Twee is back and it’s fitting that the internet, where a keyboard-playing cat is worshipped as a god, should have a hand in its resurrection. The cute, late-'80s precursor to indie rock, twee was precious and raucous, poor fidelity and rich in whimsy. Now bands like Internet Forever are channeling its precocious spirit into songs that are as sweet and fuzzy as peaches bathing in a sea of kittens on a planet made of marshmallow. "Pages of Books" is an exclusive track from the trio’s forthcoming debut single. We emailed each other about Livejournal and “lolz."
Download: Internet Forever, "Pages of Books"
Did you guys meet on the internet?
Laura Wolf: Me and Heartbeeps were friends on the internet for years before starting this band. One day he commented on this blog I used to write saying "I want to start a band called Internet Forever." The next weekend we met IRL for the first time and wrote the song 3D in his living room. I've known Christopher for years and collaborated with him on previous projects and so when we needed another member to help us play live he was the first person I thought of asking.
Christopher Alcxxk: Actually me and Laura kinda met through the internet too, except it then turned out that we'd already met in a club about a year before.
Sometimes I think it'd be amazing if the internet disappeared overnight. If you knew it was going to happen, what would you save?
LW: It would be amazing because I'd get more done. I'd definitely back up the six years of Livejournal entries I have made, so that I could laugh at my past neuroses and mistakes.
Heatbeeps: For me it would be any documentation of my life that I have on the internet, which is mostly my flickr photos and the Livejournal I kept while living abroad. I'd probably also get the postal addresses of all my friends and start writing letters.Life without the internet would be very liberating. I think I went two weeks without going online once. It was great.
CA: I'm tempted to say I'd save Last.fm or Hype Machine or even MySpace's servers so I could have stuff to listen to for the rest of my life, but then I remember how much more I used to enjoy listening to music back when I used to have about 100 cds and could obsess and learn about them in depth before moving on, instead of disposable mp3s. But then again, that might just have been because i was 16 and had naff all to do with my time. So I dunno. I'd probably save a load of outdated youtube lolz like this and this and this and this.
Tell us about your solo work.
HB: I was a fan of Laura's solo work from when she first put songs online that were recorded on her phone. I saw it as basically a female-voiced version of what I was doing—Casiotone For The Painfully Alone-esque bedroom pop.
CA: Laura's solo stuff is the closest to IF, but generally it isn't as loud or distorted. In fact the newest song in our set is just a reworking of one of her solo tunes, cos with Heartbeeps living in Cambridge, rehearsal time isn't too plenteous, so sometimes we've just got to do the things that take the least time to prepare. My solo stuff isn't very much like IF at all—it's mainly slightly funny, slightly bitter country folk pop songs.
HB: My solo stuff is mostly on the backburner for now, while things are happening with the band. Chris and I also have a 8-bit side project, Trevor and Simon & Garfunkel. Apart from that,I'm spending most of my non-IF time working on some photography projects.
Your music is pretty broken-hearted. Have you all been through the mill a bit?
LW: All the broken heartedness is probably my fault because I'm the person that writes the lyrics. I'm fine now, thanks.
"Good at songs, bad at fidelity"—does that still hold true?
LW: That was a quote we liked from a blog, not our mission statement or anything... I think it's definitely true of the recordings that people have heard. We never set out to be intentionally lo-fi, we just used what was available to us and instruments with a lot of overdrive. The new stuff is recorded better, but with the instruments we use it's never gonna sound really clean.
Tell us about "Pages of Books".
LW: I wrote this song last summer. I was trying to write something different from the normal stuff I write and started with the percussion and glock, rather than the keyboard like I usually would. I wrote the lyrics a few weeks later after me and my housemate were talking about how her friend had just discovered Catcher In The Rye at the age of 22 and had gone nuts about it.
HB: This version was recorded a few weeks ago and will be the b-side to "Cover the Walls" on our 7-inch in September. It's the first time we've put something that we recorded in a studio online, and you can definitely see a progression from our self-recorded output thus far. The original version was recorded on Garageband and sent back and forth between me and Laura last summer. I remember recording the guitars in Eastbourne, right before I left for two months in India. The first time I heard the finished version, I was sat in an internet cafe in the Thar Desert, with only one headphone working.
What's next for you guys?
LW: We have lots of releases coming up. Art Fag are releasing "Break Bones" and "3D" on a 7-inch soon in the US. We're gonna be on a split tape that Sexbeat are releasing and at the end of September and "Cover the Walls" will be released in the UK. We are going to go on a UK tour around then and do a BBC session for Huw Stephens around that time too.
HB: The Huw Stephens session will be broadcast on September 23rd, and "Cover the Walls" will be released through Twenty Years of Boredom Records on September 28th as a 7-inch and download. The tour will be sometime around the end of October.
CA: The gig I'm most looking forward to at the moment is Our Band Could BBQ Your Life. It's a two day event, with every band doing half their own stuff and half by band's from my favourite book ever, Our Band Could Be Your Life. We're doing Beat Happening, appropriately enough, and there's stuff like Winnebago Deal as Black Flag and Ice Sea Dead People as Minor Threat. 8th (and 9th) August, Brixton Windmill. We keep our blog pretty up to date.