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INTERVIEW: Clark Kent’s Rock and Roll Revue #009 Meet The St Pierre Snake Invasion (Part 1 of 2)

Sub-edited by Kate Shall

 ‘The custom of making musicians seem like mythical beings is too ingrained into popular culture for us to be an answer to anything.’ – Damien Sayell

The St Pierre Snake Invasion play noisy catchy Rock and Roll. Yes! More to the point, their singer has quite a bit to say on modern music and our celebrity fixated culture. Not that deflated balloon again I hear you cry – relax! Damien’s anger at the current status quo breathes new life into the subject and coupled with our mutual interest in slagging off Simon Cowell’s opportunism, the below interview makes for intriguing reading for the old fan and curious newbies alike. Welcome The Invasion…

Points raised during discussion: So Solid Crew (I shit you not), Old Dirty Bastard and Miley Cyrus. Oh, and Simon Cowell’s rectum…good name for an album. You read it here first.


The St Pierre Snake Invasion - Refauxlution

John Clay a.k.a Clark Kent

So - devil's advocate time... your band has a significant issue with pop music's take on Rock and Roll. Why? Surely there is room for everybody?


Damien Sayell

I wouldn't say it was limited to pop music's take but more so rock music's, or a dickhead's take on rock music. Rock stardom, pedestals' and such.


John Clay

Are St Pierre Snake Invasion the answer? I'd say so, but tell me more.


Damien Sayell

I wouldn't have thought so. The custom of making musicians seem like mythical beings is too ingrained into popular culture for us to be an answer to anything. Not that we strive or expect to be or have any answers.


John Clay

And answers like that are why, ironically, you'll have many people believing in you. I hear a big influence from The Stooges, although considering your pick of genre, it's arguable that one can't escape the bludgeoning enchantment of Iggy and his fine troupe. So here's my question: Will you ever 'genre hop’, or would that mean some kind of musical sacrilege has taken place?


Damien Sayell

As a band maybe not, but who knows. The newer stuff I’m writing is quite removed from our current sound. I can’t really see us having So Solid Crew on the third album, maybe a hologram of O.D.B. though.


John Clay

HAHAHA! Gotta love that O.D.B hologram magic. The attitude you have to what is current, facile and ultimately worthless is novel though. So many bands seem to want to find their way up Simon Cowell's rectum it makes me feel old to suggest that the music one does is more important than the supposed reward of superstardom. When did it all go wrong? The 1990s was such a wonderful experience...


Damien Sayell

Fuck knows, it’s been around for decades, wanting to be a famous rock star instead of an artist. Pop Idol just tapped into that. Big Brother was the catalyst, but British culture is rife with it anyway. Something for nothing, or the least amount of effort needed to attain it. It’s easier to stand in a queue for ten days and sing in front of a panel of has-beens than it is to learn an instrument and play shit loads of gigs, in hundreds of shitholes to a small number of shit people with shittier attitudes...and then go to work all week and do it all again on the weekend.


Damien Sayell kickstarting some audience participation as some gormless guy in specs and dreads looks on in the background. Probably some twatty journ...hey...wait a minute...

Picture By Rebecca Cleal

John Clay

I think you're right about Pop Idol tapping into what was already there. I do remember that music sales in the late 90s began dropping off...Cowell and his minions took advantage of that. Give the public what they need, not what they want say I. What they need having the better shelf life. When I saw you guys play, you were offstage for the ENTIRE gig. I've never seen that before. Wanna walk us through the reasoning why?

  • Today


Damien Sayell

Sorry for the delay [this interview was taking place whilst Damien was on the move/at work - CK]. Modern living and the constraints thereof. Two reasons, firstly it makes a small venue look busier if I’m out front (trick of the trade) and secondly it encourages participation, but the type which comes organically instead of me being onstage posturing shouting out fickle demands for crowds to go 'fucking crazy', or to 'get the fuck down the front'.


John Clay

Wow! Never thought about how your fourth-wall demolition can make a venue look more happening. It's all about spreading an energy, eh? The tune that got me into you guys was of course the Razorlight baiting:

The St Pierre Snake Invasion - Last Words of A Bent Cop



John Clay

Wanna tell us more about your issues with people in hats and trilbys?

Thanks for keeping this interview on the right side of conversational by the way. You won't believe the length of some people’s answers!


Damien Sayell

(I can't quite believe the length. I have to reign it in hahaha) I don't really have anything against people who wear trilbys or vests. It just happened to be the dress code of the moment when I wrote that song. It's more about how much I hate not being cool. Red hair clashes with a lot of styles you see.


John Clay

Aw c'mon, you are very cool. Perhaps because you're on the outside of what is mainstream cool? I see a big reaction against that now; people being vocally up in arms about ridiculous East London beardy-types. Do you guys jam your songs or do you present the songs to the group military style? By the way, we're making this a two part are worthy.

Picture By Rebecca Cleal

Well that's part one. Part two up in a number of days. Don't worry, we'll keep you informed.