We recently caught up with Frank Carter, arguably one of the most charismatic frontmen around. His new album "Modern Ruin" is out now and if you thought their debut album was good, wait until you get a load of this one! "Modern Ruin" combines everything you liked about their debut and Frank's - unfortunately - short-lived Pure Love project. We could keep rattling on about the album, but we prefer to let him do the talking.
PRT: “Modern Ruin” sounds quite different from your last album. Whereas “Blossom” seemed to be one big, cathartic blastfest, the new albums is decidedly more moody. Is that something you were aiming for or is that just what came out when you started writing new material?
Frank: We wrote both Blossom and Modern Ruin in the same year so it was a very natural process. We were definitely trying to make music that had a different sound from Blossom as we wanted to make certain that our first two records had enough variety for us to have an exciting future.
PRT: Following your departure from Gallows, you started Pure Love and released the “Anthems” album. It seemed like people were expecting it to be equally aggressive as Gallows and as a result, didn’t know what to make of it. Were you at all worried that the same thing would happen with “Modern Ruin”?
Frank: I wasn’t worried before it came out. I rarely worry about what people think about my music. As long as I feel like I have challenged myself and made a record I am proud of then that’s all I care about.
PRT: Is this simply another side of Frank Carter or do you feel you have become less angry? And if the latter is true, do you think being a parent has anything to do with that?
Frank: Being a parent has definitely changed my perspective on everything. It’s not that I have become less angry. As a human being I am a complicated individual and I think as I get older I try and channel more of the layers that make up myself.
PRT: Personally, I think “Lullaby” is one of the best songs you have written so far… can you tell me a bit more about where that one came from?
Frank: I wrote it at 4 in the morning after my newborn daughter fell asleep in my arms while I was singing her a lullaby. I went back to bed with a smile on my face and I wrote for an hour and the song was finished.
PRT: The last time we talked, you mentioned you liked to paint. And you are of course a tattoo artist as well. Are your music and visual arts two things you like to keep separate? Or would you at some point like to combine them in one way or another?
Frank: I combine them constantly. I tattoo designs based on my songs and lyrics, and I write songs in a very visual manner so I think all aspects of my creativity influence the others.
PRT: Your live shows are always an absolute pleasure to watch and some of the most entertaining I’ve seen in the last couple of years. Do you have an idea of what you will be up to before the show or is it more a spur of the moment kind of thing?
Frank: I never plan. I just walk out on stage and I feel the vibe. I try and work using the energy from the crowd and if the crowd is a little dry then I will use that challenge to try and liven them up. It’s an interesting juxtaposition and one that ends up making our shows feel very much like the final atmosphere of the show is built from both sides… the stage and the audience.
PRT: I have to ask… what’s with the floral suit?
Frank: What’s NOT with the floral suit!
PRT: Not to get too political here, but now that the Brexit is a fact… do you already have an idea of what this will entail for touring in Europe as a British band?
Frank: No Idea. We will just keep touring in whatever capacity we can. All I can say is I feel very sad for my country taking such a short-sighted and backwards decision.
PRT: Last question… what’s up next for Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes now that the album is out?
Frank: The album is out and it went top ten in the UK charts! Now we are just touring, touring, touring. I can’t wait to play these songs for everyone.