William Control aka Will Francis has gone from goth-punk front man to dark-wave solo artist and renowned album producer. Control is about to go on his ‘Punishment’ tour playing at various venues across the UK, surrounding his set at Whitby Goth Weekend alongside goth-punk legends The Damned. We caught up with the mysterious man himself to talk about the Aiden reunion, producing FVK, Nirvana and meeting vampires.
Hello William, How are you and are you looking forward to this UK tour?
I am always looking forward to playing shows in the old world. I’ve been flying across that damn ocean for more than ten years to do so. It’s always a great time.
You are also playing Whitby Goth Weekend alongside The Damned and your friends Ashestoangels, are you looking forward to the festival?
In two words… Fuck. Yes.
What other bands at the festival should we check out?
Definitely check out Ashestoangels, and the Birthday Massacre.
Do you feel it is a good idea to have a weekend dedicated to the ‘goth’ subculture?
Yeah absolutely. I feel it’s important to celebrate any form subculture. It allows growth and understanding to all those involved. To shy away from such endeavors would be egregious and unproductive.
Would something similar work in your home city of Seattle?
No absolutely not. This scene is minuscule compared to what it is over here. In Seattle people are too concerned with how many instagram followers they have or which flannel shirt they bought at the mall for a hundred bucks will match their cut off shorts they paid two hundred for at a vintage shop. It’s a stupid place filled with hipsters and tech start-ups. But I love the weather, so I stay.
Vampires are so passé”.
Did you know there’s an urban legend that Dracula visited Whitby in the dark ages. What would you do if you came face-to-face with the Count himself?
I’d tell him to get a life. That vampires are so passé.
How would you describe your album ‘The Neuromancer‘ in 3 sentences?
It only takes three words to describe it. Best Album Ever.
Do you have plans for a new album soon?
I’ve been writing and recording but it’s a slow process. I’m also doing a new Aiden album this summer. So WC wont come out until 2016.
You have announced on social media there will be a new Aiden album coming soon! What can we expect from this album?
I’m returning to the roots of what Aiden was, fast, aggressive punk/metal songs. it’s shaping up nicely.
Will Aiden be touring again too?
Yes indeed. I’m putting it together now.
You have recently turned your hand to producing albums by upcoming bands – do you feel this improves yourself as a recording artist?
Most certainly. The learning never ends. Especially when it comes to the sonic landscape. Even after all this time and all the records I have made I still feel as if I am a beginner.
As a solo artist, who would you say your biggest influences are?
Frank Sinatra, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Sam Cooke, Billie Holiday.
Some of your fans are just getting in to rock music, what was the first band you listened to?
Nirvana was the first band I really loved. But even before that I had listened to a lot of music, the Beatles, Depeche Mode, Springsteen, Metallica. Nirvava just happened to be the band that I connected with the most in my youth.
Isn’t Gene Simmons dead?”
Gene Simmons recently said that ‘rock is dead’ do agree with this statement?
Isn’t Gene Simmons dead?
Are you playing any more festivals in Europe soon?
I don’t have anything on the books no.
What else can we expect from William Control in the future?
I don’t have any plans on slowing down. The last Revelator book is coming, a new record, touring, merch. Everything is coming. Just not all at once.
Check back for a review of the Newcastle gig. You can read the interview with Ashestoangels by clicking here.