AUGURIES OF INNOCENCE

And the punk legend reveals that poet and artist William Blake has exerted an enormous influence on the album...

PATTI SMITH has revealed that WILLIAM BLAKE will “walk within” her next album.

And speaking to NME.COM last week from Slovenia, she said that she may consider recording it in London.

Smith, who plays Ocean in Hackney, London, on July 23 and 24, said a lot of material has already been written with her band – which includes Patti Smith Group members JD Daugherty on drums and Lenny Kaye on guitars.

And she added: “I really believe my Blake studies will be part of my next record. Blake will walk within our next record.”

She explained that her Blake studies began in earnest after someone from the Tate Britain museum and art gallery heard her mention at her last London rock gig that she had visited the graveyard where poet and artist is buried, Bunhill Fields.

“When they had their Blake show they invited me over to do something special and for that I started really studying him, and it’s become a huge study for me, it’s penetrating my music and my ‘drawlings’. It just shows that a seed is planted and it just grows and grows, and I’m sure that that will all surface in our next record. And it’s all from that, just going on a rainy afternoon to visit his humble little grave.”

Asked if she would consider taking the influence further and recording in London, she conceded: “It’s possible, I’ve never recorded [a full album] in London, but I think that would be great. [My last album, 2000’s] ‘Gung Ho’ was mixed in London and I recorded and mixed the song ‘China Bird’ from it there. But that’s a good idea, perhaps we’ll do that.”

Smith also spoke of her hatred of the commercialisation of music and her disgust with the channels that promote it.

“It’s the whole attitude of our planet now, everything is so materialistic. You’ve got music channels like MTV and VH1 that I think are disgusting, the stuff they do is disgusting. They just glamorise all the bullshit and the lifestyle and peripheral crap, and hardly anything is really said about music.

“They have no real responsiblity to the culture or any revolutionary ideas, they’re just basically trying to make money with their music channels There’s a new show called ‘Band On The Run’ or something, five rock n roll bands competing, and the one that wins will get 50,000 dollars and stardom.

“That’s like sending a signal that essentially what you’re trying to do is get rich and famous and the idea of music or what one is trying to say within their music is never even talked about.”

Click back to NME.COM features to read a full interview soon.