Brian Dillon aka The Line is a member of Irish experimental band Meltybrains? and has worked with a range of Irish artists over the last 10 years, including Talos, Loah, Brídín, and Lilla Vargen among others.
In recent years he has gleaned a great deal of experience from collaborating with a range of musicians, leading to the basis for his new project. Red Blood Cells and Righteousness is a communally created record, built on the creative endeavours of Brian and a number of friends from within the Irish music world, and is out now.
We caught up with Brian to learn more.
1. What’s the music that you listened to growing up, that you still listen to today?
The truth is that a lot of the stuff that I really like now, is stuff that I was a bit embarrassed about liking when I was a teenager. I tried hard to be a cool rock kid, but was secretly listening to Usher, Justin Timberlake, and Blu Cantrell at home. Still a big fan of a classic noughties pop jam, but you probably wouldn't guess that from listening to my music!
2. In three words, describe the minute before you walk on stage.
3. How do you wind down after a gig?
With great difficulty! No, I joke - I actually love the post-show satisfaction of a job well done. Nothing like a post-show bowl of muesli, to wind down. Jesus, I am boring! Ha.
4. What’s the one song (by another artist) you wish you’d written or recorded first?
I don't really have any desire to have written anything that's already been written. Every song is an expression of the experience of an individual in a particular place and time. I'd rather just write the songs that I have to write.
5. What is your pet peeve?
Having a cold. I'm the worst patient imaginable. Just a general misery guts. I'm also a very impatient patient, unable to enjoy the downtime and wanting to get back to work.
6. Name one record, one book and one film that everyone should hear / read / see.
There are loads of records everyone should hear. Picking one is impossible, but let's go with Tim Hecker's ‘Virgins’. That would be an eye-opening experience for everyone involved.
The book I think everyone should read is ‘Let The Great World Spin’ by Colum McCann. A multiple narrative masterpiece about the Twin Towers, humanity, and the ways in which all of our lives have impact beyond what we are ever aware of.
As for a film, let's go with ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’. I love films that emphasise hope over resolution. The romance that film is centred around is challenging, but so full of hope.
7. Pick the director and lead actor(s) for a biopic about your life.
I'd have Charlie Kaufman as the director - he'd make my life into some kind of beautiful, slightly confusing, distorted-chronology masterpiece. To keep with the slightly confusing theme, I'd have Jim Carrey play me. As you can see, this answer is very in line with the last question!
8. You’re ordering take-away, what do you get?
This is gonna sound mental, but I never order take-away. I think the whole idea is weird. Getting people to make you food, when you have the opportunity to make your own food - why would anyone want that? I find cooking very relaxing and eating out to be stressful - too much choice. So I try to avoid take-away at all costs.
9. Describe your perfect day off.
This isn't something I really think about, because working as a musician is such an honour and a privilege. And I always enjoy the downtime more if it's at the end of a day spent working on something I care about.
10. Tell us, in one sentence, why we should come to your next gig (whenever it may be.)
You should come to my next gig for a joyous celebration of family and community, conveyed through sweet songs and walls of noise.
BONUS QUESTION: Recommend a podcast and tell us why we should subscribe to it.
I love Dissect Podcast. It's a long-form music analysis podcast which analyses contemporary classic records (Beyonce's Lemonade, Frank Ocean's Blonde, Radiohead's In Rainbows) in unbelievable depth. If you like music, you will enjoy this. Oops - that was more than one sentence. Oh well.
‘Red Blood Cells and Righteousness’ is out now. The Line plays Nov 18th – Róisín Dubh, Galway, Nov 19th – Connolly’s of Leap, Cork and Nov 25th – The Sugar Club, Dublin.