Home > Interviews > My Jerusalem Interview

My Jerusalem Interview

Nichola Eastwood


My Jerusalem look set to have a busy year. With tour dates already announced throughout January, we caught up with Jeff Klein from the band to see what else in store in 2011.

MTTM: What inspired you all to veer away from your own bands and form My Jerusalem?  Is it difficult now for you all to juggle commitments between My Jerusalem and the other bands you’re involved with?

Jeff Klein: Creativity is a muscle and if you don’t exercise it, it will atrophy. I think we were all feeling a bit bored at the moment and wanted to all make something together. The juggling isn’t too bad. Contrary to what I’ve seen some people write, this isn’t a “side project”. It’s a collective and a main focus. A living, breathing dragon with a lot of heads, arms, and feet. Sometimes some people will be busy with other things, but there is a large family of almost 20 of us to work with to pick up the slack. You’ll always probably have at least 6 of us up in your face at all times. This way it’s always moving forward

MTTM: Can it be a bit chaotic trying to record when you have so many different people in the mix?  Does this make it harder to decide what kind of direction you want your music to take?

Jeff Klein: Recording is chaotic whether its 2 people or 20 people. The whole process is pretty democratic though and we all are kind of coming from a similar place. So far everyone’s input has been valid and valuable. The songs in the moment define where they go, we just kind of follow.

MTTM: How are you feeling about your upcoming tour dates in the UK in January?

Jeff Klein: Everyone is excited. It’s our first time coming over as My Jerusalem. That being said, we are a little nervous and hope everyone comes out and has a great experience.

MTTM: How do you feel about the response to your debut, ‘Gone For Good’, so far?

Jeff Klein: For the most part everybody seems to be intrigued and supportive. It feels really great. We’ve had some really great opportunities and exposure. Hopefully it gradually grows. We want to reach as many people as we can and create just one big beautiful sonic family. For better or worse. Music is powerful. It’s a life force.

MTTM: Was there pressure on you recording ‘Gone For Good’ to meet the expectations set by your debut EP, ‘Without Feathers’?

Jeff Klein: We actually did a good deal of the recording around the same time period. At least the basic tracks. When we started, we recorded about 30 songs, some of them multiple versions of one song in very different feels. As they were coming together, and perhaps a tad prematurely, we threw a few of them together to put out in the world and that became Without Feathers.

MTTM: With so many of you in the band, you must have a lot of influences.  Are there elements of all your influences in your work?

Jeff Klein: Well, we all have to streamline it a little so it doesn’t get out of hand sometimes. Otherwise we’d get even more out of control. We all share a lot of favourite bands and also have our personal obsessions and all of them rub off onto each other. A lot of songs are created in the moment and are moulded by the people all involved in that moment. If it was up to me everything would sound like Klaus Nomi.

MTTM: The song Sweet Chariot appears both on ‘Gone For Good’ and ‘Without Feathers’ was this a conscious decision or just something that happened by coincidence?  Does the song have a particular significance to you as a group?

Jeff Klein: They are both slightly different versions. The one on Feathers is a bit longer and clunkier but has some great heart to it. They are very similar. The way we see it is that song was sort of the heart of this bands first heartbeat and when you have a song that turns out that inspiring to oneself, you make sure its on the Full Length. I’m hoping it will be the next single.

MTTM: Finally, asides from your imminent tour dates, what are the future plans for My Jerusalem?

Jeff Klein: Hopefully more tour dates and writing and recording. We’ve started the beginnings of a bunch of demos and it’s pretty exciting. But I also think we are just only hitting a good groove with performing together in a live setting and I’d like to explore it a lot more. If possible I’d like to spend the next year or two touring this album while making the next.