After leaving the highly successful indie rock group The Dears, Patrick Krief took centre stage with his own band, Black Diamond Bay. This past year Black Diamond Bay released their first, full-length, Calm Awaits. Krief is back from a Canada-wide tour, and ready to play their first Montreal show in seven months at the sold-out Sala Rossa.
Q: Did you know there’s a band from Leeds called Black Diamond Bay?
Krief: Yes, it’s been brought to my attention. But, we are not too worried about their existence.
Q: Is there room in the world for two Black Diamond Bays?
A: There’s room in the world for one that you know of and one that you never heard of. So when we get to that point we’ll figure out which is which.
Q: You were the guitarist of the Dears for five years, what prompted you to leave?
A: It wasn’t an extreme “I’m out of here fuck this,’ it was just that I didn’t have time to do the two things, Black Diamond Bay and The Dears. I didn’t have time to juggle the two because there was a lot of touring involved.
Q: Were you originally setting out to start a solo project?
A: I made a record under the name Krief, which is my last name, in 2007. That’s how Black Diamond Bay assembled. It was me getting people together to play that record live and that evolved.
Q: Your song “Brothers in Exile” is reminiscent of the Beatles’ White Album sound, and “First Time I See You Again” is real fifties soul, do you go into some songs with a reference in mind?
A: “Brothers in Exile” was just kind of an angry song that has some references to Concordia actually. I was once a student there. But, no I never think like that. It’s funny because the working title for “First Time I See You Again” was “Fifties” because I felt that it had a super early soul or doo-wop sound. I actually called it “Fifties” until I had a name for the song. Sometimes I try to pull away from where it’s born. If it’s really too fifties I’ll try to pull away from the fifties. Let’s make it a little more Black Diamond Bay by adding choirs, cellos and all sorts of shit, which is what ended up happening to that song.
Q: Now that you sing vocals would you ever be able to give up the front stage?
A: I still have a great appreciation for just being a guitar player, because it allows me to play a lot more of the guitar. There are a lot of things I can’t do when I’m singing and it takes some of the pressure off. It’s fun, but it’s just a different thing.
Q: You just got back from touring; are you always ready for life on the road?
A: I’ve always been ready for it. The only time there was ever a doubt in my mind about touring was before the first tour I ever did, which was six years ago. I was a bit scared, I was like “what if I hate it?’ Now I know what I’m up against. So yes, I love it. It’s like 80 per cent love, 20 per cent pure hatred. It’s a good ratio, there’s no in between.