Getting Weird With Marmoset Band, Henry The Rabbit

Field Notes Interview #47: Henry The Rabbit, Marmoset Band

Strange and mysterious sounds are coming from Henry The Rabbit, and they like to keep things that way. This Copenhagen ensemble finds inspiration and instruments from unusual places. As a self-proclaimed "Psychedelic Ukulele-Skiffle" band, they mix together organ, ukulele, glockenspiel and various pieces of kitchen equipment —what they create is a sound that's otherworldy.

Using mainly acoustic instruments, their music evokes a playful, woodsy atmosphere in their unique take on folk. Their compositions are mostly instrumental with flourishes of beautiful vocal harmonies that create stirring sounds from sources that feel unknown and exciting at the same time.

Their music provided the soundtrack to the short film The Walrus by featured filmmaker, Luke Randall.  We chatted with frontman Craig Martin Wood about his thoughts on music and film and his plans for traveling to the moon.

M: When did you start writing music?

CW: I guess 4 or 5 years ago was when I started to crawl from behind the drum kit, and started to build tunes with a ukulele, and layer it up with whatever I could find. The earliest home recordings are full of kettle, frying pan and wine bottle percussion moments. 

Since being in my teens I was always getting involved with bands, but just accompanying them on the drums. Making my own tunes is a fairly recent development. 

M: What does a day in the life of a working band look like for you?

CW: As a layered laptop DIY kind of guy, it would be difficult for me to describe being in a working band. It has always been a voluntary pursuit of passion rather than work. 

I've recorded, toured and gigged for more than half of my life, but it's still minus profit. That's not work.

M: What role do you feel music has in film?

CW: Music can enhance moods and atmospheres, but depending on the filmmaker's vision it can also contradict and totally confuse the scene. I remember being blown away by No Country for Old Men for it's minimal use of music and full use of the sounds of nature or the urban sounds. And then again, I only have to play over the ending scene of Zabriskie Point in my mind to get a massive buzz for the incredible force induced by the vision of Antonioni to the sound of Pink Floyd at their loudest.

M: How do you feel your song complemented The Walrus?

CW: This particular song was created in a fit of depression during a weekend of heartbreak after a break up. The snare drum barely survived, and the speakers were cranked to melting point. To see a depressed walrus have his moment of revelation, and to walk away from his misery was just beautiful for me.

M: What's your favorite album this year?

CW: Oh, I haven't listened to anything new for a while. I'm still hooked up on Lee Hazelwood, Moondog and other cats from the other side.

M: What are you excited about for the future?

CW: Trips to the moon, the expansion of our cult, astral travel. I plan to get into a time machine and save Vincent Van Gogh, at least long enough to get another ten years of painting out of him.  I guess in the meantime, I'm looking forward to next week when our French friends (Tara King) come over and play a couple of festival dates with Halasan Bazar, who I play drums with.