FAULT meets The Veils ahead of their new album release

Led by the mysterious Finn Andrews, The Veils are one of the most sacrilegious bands in alternative rock. The group’s haunting upcoming album, Total Depravity, was co-produced by American artist El-P from Run the Jewels.

Andrews, in his interview with FAULT, gives insight into his bizarre life as a second-generation performer.


FAULT: What was it like growing up with a musical father [rock star Barry Andrews]?

Finn: The weirdest aspect was just being really young and not knowing who all these malnourished weirdos hanging out in my house were. And then, as I got older, that became quite cool. But when I was like eight, I didn’t really understand what was going on. These people just seemed like they all needed to have a bath and relax a bit or something. They all seemed very uptight and freaked-out and strange to me. But I sort of pieced it together as I got older. When I was old enough to actually be writing songs myself, my relationship with my dad changed a lot, I guess, because could always compare notes on and play each other new songs.


FAULT: Did you ever meet David Bowie?

Finn: Yes, but I was very, very small. He looked after me a few times, but I don’t remember it at all.


FAULT: What factors went into your decision leave The Veils and do a solo tour, way back a decade ago, and then what made you decide to re-form the band?

Finn: It was never really a band with the first record. It was people I sort of found within the first few weeks of getting to London to record those songs with. It was put across like a band, but it certainly never felt like one. We didn’t know each other very well, and it was kind of a solo record, really, under a band name. So then, when it all just kind of imploded, I think those shows had been booked already, so I just went and did them by myself on my way back to New Zealand. That was a depressing time, really. I don’t like traveling, and I don’t like touring on my own. It’s not really as fun. Your sort of in your own company all the time. I like having a gang around me. Both onstage and off.



FAULT: I saw that you wrote an orchestral piece to commemorate World War I, but I couldn’t find a whole lot of information about it. What can you tell us about that?

Finn: That was really interesting. It was just for a one-off performance in Passchendaele, in Belgium. I believe, in the beginning of last year (I might have that wrong.), they asked a Canadian artist and an Australian artist and an English artist—about five or six people—each to compose a 20-minute orchestral piece for it. It wasn’t recorded; we just performed it once, on the site of the battle there. Yeah, it was very strange, I think I ate something weird the night before, and I was incredibly nervous as well. We were staying in a hotel next to the old battleground, overlooking this huge landscape. I was up all night—half-sleeping, half-not—having these weird dreams with all these millions of little eyes just like looking at me out of the ground. And then you know when you sort of sleep, and then you don’t feel like you’ve slept at all? It was sort of one of those. And then I woke up and had to do this performance, so I was a wreck that day, probably more so than any other show we’ve done. But it was a very nice thing to be able to do. It was a a very interesting, different experience for me.


FAULT: What was the deal with you guys living out of a garage in OKC for a period of time?

Finn: That was because we had a manager—this guy who managed The Flaming Lips—and his bright idea was that we relocate to Oklahoma for six months, or however long it was. We lived in Oklahoma, and then we had a little van that we drove to the coasts and back. It seems okay except, like, it’s a fuckin’ long drive from New York to Oklahoma. But it was great. I got a lot of songs out of that period of time—certainly “King of Chrome” off the new record. It was really interesting and sort of foreign to us, that part of the world. It was right in the middle of, like, peak W. Bush, as well, so it was an interesting time to be staying on the Bible Belt, you know?


FAULT: Why did choose to record Total Depravity in three different countries and four different cities?

Finn: It really wasn’t a choice. It was just by virtue of having El-P involved, and Adam [Greenspan] and Dean Hurley as well. And also having no money really to pay anyone. It was a case of me going around with a bag full of hard drives and, you know, stealing time from people whenever I could. I believe we and Run the Jewels were touring around the same time, so it was whenever we both had days off. You know, that’s how ended up in Porto; it was just because everybody was there and had a few days off at the same time. Yeah, it was quite stressful, mostly because I just kept thinking I was going to lose the entire record in an airport or something. It was a strange way to make a record, but it was possible for us to do it like that because we had the luxury of time.


FAULT: Finally – What is your FAULT?

Finn: That’s like in a job interview, isn’t it? What are the ones you’re not meant to say, like perfectionist and stuff? There are many to choose from, certainly … I don’t go on holidays. I need to occasionally do that. We weren’t really a family that had holidays growing up. I think it was because we were moving around such a lot anyway. We’ve got lots of Europeans in band, so they’re constantly going on holiday. They like to live a more relaxed life. So I probably need to learn how to relax a little more.


The Veils release new album ‘TOTAL DEPRAVITY’ on August 26th via Nettwerk Records.  

Words Cody Fitzpatrick

Photography Thomas Wood