Thursday, 17 March 2011

Norman Palm - Shore to Shore (The Interview)

Norman Palm's album Shore to Shore was released on March 14th and has been lighting up Twitter in the past three days. Despite that fact, the man himself took time out to answer a few questions for POPSICULTURE - and we're very glad that he did.

Hit up iTunes via the button below for more about the new album, or click the Read More link for Norman Palm's own take on his latest creation...

Shore To Shore - Norman Palm

How would you introduce Norman Palm the recording artist? How would you like to be perceived by your fans and newcomers to your music?

Musicwise, I still introduce myself as a singer-songwriter, although my new record does not sound like a man and his guitar at all. I focus on writing songs and lyrics - mostly simple, humble, hopefully catchy. Then I go to the studio and see what sound I can wrap these songs in. I also work in visual communication and arts; I am somewhat a DIY artist. I write, I make my own videos and artworks sometimes. My debut album was an artbook + CD, for example.

The single Sleeper was out in February. What should people expect from the rest of Shore to Shore, if they haven't already heard the album?

Sleeper is very upbeat; not all of the album tracks are that happy. The album is a pop album with a hopefully charming personal and handmade feel. 10 songs, all about love and the complications that come with it. The sound is very diverse, from acoustic to electronic, often tropical, sometimes melancholic, but mostly with a happy end.

The track $20 combines dance-like beats with what sounds like steel drums towards the end. Is that collision of modern and traditional something you like to explore in your music?

Yes, the album focuses on contrasts. We have tried to put together the very intimate and acoustic elements of my songwriting with a more cold, modern, electronic approach. $20 has a long hypnotic outro, a tribute to German Kraut music of the 70s which often looped monotone beats and themes in a meditative way. I am a big fan of this music and also other experimental repititive stuff. It was my chance to put some of that in my very straightforward pop album.

Landslide is probably my favourite track from Shore to Shore - it's just so catchy. Are there any tracks that you're particularly pleased with?

Landslide is also among my favourites. My other favourite is Easy, which is also somewhat the title track of the album. The album's title 'Shore to Shore' is a line in this song. Easy started off as a purely acoustic song, a ballad almost, written on acoustic guitar. During the studio recording it became what it is now, a stripped-down electronic track, melancholic dance music. Also the video is great, an animation film by German illustrator Frank Höhne.

In my review of Shore to Shore, I commented that every song is good enough to stand alone. Should we expect many more single releases from this album?

I hope so! That was indeed the concept of the album that songs can stand alone. I also like the idea of listening and buying single tracks which is today very common with digitally released music. I wanted to play with the two sides of making an album which has a plot and works over 40 minutes but also the elements itself, the single tracks standing and working for themselves.

What's next beyond Shore to Shore? Are you planning another album, or more touring, or is it one day at a time?

I am going on tour with my band in March-April; on March 30th we will play at Old Blue Last in London. After that we will come back to Berlin where we will work on new material. For the first time I will work with my band already at the point of writing and arranging the songs, which is exciting!

Norman Palm's album, Shore to Shore, is out now on City Slang

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