We got a chance to talk with Pete Lawrie-Winfield of Until the Ribbon Breaks for an exclusive interview discussing the start of their music career, their Run the Jewels collaboration, and a one of a kind film score mixtape.
Until the Ribbon Breaks, consists of Pete Lawrie-Winfield (lead vocals, percussion, and brass), James Gordon (synths), and Elliot Wall (drums). We got a chance to chat with Pete before the band hits the road to open for London Grammar.
Ferrvor: How did UTRB come together? Did you three know each other growing up, or did you guys meet along the way?
Pete: I had a unique sound growing up when I first started making music which eventually developed into Until the Ribbon Breaks. I’ve known Elliot for a long time, since we were little, and met James a little later. They both came on and have helped both the band, and our sound grow.
Ferrvor: When you were growing up you were raised on folk and singer-songwriter music, but the first music you started making was hip hop. What influenced you to venture down that route?
Pete: I started skateboarding when I was younger, and in that scene, music was a huge influence on everyone. I would listen to a lot of New York and East Coast hip hop, but DJ Shadow changed everything for me. His instrumentals allowed for me to create my own picture to the music.
Ferrvor: Your music videos aren’t even music videos, we would like to call them ‘musical films.’ The ability to match your music to the same mood conveyed in each movie is surreal, and has us craving more. How do you choose which films to edit into your videos?
Pete: I’ve loved films my entire life, and thats what I went to school for. Its really about the mood of the film, and if it matches the mood of the music being made.
Ferrvor: You use a lot of films directed by David Lynch and Terrance Malick and incorporate them into your videos. Who are some other directors that inspire you to create your art?
Pete: There’s no specific directors, really. It could be anyone, as long as the mood of their film matches ours. With our video for “Goldfish” we actually found a documentary that displayed the mystery of nature, and was what we wanted to go along with our song. It allows for the viewer to truly get lost in the sights and mystery of the world, as they can relate to the story in the song.
Ferrvor: Is there any film in particular you would like to incorporate into one of your videos?
Pete: No, not necessarily any one film. Something that would be really cool would be to collaborate with a director and help score the film. Apparently the director for Romeo and Juliet, Baz Luhrmann, saw our video for “Romeo” and actually liked it. It would be an honor to actually get to score a film.
Ferrvor: On the upcoming album, A Lesson Unlearnt, you have a collaboration with Run the Jewels, on the song “Revolution Indifference.” How did that partnership develop between you two?
Pete: We were actually lucky on this. They reached out to us for their first EP to work together on the track “Job Well Done.” We both like each others’ music so we have a mutual respect for one another and what we do. I reached out to them for this song, as I thought their sound would be perfect for the message and sound created already, and it worked pretty well!
Ferrvor: We’ve read that American Beauty is your all time favorite film score. Are there any recent film scores that have stood out to you?
Pete: The scores for Gravity, Inherent Vice, and There Will Be Blood were all really good! I actually don’t listen to much music other than scores. The only music with vocals I really listen to is hip hop, and then mainly just scores. I will listen to a score and then write lyrics to them, creating moods afterwards and then coming out with the final product.
Ferrvor: Your new album, A Lesson Unlearnt, releases on January 20, 2015. What is your favorite track on the album?
Pete: One of the new songs, “Orca,” is probably my favorite. It’s a brand new track, so nobody has actually heard this one.
Ferrvor: The band’s name refers to playing a mixtape or cassette so much, that the actual ribbon inside breaks. If you were to make us a mixtape for the winter, what would be on it?
Pete: I haven’t really listened to much new music this year. I did love the new El-P and Killer Mike album, Run the Jewels 2, which could very well be the top rap project of the year. I don’t think I could make a mixtape with new music, but I could try to do one with parts of scores! I would come up with certain scenes, or maybe the end titles of my ten favorites. My favorite end title is the one for The Thin Red Line, and the mixtape would open with that. Then I’m not sure right now what the middle would be, but I would close it with Brooks’ scene in Shawshank Redemption.
Make sure to check out their new album, A Lesson Unlearnt, on January 20 and see them live alongside London Grammar! You can find their tour dates listed on their website here.