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The Kills’ Alison Mosshart on new toys, old tours and ‘God Games’

A man and a woman wearing sunglasses sit on the sidewalk on a sunny day next to a vehicle protected by a car cover.
The Kills; Facebook

When I got offered a chance for a 15-minute interview with Alison Mosshart from The Kills, my head started swirling. As a HUGE fan for the last two decades, I thought, “How am I going to ask her all the things I want to ask her in only 15 minutes?”

Well, it turns out you can actually talk about quite a lot in a small amount of time when you’re speaking with someone as friendly, smart and funny as Alison.

The Kills were deep in rehearsals for a tour that started the next day and hits Milwaukee tomorrow, but Alison still found time to give me a little insight to the unique way she and Jamie Hince wrote songs for their new album, God Games. (I’ll give you a hint: She did hers on an instrument she doesn’t know how to play and used for the first time ever to write a Kills record.)

Later in the interview, Alison reveals what record she listened to the most when she was taking solo road trips around the country during Covid and the BLM movement. We also reminisced about the 20-year anniversary of their first album, Keep on your Mean Side, and The Kills’ first trip to Milwaukee when they played Cactus Club in the early 2000s.

Listen to the interview using the player on this page to hear all of that and, of course, what her childhood smelled like. You can also find highlights from the interview below, and then make sure to get over to The Rave this Tuesday night, Feb. 13, for the Milwaukee stop of the “God Games Tour.”

Interview highlights

On The Kills’ tour preparations:

It’s just me and Jamie. We’ve been rehearsing for the last four days. It’s not enough rehearsals, to be honest. It’s kind of like you’re not match-ready until you’ve played matches. You just gotta go. I’m really ready to just go now. Singing eight hours a day is f&$@ing insane.

I shouldn’t be talking, honestly. I’ve been just trying to be completely quiet since — I think we finished rehearsals at 11:30 last night and did, like, 10 hours yesterday. It’s kinda wild. We haven’t been on tour since 2019. We played some gigs, but the proper run of six solid weeks is gonna be awesome.

On getting ready to go out on the road again:

I’m a person with a million lists and a million boxes and a million bags and exercising and singing and re-teaching myself my own songs. There are so many records at this point, and we love them all, and we want to play things from all of them. It’s just really funny how you can go into the process of making a new record, and that is the world. … My brain typically will kick out absolutely everything else. I’ll forget all the lyrics to everything else I’ve ever written to make space, you know? But it’s been really fun playing old tracks and new tracks together, back to back.

On DIY touring in The Kills’ early days:

I was in England, and it was pre-email and cell phones and internet and all that stuff. I had a pretty big directory from having been on tour since I was 14 with Discount. So I had friends in little venues or skate parks, art stores, random places, people’s front rooms. That was someplace to start, and I wrote letters to people all over the country, and in six months I’d booked a three-month tour for Jamie and I — which is fantastic. We just bought a two-door car, filled it with amps and drove around the country for three months. That was really the gelling of the band. We knew we would do it forever.

88Nine Promotions Manager / On-Air Talent | Radio Milwaukee