Door Sebastiaan van den Bovenkamp
Another one bites the dust. Het zijn roerige tijden voor muzikanten. In grote getale leggen bands het bijltje erbij neer. Na vijf lange jaren heeft ook het Britse The Elijah geen energie meer voor deze luxe. Tourbus in, tourbus uit. Iedere avond een nieuw publiek overwinnen. Waarvoor? Dat is de grote vraag bij de ambient post-hardcoreband. De vraag wordt beantwoord in een gesprek na hun afscheidstournee.
Your break-up was as unexpected as tragic. After only one album, you called it quits. What happened?
We got to the point as a band where we felt that the album we had created and the album show we had played were both perfect. Even though we carried on as a band after both of them I think we knew as a band it would be difficult to ever beat. When we were offered the Being As An Ocean tour we knew this would be the biggest tour we’d ever done. So it seemed the perfect way to end it. We were all friends before we started the band and we’ll continue to be friends when the band is over. It was a mutual thing between the five of us.
Is it harder to survive as a band nowadays?
There have been tours were we have struggled, for us during the last years. It was never financial problems or anything like that but sometimes the shows we were playing and the venues just didn’t seem right for us and it got quite difficult to carry on wanting to tour.
During these tough times, you still managed to stick around for five years, releasing excellent music and touring all over the world. What are the achievements you are most proud of?
Our full length album will always be a huge achievement for us all, we spent about six months working on the album in an old mansion which really shaped how the album came out. When we played our album in full with a string quartet, that will always be our favourite show. So much work went into that behind the scenes and when the show was over we were so proud of what we had achieved. When we started out as a band all we wanted to do was go on tour for weeks at a time and the fact we’ve been able to do that for so many years and get to see so many countries together is a huge achievement. I’m sure in a few years its something we’ll appreciate alot more.
What will everyone in the band be doing when this tour ends?
A lot of us in the band have jobs now that have started because of the band and over the last year they have become more and more important and something that was requiring more time so that is what we’ll carry on doing.
Whatever the reason may be that you’re quitting, that moment when you played your last show must be very hard.
We played our last UK show last night and it was pretty emotional for us all. But it was easily one of the best show’s we’ve ever played. It was back in the Underworld which is our favourite venue to play so it was a perfect send off for us and the crowd was amazing. The show felt like the end.
What message would you like to share with starting bands?
I think bands need to try and do something more original. I keep seeing/hearing bands that all seem to be doing the same thing, all trying to be the latest band that have gotten big.