Exclusive – Interview with Guy’s bandmate in Apparatjik, Jonas Bjerre
Coldplay bassist, Guy Berryman loves to experiment musically and since 2008, he has been part of the electronic Supergroup, named Apparatjik, in which Danish born Jonas Bjerre is the lead singer of. Coldplaying.com has followed their musical activities since their formation, including the multi-national band’s debut LP release in 2010. Now we are catching up with the other frontman in Guy’s life, Jonas, as we seek an update on Apparatjik and his experiences of making music with Guy.
Welcome to Coldplaying, Jonas. Thank you for taking your time to chat with us and it’s an honor to have you on board!
First of all, would you mind to introduce yourself as well as Apparatjik?
My name is Jonas Bjerre and I am in a band based in Denmark called Mew, as well as in Apparatjik; a strange collective of individuals who make music and art and unusual events together. Magne A and Martin A are also in Apparatjik, we are all Apparatjiks, therefore we are A. But so is everyone else. Everyone can be an Apparatjik.
So you’re currently on two bands: Mew and Apparatjik. What is it like to work with two bands at the same time?
Mew is my main thing, really. It’s a band that I formed with my childhood friends and we’ve been playing together for many years. We have a new album coming out on April 27th, called + – which I’m quite excited about. We are going on a tour of Europe in May, and playing a bunch of summer festivals, so there’s a lot going on. Apparatjik is something completely different, where all ideas no matter how silly or crazy or zonky are put into function. There is no “no” in Apparatjik, only “yes”. It’s a kind of creative playground, and each project we do is an event in itself, because we so rarely have the time to get together.
What is the band’s musical style? We know that one of the songs called “Don’t Eat The Whole Banana”, which we think the beat is great to listen to. But we are curious of how you guys decide to choose the genre.
Well we don’t really choose genre. It’s a totally open thing, that can’t really be placed in any box or category. There’s a lot of visual art involved as well.
You have known Guy for quite a while. What is it like to work with him?
Wonderful! An extremely talented and unique individual, with whom I am grateful to have shared all these weird experiences in Apparatjik.
Do you guys have any similar musical taste? What really inspires you to form Apparatjik as a band?
Most certainly. I think all four of us have in common an ear for beautiful melodies, and working together we get to try out some of the things that don’t really fit into our other bands. It’s a lot of fun!
Can you please name one favorite song by Coldplay and why?
I would have to say Yellow. It was the first song by them that I ever heard. I remember it clearly, I was walking downstairs early in the morning in this house that my band was recording demos in, and everyone else was sleeping still. I switched on MTV2 and they played the video, and I just thought, “Wow, this really hits home, this is such a beautiful piece of music”. I’ve had the pleasure of seeing them live quite a few times now, and it’s so impressive how many memorable melodies they have under their belts!
Does Guy still have this facemask?
Ha Ha! I expect so
If you had never seen Coldplay before and were approached by one of the members, who would you want to meet first and why?
Guy, of course. He’s the coolest one!
So we had checked the latest news about your new book called “Apparatjik World”. Can you please tell us more about it?
It’s a very picturesque collection of all the weird stuff we’ve done together so far, from early concerts inside cubes, to steel structure half deer / half motorcycle sculptures. Kind of a documentation of our combined efforts. One of the really cool things about Apparatjik is that we get to try out a lot of things we’ve never done, or even imagined doing before.
What do you expect for the next upcoming albums? Can you say something about the future of Apparatjik?
The future of Apparatjik, as well as its past, is always uncertain. Things will happen for sure, but when and where is a secret known only to the connection-demons of the cosmos.
If you were asked to collaborate with Coldplay for the next project, what sort of music would you like to compose that is still related to both bands?
Wouldn’t that be amazing, huh? Ooh I don’t know. Maybe the kind of music people play in parallel universes. Interstellar progressive paprika? In any case, I’m sure it would be glorious!
Thank you very much for your time to interview with us, Jonas. We wish you success and we hope to see more of new upcoming Apparatjik projects in the future!
Thank you so much for having me!
Check out Sequential by Apparatjik below, taken from their second (2012) album, Square Peg in a Round Hole.