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Thunderheist: Little Booty Girl

Thunderheist talk candidly to Dazed about where they are right now musically and their cunning plot to conquer the world.

Canadian duo Thunderheist have been bubbling under the surface for quite some time now, they hit the UK tomorrow ready loaded with a two year back catalogue of tracks guaranteed to vibrate the dancefloor. We talk to the comedic duo on the eve of their show at this years Stag and Dagger Festival in Shoreditch and in the midst of their European onslaught. You can also check out their own individual blogs here and here.

Dazed Digital: Your album 'Big Dada' dropped at the end of March over here, how do you think it has been received both in the UK and back home in Canada?
Grahm Zilla: To be honest we have been on the road so much that we don’t really know what is going on with the album reception! I guess we’ll find out when we play in London!

DD: What does the new album have to offer, please sum it up, what is it about?
Grahm Zilla: The funny part is that we had some label problems that delayed us; the album is over two years old. It’s basically a snapshot of when we first started out, its hip-hop heavy because that where Isis was back then.

DD: Are there any tracks you were playing out two years ago that you are bored of now?
Grahm Zilla: I know I’m not supposed to say this but pretty much everything on there!
Isis Salam: hahahahahaha!
Grahm Zilla: We're currently revamping some of this material and we are stoked by the new music we are working on right now.

DD: Do you guys have any other synonyms? Previous lives we should know about?
Isis Salam: I was formally known as prince…
Grahm Zilla: Metrix.

DD: What's the story behind 'Jerk it' popping up in 'The Wrestler'?
Isis Salam: We drew straws for who had to sleep with Rourke  - let’s just say G took one for the team...
Grahm Zilla: Actually, the real story is that whoever picked the short straw, had to do a no-holds barred steel cage match vs. Rourke. I had him on the two count after a DDT but Aranovsky came up and smashed a guitar over my head and I was down...

DD: (Isis) Whom have you been compared to vocally?  
Isis Salam: I'm always flattered when the person they compare me to is brilliant or someone who has influenced me. I’ve been compared to Grace Jones, Donna Summer, Lauryn Hill, Stevie Nicks and Nina Simone. All of those women I look up to and would love to have half of the foot print they left on the music industry.

DD: (Isis) Which singers are you most inspired by?
Isis Salam: All of the above, plus Debbie Harry, Madonna, and the great Peaches. Betty Davis is my hero!

DD: (Grahm) Who are you into on a producer tip?
Grahm Zilla: Duke Dumont, Xxxchange, Eli Escobar, Nacho Lovers, Surkin, Mixhell, Aeroplane, Jesse Rose, Lindstrom, Todd Terje, AVH and Switch.

DD: Who would you like to remix a track for you guys?
Isis Salam: Peaches, The Death Set and Jesus, I hear he’s going to be on Michael Jackson come back tour.
Grahm Zilla: Any of the people I mention above. Even though some of them already have...

DD: What kind of sound were you into growing up?
Isis Salam: Everything - from punk, pop, jazz, funk, soul, rock and thanks to my dad I even got into some country. I was way more surprised to find out my old Nigerian father went ape shit for Garth Brooks. I also listened to plenty of Nigerian musicians, like Fela Kuti and Mono Mono.
Grahm Zilla: Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Dead Kennedys, Hendrix, The Doors, Michael Jackson, Supertramp, Hall And Oates, Nirvana, Orbital, Run DMC, Eric B And Rakim, Fat Boys.

DD: I'm really into the beats/rhymes on LBG talk me through how the track came together?
Isis Salam: It really is just about all the girls out there with not so big behinds. I’m not talking about the pancake butts, but us little booty girls. I wonder if there is a foundation for people with pancake butts?

DD: (Grahm) Are you the black Kate Moss?
Isis Salam: No, he’s the black Michael Jackson.
Grahm Zilla: No, I am the black Woody Allen.

DD: Describe your personal clothing style?
Isis Salam: ‘Cheap chic’ I like to keep it clean and simple, some of my girlfriend's tell me I dress like I'm ready to go yachting. I also love glam, sequins, bright colours and have a thing for leather, bordering on un-cool.
Grahm Zilla: Usually jeans and tees.

DD: How important is having a strong image to match the music?
Isis Salam: Music always comes first, but fashion and style are just other avenues to showcase your personality.
Grahm Zilla: I think its important to wear pants... most of the time.

DD: Fashion wise who are you inspired by?
Isis Salam: Kelis is just smoking. I really respect people who have a inner fierceness to them. People who are able to wear something and own it - like mixing stripes and plaids is second nature.  Audrey Hepburn, Blondie, Betty Davis, and Grace Jones
Grahm Zilla: I’m not really a ‘super fashionista’ but if Marc Jacobs wants to hook me up I’m down!

DD: How does London compare to Quebec?
Isis Salam: it doesn’t – it’s apples and oranges.

DD: What’s the scene like there?
Grahm Zilla: Montreal is really fun; it has that whole all-night party kind of vibe you usually get only on the other side of the Atlantic. Although, it usually ends with Poutine (fries, gravy and cheese curds) and that doesn’t end well for anyone.

DD: Also you mentioned in an interview for Dazed you were keen on British TV, aside new Southpark (have you seen the Kayne episode?) are their any Canadian exports we should be checking out?
Isis Salam: Trailer park boys, Canadian Idol and yes I like fishdicks... but I am in no way shape or form a gay fish.
Grahm Zilla: Co-sign trailer park boys, but musically people need to look out for Bonjay, Fan Death, Nacho Lovers and other Canadian exports like poutine and strippers.

DD: Plans for world domination include?
Isis Salam: Meeting Oprah, marrying Oprah, and during the honeymoon I will extract her power... then run for president and prime minister at the same time! By that time I won’t need Thunderheist. I will be ruler of world...well at least North America.
Grahm Zilla: Building a death ray gun that can explode the sun, then offer my patented sun in a bag for $9.99.

Thunderheist play at Catch, Kingsland Road, 21 May 09 as part of the Stag & Dagger Festival.