London dream-pop band Firestations and German indiepop’ers Sleeping Policemen joined forces as Red Deer People for our recent “Between Two Waves – The Second Wave” release. Their song “Early Warning System” has been a favourite for many of the listeners.
In this interview, Laura, Mike and Martin from Firestations and Sonja from Sleeping Policemen tells us everything you need to know about their new project. And yes, they will continue to make music together!

For us, personally, it was great to see that it was the band Dark Captain that brought the two bands together, in a way. We’re huge fans of Dark Captain. And Firestations. And Sleeping Policemen. And Red Deer People. So let’s hear the story about this project!

Tell us the story about “Early Warning System”, the process and how it was made!

Sleeping Policemen: 
Mike sent us a demo which was already amazing
. We made additional recordings (vocals, drums, synths and stuff), sent the files back and forth, and boom, there it was. Tille and Mike talked about how to mix it, Mike put it all together, everybody was happy. VERY happy.

It’s kind of broadly about brainwashing in a safe, developed-world society with a highly funded military, and a blind faith in technology to solve all ills. The verse is from the viewpoint of the submissive public and the chorus is from the view of the ruling technocrats… or something…


Why did you choose to work together and how did you meet?

We met Sonja when we were touring in Germany with our old band ‘Dark Captain’. We kept in touch and they kindly invited us to Hamburg to play a gig with them. That was when this project was born.

Sleeping Policemen:
Red Deer People sprung to life March 16th 2012. We were already friends (Hennie and I had met Mike and Laura through Dark Captain, Light Captain) and Firestations were so ace to come over to visit us and play with us at our album release party, when our debut “Sleeping Policemen” was released. Afterwards we all were very happy and very thirsty. After a couple of beers we formed Red Deer People
. They were there to rule ok, though only in our minds. Between Two Waves was actually the reason to actually get things done. As Sleeping Policemen are the slowest band on earth,

How was it to work together?

Sleeping Policemen:
We were a proper band well before actually working together, as we are very good at drinking together and imagining how Red Deer People will rule the world. Unfortunately, we don’t see each other that often. Even more unfortunately, Sleeping Policemen are procrastinating bums and take ages to actually get things done. So Firestations sent us the demo of Early Warning System, and it took us ages to get things done. We are very good at dwelling on things and get distracted by everyday life (a band baby being born and that stuff). Fortunately though, Mike is very good at getting things started. And then there’s the deadline, so we have to get things done, finally get them done and send files back and forth. And in the end things all fall into place. Amazing.

They are very nice people and it was a pleasure to share ideas with them.

Your project name – is there a story behind the choice?

Sleeping Policemen:
It’s all a bit blurry, and I don’t remember whether it was Mike or Martin, but one of them came up with it. Red Deer People were primordial people who had just been discovered when we all played together and got drunk together in Hamburg. That’s how I recall it, at least. Ask Mike. He knows best.

On the way to Hamburg to play a gig with Sleeping Policemen Laura from Firestations read an article about the prehistoric ‘Red Deer People’ – long lost human ancestors from China. They’re almost human, and so are we.

Sleeping Policemen – Vogelbird by EardrumsPop

Do you want to continue the collaboration?

Yes. We have a few other songs we could work on together.

Sleeping Policemen: 
Absolutely. Mike already sent us two more demos which are, of course, amazing. And we also have a couple of ideas. Given the fact that we are procrastinating bums, we’ll probably have a Red Deer People album ready when Emil is taking his A-levels.

Firestations – Never Closer by Waltz Time Records

Find out more about Firestations and Sleeping Policemen here:

Download Sleeping Policemen’s free EP on EardrumsPop here

…and I can’t resist adding a Dark Captain song as well: