Since about 2009 Clock Opera have taken the pop sensibility’s eye for a good – if not unforgettable – melody (that at its worst was pushing out serious post-Parachutes Coldplay albums, at its best, Belle & Sebastian) and spliced it with a nuanced, frenetic electronica with mixed-up instrumentation, layered sampling and keen-eye production.
 
After turning heads with a string of singles starting with White Noise/Alouette on Puregroove Records, the London-based outfit, led by Guy Connelly, are getting ready to release their debut album, Ways to Forget, on April 9. It's set to mix the excitement of their single efforts with a fuller studio sound, and at Substance we're excited.
 
Just days before the album hit the shops, we caught up with Guy by email to ask him about DJing, the album and musical jostling.
 
1. What does this mix tell us about what you've got in store on Ways to Forget? 
 
Some of these tracks are songs we have always loved and which have been playing in the background of our minds when writing our album. So I guess there must be some atmospheres and vapours floating around this mix which you might recognise on the record. Others we've only just heard, so who knows what effect they'll have. 
 
2. There's a bit of a jostling between melody and beats here: is that one of Clock Opera’s internal struggles? 
 
We are equally inspired by electronic music and unforgettable melodies, wherever they are found. And yes, fitting them together successfully into songs that affect people is one of the things we aspire to do. Sometimes this does require a bit of jostling. 
 
3. Apparently you're a "late adopter" with music: who've you found in a big way recently? 
 
This is beyond late, but I'm spending a lot of time with Peter Gabriel lately. People often compare us to artists whose music I don't know very well at all, like him. So I like to listen to them, partly to see if it's a compliment and partly to discover how we've come to make similar sounding music. I'm very happy with any Peter Gabriel connections, if you were wondering.
 
4. You've said elsewhere you play the Moderat tune every time you DJ, but there’s Steve Reich and Eno on here too - what other sort of stuff do you play in clubs? 
 
Quite a range. Andy [bass, guitar, synths] plays a lot of sparse electro and then I'll generally ruin his momentum by playing an off-kilter Brian Eno song. Breton have just done a great remix of our new single Man Made, so that's definitely going to get a spin soon.
 
5. What's next for the band? 
 
Our UK tour starts on 9th April, then we're playing a load of festivals over the summer in Europe and beyond. I've never known what I'm doing with my life so far in advance. All shows, festivals & meal times will be advertised in good time at http://clockopera.com/tour-dates/
 
Listen to Clock Opera’s mix here. 
 
Clock Opera Substance Mix by substance.tv
 
 Tracklisting:
 
1. Jagwar-Ma – Come Save Me
2. The Walker Bro.s – The Electrician
3. Moderat – A New Error
4. Mozart Parties – Where Has Everybody Gone?
5. Steve Reich – Dance Patterns
6. Gil Scott-Heron and Jamie xx – My Cloud
7. Elliott Smith – Everything Means Nothing to Me
8. Stevie Wonder – All Day Sucker
9. Brian Eno – Drift
 

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