TF Archives

Sunscreem- Ten Years to the Ten Mile Bank

Author: Jonty Adderley
Friday, October 19, 2001
'The eldest is clearly very musical she's got great timing, though it will be up to her if she wants to make music," muses Paul Carnell, one half of rave/ house/ techno pioneers Sunscreem. 10 years after they first emerged as the world's first live rave act, the band comprises Paul and vocalist Lucia Holm and they're back with a new album Ten Mile Bank. The compilation is a collection of their own previously unreleased mixes plus the best from third parties over the last 3 years. Energetic, pumping and packed with proper melodies, it's a timely reminder of why they became one of the 90s' best-known dance acts.

"Having the children (Paul and singer Lucia Holm have two) was one of the reasons we dropped out of sight," Paul told Skrufff's Jonty Adderley this week. "Your perspective changes when you have children and it's a very pleasant change. You understand that the outside world is really not as important, which is a nice feeling."

Skrufff: What inspired this idea of putting out an album of remixes and white label records-

Sunscreem (Paul Carnell): "It was a happy accident, our DJ from the band happened to make a tape of a live set he was doing, which consisted of 60 minutes of 12 inches that we'd released either as promos or test pressings. We went through a phase of putting most things we'd done in the studio onto vinyl, even if it was just a few copies for ourselves. He then mixed it up, brought us the tape and we thought it constitutes an album as it is. Quite a few of these tracks haven't been available to the public before except in specialist DJ shops."

Skrufff: You sold your last album exclusively on the net, where is your strongest territory-

Sunscreem (Paul Carnell): "America, though perhaps that's just because of the sheer numbers of people. We're definitely stronger in English speaking countries such as the States, Canada and Australia and I guess that indicates that our lyrics are quite important to the way people feel about the music. It's a shame because I'd love to be popular in more exotic places too."

Skrufff: You were one of the first dance acts ever signed to a major label, how did you hook up with Sony in the first place-

Sunscreem (Paul Carnell): "We played a couple of rave type parties and saw that it was obviously working, then within 6 gigs the major record companies starting jumping up and down and we had a deal signed just 8 months after the initial idea to form a group. It was bizarre but good because we started doing tours and also developing our equipment, to enable us to play semi live on stage with sequencers. We ended up being very good live and it became one of our great strengths, though it also created a lot of pressure. I think destiny had a lot to do with it and I must say it's a damned sight easier to go with the flow and follow your destiny rather than trying to fight for something different."

Skrufff: Looking back over the last 10 years, how much have you made your own luck-

Sunscreem (Paul Carnell): "Luck's a strange thing, we tend to prefix the word with the adjectives good or bad and I'm not sure if that's what luck is about. It's more about understanding that whatever happens to you next is actually the most perfect thing that could be happening to you for your own advancement. Once you're thinking like that, you don't really have bad luck anymore."

Skrufff: Do you still go raving or clubbing these days-

Sunscreem (Paul Carnell): "Oh yes though we are a little schizophrenic in our lifestyle. We live in the country in the middle of nowhere basically on a small holding (tiny farm). At heart we like the idea of being self-sufficient small farmers, living in fairly peasant like conditions. We don't have central heating, we've got chickens and two goats. I like that life combined with popping out and making music. When people come to our house they're usually expecting a hi-tech environment and the studio is, but everywhere else isn't. Our water is piped