WAZU recently came to Cincinnati and I was immediately charmed by Rizz. The goth duo was so genuine live and the set was awesomely dark with shadowy images projected behind them while they rocked out. Afterwards, I met Rizz and we agreed to set up a Women in Rock interview. I sent her some questions about WAZU and here’s what she had to say.
IK: How did you get your start in music?
RK: When I was very young, TV was a constant companion. I’d get lost in cartoons, TV commercials, movies… I remember getting obsessed with certain TV show theme songs or ad music. I guess that’s where it started!
IK: How did you and Matt meet and decide to form a band?
RK: Matt and I met at music school in Australia. He became the drummer in my metal band. We liked all the same music and liked hanging out so we started working together a lot more. When I first saw him I thought he looked like a cross between David Bowie and Peter Murphy which didn’t hurt.
IK: How did you decide to make the move from Australia to L.A. and then eventually to Brooklyn?
RK: In 2009 the band we had been focusing on at the time was making it’s 3rd record in L.A. and touring the US west coast. After all that was finished it felt like the band had run it’s course, so instead of going home to Australia we stayed in L.A. and started writing lots of stuff, just the two of us. After a while in L.A. we decided to make the move to New York. We just always liked the place. It gets under your skin.
IK: WAZU has a great image that lines up with the music. How has that developed over time?
RK: We inspire each other’s work so we end up coming up with stuff that’s cohesive. I might shoot something which inspires Matt to provide a soundtrack for it and vice versa. As time goes by, you create your own little world.
IK: How did you decide to keep your band a two piece?
RK: Once our old band had parted ways all the stuff we had written as a duo struck us as quite cool and exciting. Having more people to play with funnily enough can be more restricting. This is the most creatively fertile situation either of us has been in so it makes sense to keep it this way until we run out of ideas.
IK: What are you most excited about the upcoming release of your debut album?
RK: It’s exciting to document your work and share it with people. Making a record and all the things that go along with that captures and solidifies that time in your life. We are excited to put it out there in music land.
IK: What is the favorite city you’ve played so far?
RK: Funny you should ask! Cincinnati was one of the highlights of our recent tour.
IK: Who is your favorite woman in rock?
RK: I have so many favorites! I’d have to say Chan Marshall and also Kate Bush. They’re both such raw and honest artists. I love how both of these women made a big, dramatic entrance and then at a crucial stage in their careers completely shunned the limelight to go live their lives and deal with themselves. I think that’s the way it should be. Life is crazy and inspiring in good and bad ways. You have to live it and feel it in order to have something relevant to express.
IK: What is the last album you bought?
IK: Who is your favorite goth band?
IK: When will you be back in Cincinnati?!
RK: Quite possibly very soon! Our album drops on October 31st and we’re hitting the road again straight after.
Be sure to keep an eye out for the debut album from WAZU!!