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We Hung Out With Phoenix At Glastonbury

They told us they were trying to "repress the hippy".

While most bands at Glastonbury seem to come down on the Thursday night, stay in a tent and spend the whole weekend with their nostrils in a sandwich bag full of party dust, there are some that just show up for their show and then fuck off again before the traffic gets too bad. Phoenix are in the latter camp, arriving on the hottest day of the weekend looking clean, tailored and more human than everyone else. We tried to give them a hug, but they politely declined, so we asked them some questions instead. They were really nice guys and for a minute it made us want to go back with them.


This all went down before their set, which was really outstanding and full of "Glastonbury moments". You can watch it in full here.

Noisey: Are you fan of this kind of thing? You seem a bit too debonair.

Branco from Phoenix: Glastonbury is special because it's the perfect incarnation of a festival. You can feel it has some truth. Some festivals it's just a production company renting a field and packing young people in to sell very expensive beer. Here you can feel it's not the case. It's a good spirit here. The big flag thing is good. If there's only one festival to do, this is it. So we do it. We want to cross it off the list.

Do you have a hippy side to you?

We try to repress the hippy. We are more like the Velvet Underground.

So not Rolling Stones fans then?

You saw it? How was it?

It was a bit boring, they had saxophone solos that went on for twenty minutes?

Saxophone? Nooo. That is bizarre, this is a provocation.

Are you looking forward to your set?

Playing to big crowds is different from intimate venues. It can be amazing actually. Often we prefer rooms, where the energy is contained. But, sometimes, in these kind of moments, something happens. You can get a biblical moment, when the moon is high and the mood is right.

I'd imagine it's quite relaxing being in Phoenix at the moment. Everyone likes you, you just play the big shows, everything's coming up Milhouse.

No no no no! Absolutely not. It's a nightmare.


What, why?

It's a permanent quest for the perfect show, which never happens. We see the perfect show and we know we are so far from it. It's like a very high mountain and we feel we will die on the way up.

Your headlining on the Sunday night, I think a lot of people feel they will die by that point. So what are you aiming towards?

We have this big block of very beautiful marble from Italy. We have this sculpture in our head, but right now we have just a big block of marble, we know how it should be, but we also know it's going to take a lot of work. We are just chipping away right now. The problem is we only have a nail file.

Guys you're kind of killing my buzz. So much weight on your shoulders.

Yeah but we chose the block of marble and so we chose this cross we have to carry. It's a very joyful kind of nightmare, if you know what I mean?

I think you should go to the Green Field and get a massage.

Yes I saw a lot of those propositions. Getting better, feeling better. Someone's offering reiki backstage.

What really? Shit I'm going to get some of that. Alright bye Phoenix!