Claire Evans from YACHT is the ultimate beach babe who loves pina coladas and getting caught in the rain. Moreover, she definitely has more than half a brain. Admittedly, we didn’t exactly make love at midnight on the dunes of the cape, but we had a nice chat instead about holidays, utopia and their new album Shangri La.

Hi Claire, how are you?

I'm well, thank you.

Since this issue of Subbacultcha magazine is the Beach Issue, first things first, do you like pina coladas and getting caught in the rain?

Yes, and we're into yoga, too.

Can you remember any particularly good or bad summer holidays?

Every moment of existence should be treated with the same reverence we treat summer holidays. Remaking our understanding of "holiday" means rejecting the image of ourselves we inherit from dominator culture — that of a worker, someone whose leisure must be compartmentalized into units, and somehow deserving of exclusion from paradise. Paradise -- summer holiday -- is a state of mind that can be claimed by any one of us.

How do you feel slightly over a week before your album release? Do you have plans for the big day?

It verges on the anticlimactic. We finished Shangri-La almost six months ago, and we have been living with its ideas for much longer. We feel as though it already exists and has presence, but in reality its life has only begun. Once it's released out into the world, it will no longer be ours -- it will belong to everybody, and we anticipate that moment with trepidation and anticipation.

In what way is Shangri La different to what you have created until now?

We think of our albums as manifestations of our philosophies, aesthetic interests, and ideas. See Mystery Lights was the purest document of the time during which we made it; it reflects our obsessions, at the time, with ritual and mystery. After traveling around the world and discussing our ideas with people for several years, the philosophy, the ideas began to feel out of date. Our music needs to exist in the Now. Shangri-La, then is the document of now. It is a very specific representation of our current dreams, fears, and desires.

Can you explain to our readers what Utopia and Dystopia mean to YACHT?

The idea of Utopia is a great equalizer: all cultures throughout history have had their own Utopia. Some call it Shangri-La, others call it Eden, Valhalla, Arcadia, Paradise. It's the representation of our desire for perfection, our innate dream for order and peace. In a sense, it's ideology made physical -- Utopia is what happens when some entity attempts to turn ideas into a place. Unfortunately, it's not something that can be done, because ideology is singular and people are multifarious. Hence, Dystopia is the inevitable result of any concerted effort to impose ideas on place. These extremes are natural to the human race, and one cannot exist without the other. Our idea for Utopia, our contribution to this historical dialogue, is that the place can never be built -- but it can exist in our minds.

Which is closer to your heart, surfing waves or surfing the web? How has the great WWW influenced the way you work as YACHT? How has it influenced your belief system?

YACHT would be impossible without the internet. Access to an infinite image bank, access to both established and paranoid conceptions of the world, and direct access to people -- these are all things which define our work. The inherent anarchism, populism, and underlying complex order of the Internet is a source of great awe. It is as impressive (and spiritual) to us as the universe itself.

Do you have any exciting performances up your sleeve for your European tour this summer?

No two YACHT performances are the same. We can only tell you that there will be both analog and digital sound production, five human bodies, visual stimulus, and physical contact.

Apart from touring, creating and interacting, do you actually get a break this summer?

We consider ourselves to be deeply privileged to be able to travel around the world, perform, disseminate ideas, and have discussions with people of all nationalities and backgrounds. There is no time for a holiday when you don't know when that door of opportunity will close -- we want to take advantage of it while we can.

If there were only three things you could take to an eternal desert island beach holiday what would they be?

Eternal? A long and difficult book, like Manly P. Hall's "The Secret Teachings of All Ages," comfortable clothes made of natural materials, and perhaps a cyanide capsule, should living forever become too much of a burden on our spirits.

Do you have any good sunburn remedies for our readers? Any sandcastle building tips or swimwear recommendations?

Although you should avoid long-term sun exposure without SPF protection, never forget that the sun feeds us happiness directly into the tops of our heads by spilling Vitamin D onto the world.

By Zofia Ciechowska