Hinds’ journey of conquering the world is still on course, turbo charged by the release of their second album I Don’t Run. The infectious attitude, personality and appeal of Hinds is a difficult thing not to get sucked up in, especially when you are making brilliant fun music to go alongside it. The success of the Madrid-based quartet is something we have never seen from a Spanish band, so we questioned guitarist and vocalist Ana Perrote about this crazy dream they are living.
Last time we spoke was a couple of days before the release of Leave Me Alone – can you remember how you were feeling then and how does it compare to the release of I Don’t Run?
ANA: I can remember we were shitting our pants! It was like, “Oh my God, we are going to release a record”, which was really exciting, but we were really nervous. I feel we are more secure now and more secure about the record itself. We are really proud of it, but we are also still nervous.
Since before the release of your debut, Hinds have been globe-trotting around the world which must be a hard thing to comprehend at times. Has there been a particular moment when you four have felt like you’re stuck in a dream?
ANA: I mean, more than a dream – sometimes it can feel like a nightmare. We had a moment before we released Leave Me Alone, and right when we released it too. We felt extremely happy and really lucky for the chances we had, especially as a band of four girls from Madrid, as no one has ever done that from Madrid. But it got to a point where we weren’t saying no to anything, any offers that were given to us. We just couldn’t say no – how do you say no to going to Japan, or doing this or that. After saying yes to everything, we quickly realised that there aren’t enough days in a year. We were getting really really tired and had a kind of break down – if we weren’t feeling okay, Hinds didn’t make sense. We are the kind of band that gives everything at our shows and give the best we can. It’s not an introspective show, we try and communicate with the audience. Learning how to say no when you are given all these opportunities is a difficult thing, but I feel we are figuring it out.
You have a very big following in America too, that must be something you never imagined?
ANA: We never even imagined the UK or the States, Asia, anywhere – we didn’t have time to dream about it. It all happened so fast. I felt like we didn’t choose this life, it chose us. Just because of two songs we started to get so many emails and tours. We toured the world before we even had the record out, so it was all really fast and crazy. No one from Spain had done that, we couldn’t have dreamed that at all. We’re very proud.
I can remember you saying you recorded the debut album in the south of Spain, which sounded like an incredibly beautiful and peaceful spot. Where did you record I Don’t Run and what was the process?
ANA: We did it in the same place. We had such a great time there on the last album, it is such a nice studio and the best environment to lose yourself from the world. We’re really good friends with the owner, who was also the engineer on the albums. When you are writing an album that is a really big stress because of the money, the clock and other pressures – that place is the best place in the world to be. It’s close to the beach, always good weather, there are dogs, the house is really nice, there’s a nice lounge where we can watch movies and documentaries after a day recording. There is a nice vibe there. What changed this time is the people we worked with. Working with producer Gordon Raphael (The Strokes) was really nice, and he agreed to let us co-produce with him. We would ask him what pedal do you think we should use and he would say the one we wanted to use. We mixed the album with Shawn Everett (John Legend, Alabama Shakes, The War On Drugs) who came to the studio to do it. That was crazy too, he’s like a musical magician. He has this process where he asked us to pick some pictures that reminded us of when we wrote the song – like when you close your eyes what do you see when you hear the song. That was really interesting for us. We chose some textures, people and landscapes – ten pictures for each song. He would spend hours with that collage of pictures in front of the computer when working.
Can you tell me about the name of the album, I Don’t Run, as it’s not a song title that features on the album?
ANA: We like to choose a sentence or words that represent the band and not the record itself, not the lyrics or a name of a song. “I don’t run”, had been stuck in our heads for about a year after our manager said it, and when chatting about what to call the album we thought I Don’t Run made perfect sense. We always thought about these “rock’n’roll rules” – live fast die young, now or never, no care for tomorrow – there was always this pressure to be this wild and crazy rock star, so we started to think that going against those rules would be even more rock’n’roll. It also represents how we did this record compared to Leave Me Alone, which was in a rush and very messy. This record was well thought out – so it’s like, we aren’t running any more, this is Hinds.
There’s no doubt that it’s going to be another crazy year for Hinds following the release of the album, and you are doing a UK tour with a date at the Concorde 2 on 20th April.
ANA: We love, love, love playing Brighton, the crowd there is the best. I remember on one of our first tours before our debut came out, we played a couple of shows in the UK including one at The Joker in Brighton. It was our best one. I think it was the first time Carlotta jumped off stage and onto our tour manager’s shoulder whilst playing the guitar. I cannot wait to be back.