never gonna quite break through. What we're seeing now is we have the opportunity to break through in quite a big way. So we're just gonna take it.

Obviously the new album has a different sound to the old one. How would you describe the difference?

It's tough for me because we wrote them in the same year, and they were recorded not far apart either - they were recorded in under 12 months. For me that was always our initial intention, to have a 20-track output that was vastly diverse and had a lot of layers and a lot of depth to it, that would allow us a platform big enough to kind of do whatever we wanted in the future. It's about what's coming next, but how do you describe it? I guess just as part 1. and part 2. of a massive plan of world domination [Laughs]

Are there any favourites off the new album to play live?

Yeah, I really like playing vampires, it's just like it sits in my range really well, I can kind of play that with my eyes shut. 'Neon Rust' is a big moment for me, and also 'Bluebelle' which is weird because I can't really play guitar so it's kind of been a bit of a mess every single night I've played but it's kind of who I am, and hey - I've only been playing guitar for a year, so I'm not doing too bad.

Was the writing process for the new album different? And did you record it in the same place?

We recorded it in exactly the same place, with slightly different musicians; but the same producer, same studio and all the songs were written in the same place. What we wanted to do was to do kind of an acid test, take most of the same components but push ourselves to make vastly different music - to show that it's about what you know, not who you're playing with. We had the opportunity to make Blossom which was an incredibly cathartic, violent, explosive record, and then make Modern Ruin, which is a little more refined. It's got a lot more control, and we've shown restraint in the right places, but it doesn't lack power. So for us, it was always about presenting both of those as early as we could to show that 'these are some of the facets of us.' I don't know what the future holds, but this is who we are in this year and it changes constantly. Who knows what we'll do next time? Probably just more fun. We just wanna have fun.

You've been with a couple of different bands now. Do you think Rattlesnakes is definitely the one?

Third time's a charm, why not hey! It seems to me like my fan base is understanding this better than anybody else has, and for me, it's enabled me to lay everything, all the styles of music that I like. We play hardcore songs, we play rock songs we've even got drifty songs. That's all the music that I love in one place.

Yeah it's a treat. I saw the other day that you did a bit of presenting for Beats 1 Radio, is that something you're going to pursue more in the future or was it just a one-off?

I think as it comes up, I really enjoy it. It was a weird one because I didn't really know what we were doing until we got there. I try not to prep too much for these things, but it was really fun, I do enjoy it. I just don't know if I've got enough time to really pursue it seriously, but as and when it comes up I think I'll try and make the most of it. Why not? It's fun, life is for living! I try and turn as few things down as possible because you never really know what's gonna lead to where, and I enjoy most things I'm doing so that was really fun. I got to speak to James Lavelle for an hour. That's fucking crazy.

Yeah definitely, and speaking of side projects, have you got anything else coming up? You've just been ramping up your artwork at the moment.

Yeah, so art is something that's been in my life a long time, and I've been trying to take that more seriously this year. But apart from that, I've got enough on my plate with that and music and having a two-year-old, so I mean... I'm just trying to fucking survive [laughs.] For me the focus this year is on Rattlesnakes and about playing Modern Ruin in the widest capacity we can, and in the meantime just enjoy whatIi'm doing with the art.

Lastly, for the summer coming up, which festivals (apart from Glastonbury obviously) are you looking forward to?

Reading and Leeds, I grew up going to that festival so it's always a massive moment to play there. We're playing a few smaller ones, well they're not really that small, but we've got Y-Not And 2000 Trees. We've got pretty good slots on both those festivals. There's so many in Europe that I'm excited to get to, we're playing Rock Im Park in Germany, as well as Werchter and Lowlands.

Sounds like you've got a big summer ahead of you?

Yeah man, it's definitely going that way.

Modern Ruin is out now.