ARTICLE NATASHA STAGG
PHOTOGRAPHY AMANDA CHARCHIAN
PAZ LENCHANTIN'S MIDAS TOUCH TURNS ALL ROCK & ROLL INTO GOLD, WHICH MEANS SHE'LL BE BRIGHTENING UP AN ALREADY SHIMMERING MEDAL NOW THAT SHE'S OFFICIALLY TOURING WITH THE PIXIES (ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY, DECEMBER 9TH)
From A Perfect Circle to Zwan to The Entrance Band, Lenchantin has not only shredded with the best of them, she is the best of them. On top of playing an impressive range of instruments and being in high demand throughout multiple genres (see, too, her work with Melissa Auf der Maur and Jenny Lewis), she has always been in control of her own image. Case in point, this collaboration with Amanda Charchian, premiering here on VMAGAZINE.COM now: the video for The Entrance Band's "No Needs"/fashion film for clothing line Sister Jane. We caught up with the codirectors on the inspirations for this work of art and on an unbelievably busy year ahead.
Paz, you've always been very hands-on with your bands, meaning, you actually do the work: making the music, and for example, with The Entrance Band, directing the music videos.
PAZ LENCHANTIN Honestly, we have very little choice but to do everything ourselves. The Entrance Band has given me great opportunities not only to write and perform music but it's also influenced me to make little films with our music. And I enjoy shooting very much.
What's been different about working with the Entrance Band than with past projects?
PL The Entrance band was created on stage at our first show and is still being created at our current shows. We never used a practice space, we had our first practice on stage in front of an audience. It was being created as people watched it be created in a pure form. We booked more shows and kept on playing. We are a trio; we can not exist without one another. It wouldn't be The Entrance Band if one of us was not in the band.
And what are The Entrance Band's future plans, now that you'll also be playing with The Pixies?
PL I am going to have a very busy 2014. To end 2013, The Entrance Band is going to NYC to play Webster hall on December 11th, and and we're going to play a secret show at a secret spot on the 12th. The 12th is my birthday! We will start touring tour new LP, Face The Sun in March 2014 and continue all next year. You can say I'm homeless.
For this video, who were your inspirations, and how did it come about?
PL Surrealist art, mostly photography, such as Leonor Fini, Lee Miller, Man Ray, and Francesca Woodman. [Hairdresser] Bob Recine came out with a book [Alchemy of Beauty] that was extremely inspiring to me, not that I touched hair at all for this video. More so, I got my inspiration from the photographs taken of his hair sculptures. And Amanda and i watched a beautiful film, By A Waterfall (1933)—a sequence of synchronized swimming.
AMANDA CHARCHIAN We definitely wanted to get across the feeling that there was a unity, a synchronization coming out of six unique bodies. The film features a Futuro House designed by Matti Suuronen that acts as a spaceship the rainbow bodies descend from. Busby Berkeley's By A Waterfall and Esther Williams in Bathing Beauty were definitely influential.
PL There was a fire in my hometown of Idyllwild, California last summer. I went there during the fire to save all of my things from burning. The vision of ash everywhere (of black, of grey) reminded me of surrealist black and white photographs. I wanted to incorporate the dramatic black, grey, and white that came from the fire but with a playful burst of vivacious color. Then, Amanda [Charchian] needed to find a location for a photo shoot she was doing for clothing designer Sister Jane, and the dresses she was shooting were crayon bright. I told her my idea of the fire remains on the mountain in Idyllwild and how fantastic it would look contrasting that with some sonic, bright colors. So, I asked Amanda and Sister Jane if they would be interested in an Entrance Band music video collaboration, directed by Amanda and myself.
Paz, I'm curious if you tend to get asked the "how does it feel to be female in the music industry?"-type questions a lot, and if it bothers you.
PL Yes, that tends to be the number one question. Gender is interesting. I do not know how it feels to be a man to be able compare myself to one. But I am inspired by both man and woman and also by transgender. I love Wendy Carlos! She did all the music for A Clockwork Orange. She was once a man.