WUCAN - Retro Rock with Romanticism and Women's Power

22. October 2015

Wucan Underground

WUCAN - Retro Rock with Romanticism and Women's Power

eclipsed: Tell me the origin of the band.

Francis Tobolsky: Well, I started the band with an ad when I moved to Dresden four years ago to study. In my old hometown Chemnitz I didn't see the chance to find like-minded people. My claim was to make classic blues rock by Free and Rory Gallagher. First of all our drummer Axel Pätzold reported himself on the ad and peu à peu they all came together. About Tim George on guitar and finally Patrick Dröge on bass.

eclipsed: And how did you find your way to this special sound, a mix of classic hard & blues rock with Tull's flute, Krautrock influences and modern retro rock à la Blues Pills?

Tobolsky: Yeah, then the songwriting started. Somehow it came all by itself that we drove this, I say, old-school sound. I think that this is also connected with the fact that none of us really listens to new, current music. Many productions are simply too polished to a high gloss for us, especially in the metal area, of course also in pop/rock. Somehow we didn't like it.

eclipsed: Where'd you learn to play the flute so well? It really reminds you of Ian Anderson.

Tobolsky: (laughs) Funny you should say that. Just a few days ago a metal music magazine said that this was the biggest insult to the majesty I would do on the flute. Jethro Tull wasn't an influence at all, but as a thirteen year old I enjoyed two years of classical flute lessons. Later I concentrated more on the guitar. But then I thought to myself that I could also bring the flute into the band.

eclipsed: Where does your band name come from?

Tobolsky: We were really desperate to find a band name. And Tim sent me an unspectacular music link. This was the music video of the song "Wucan" by psychedelic rocker Black Mountain, which in Chinese means "lunch" in addition to the name for a Chinese city (laughs). We decided that together as a band.

eclipsed: How did you approach your first album?

Tobolsky: So on our first release, an EP, we weren't really happy with the sound. This time we wanted to make it clear from the outset that this was not supposed to sound so modern, but ... yes, "mustier". Also adapted to our music style. We also recorded live and took a little more time to experiment, for example with the Moog synthesizer and the theremin I play.

eclipsed: So how did the longtrack "Wandersmann" come about, which is out of the ordinary in German? This reminds me of romantic poetry as it used to be with "Leiermann" from Franz Schubert's "Winterreise".

Tobolsky: You, exactly. I used to want to study literature. I was always such a cultural epoch freak, and my absolute favorite time was romanticism and especially the so-called black romanticism. Maybe that had some influence, too.

eclipsed: "Sow The Wind sounds a lot like early seventies. Would you have wanted to live back then?

Tobolsky: (laughs) That's a difficult thing. Somehow you're used to all the comforts of the 21st century. At least then I would have experienced this spirit of the time first hand. So I can only have this told to me by people like my grandparents, who already lived then, or people who were active in student movements.

eclipsed: Young people nowadays tend to hear the charts, hip hop and electro more often. How do you get your obviously so rich musical knowledge about older music at all? Where does this love come from?

Tobolsky: Well, I've asked myself that question many times before. I've been interested in music since I was a kid. I was often with my grandparents, and here in Saxony they had an oldie radio station on the air, from the sixties to the eighties. I must have preferred a certain sound and song structure. When I finally had my own internet access when I was fourteen or fifteen (laughs), I could surf around and was constantly looking for music. You can always get links to other bands and songs on YouTube, which you then like, and you can keep on hanging around like that.

eclipsed: It's nice that the Internet also provides such positive things. What are your musical role models?

Tobolsky: Besides Blues Rock there are many old Krautrock bands like Novalis, Hoelderlin and Birth Control, but also East German bands like Renft and Karat.

eclipsed: How do you see the current retro-rock scene with bands like Siena Root, in whose opening program you will play in the coming months, or especially the blues pills, with which you will probably be compared now, simply because there is such an energetic front woman on stage.

Tobolsky: Hm, difficult question ... I almost think that some people in the press are already annoyed about it. But every retro rock band sounds different to me anyway. In Metal, for example, many of the bands sound much more similar. No, it's full of musical diversity, it can be more like Blues Rock or Heavy Metal or it can be psychedelic. Yes, or even garage rock of the late sixties, there are so many different ways of playing that you can't even say, so this retro rock, that annoys me. This all sounds so fresh and different. I just think that certain bands are promoted in a very strong way and that can get on people's nerves. I can imagine that, especially what comes from the big labels.

More information:

Interview: Walter Sehrer