Extract of Interview in Darker than the Bat

circa 2001, Belgium
Interviewer: Peter Jan Van Damme

We could no longer find links to this zine, although it continues to be cited online.

Describe the music you make for people who have never heard of you. 

Romantic ethereal-pop. Fairy music. Fusion of medieval-gothic… dream-pop. Quirky remarks from listeners: “Enya with balls”, “Loreena McKennitt on Ecstasy”. (NB: subsequent to this interview – a quip from UK illustrator Brian Froud: “The bastard child of Enya and Led Zeppelin”.)

You grew up in native Australian bushland. Can you tell us some more about that and how you came to making music?

We lived among eucalyptus forests, near a creek…(with) moments of wild magic: call of waterbirds, laugh of a kookaburra, solitude of a kingfisher. My sisters and I enjoyed creeping up on kangaroos, catching yabbies, walking our goats, horse-riding, building tree-cubbies and lying together in a hammock after a midnight swim, watching for shooting stars. One sister had a canoe, one had birds, I had a garden with a frog pond… music helped integrate a sense of trees being haunted…

Do you try to create a certain feeling with your music? 

I aim to integrate energy with ambience, whimsy with direction. An emotional current moves beneath a shimmering surface.

On Ariel a lot of different instruments are used. Is each instrument chosen for a song for a special reason? 

Instruments are chosen for tone, presence and so on, as called by emotion or imagery. Mark wrote a ‘cello part for my song ‘The Seagiant’, as this instrument has warmth and depth, while the bowing action portrays a boat being rowed, gliding through dark waves. To this song we added a harp, strummed randomly as if floating in a tide, caressed by invisible hands.

What is most important in your songs, the music or the lyrics? 

I consider lyrics to be music. Words can be intrinsically melodic. They open doors in the soul. In a magical arrangement they ring like bells… a subtle dance between meaning, imagery and sound.