Norwegian stoner punk rockers Bokassa have just dropped their Molotov Rocktail album onto the rock world and, ahead of their UK tour later this month, we spoke to bassist Bård Linga about such important subjects as who has the best dance moves in the band. Read on to find out more.
Thanks for your time; how is life treating you at the moment?
Bård Linga: “No probs! Life is good, pretty busy these days with the album release, making content and doing interviews and all. We’re rehearsing a lot and looking forward to getting back on tour. Things are looking up these days, and morale is high in the Bokassa camp.”
It’s been a tough eighteen months for many people; how has life been for Bokassa?
“It’s been strange for sure, our daily operations have been quite different due to the uncertainty around everything and we’ve been left with a lot of time to fill since there have been little to no gigs to play. We’ve been doing our best to keep busy though. We’ve spent a lot of time working on new material and practising, to make sure we’re well prepared for times to come.”
You’ve just dropped your awesome new single, taken from the equally ace new album. Tell us about the idea behind the video?
“To be honest, we just wanted a dancing number and fancy suits, haha! We didn’t go as story-driven for this one as we did with the two previous videos we did in the run-up for the album, so this video is more like a collage of visual concepts.”
When you hit the local rock bar after a show, who has the best dance moves in the band?
“Haha! We’re more likely to just sit around and crack jokes when we head out, as we try to keep the dancing to strictly professional occasions. We did pull out some dance moves once though, but our freestyle moves are all of such a bottom-of-the-barrel quality that I don’t think it’s possible to grade.”
Speaking of shows, you’re going to be coming back to the UK shortly; can we expect choreographed dance moves as part of the show now?
“Only way to find out is to come to the show! (But please don’t be disappointed if there are no dance moves)”
As we said, the new album is also out, can you tell us what a “Molotov Rocktail” is?
“First it was just a pun, some say the greatest pun of all time*. But now it’s actually a drink as well, the bar where we had the listening party made it. It’s red and very spicy. *(I was the one who said that)”
Given the mix of styles, it sounds like it sums up Bokassa’s sound quite nicely?
“We do like to mix styles. It keeps things fresh and we always try to have a surprise around the corner for when you think you’ve figured the song out.”
Tell us about the incredible artwork – where did that idea come from?
“This is going to be the most millennial answer you’ve ever gotten to this question. When we’re brainstorming artwork we just browse the Instagram profiles of visual artists we like until we find something we love, and then we ask if we can use it. This one in particular is made by Moon Patrol. Check him out, his stuff is great!”
And what about the themes of some of the songs? “Pitchforks R Us,” “Immortal Space Pirate 3 Too Old For This Sith.” Sounds like you had a lot of fun writing this record?
“I’m but a simple bass player, and I can barely read, let alone interpret the inner workings of these lyrical paragons!”
On a more serious note, how challenging was it to write an album during lockdown?
“I think actually the lockdown aspect served the songwriting pretty well. With more time you have more opportunity for fine adjustments and finesse, so in that regard, I don’t think the impact of the lockdown made it more challenging.”
And now that we move back to the norm, what are your plans for 2021 and beyond?
“We’re going on a Norwegian tour this September and then we’re doing UK and Europe in October. After that, we’ll try our best to make up for lost time with more tours and more music.”
You’re back in the UK next year for Download Festival. Excited to be playing on the same day as KISS?
“As a former festival stage crew guy, I’m just excited that I don’t have to wade through all the wet confetti afterwards to pack the gear up!”
Thanks for your time, good luck with everything. Over to you to wrap this up…
“Thank you very much, and likewise! I’m a bad up-wrapper so I’m just going to plug the album! Check out Molotov Rocktail, it’s out on all the things and people say it’s good! Oh, and also check our tour dates on bokassaband.com, we could be playing just around the corner and you would never know!”
10/13 – Southampton – The Engine Rooms
10/14 – Manchester – Rebellion
10/16 – Dublin – Grand Social
10/17 – Belfast – Voodoo
10/19 – Glasgow – Audio
10/20 – Wolverhampton – KK’s Steel Mill
10/21 – Cardiff – The Globe
10/22 – London – The Underworld