Christa Titus of Billboard magazine recently conducted an interview with THE CULT singer Ian Astbury. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:Q: For people who will hear THE CULT for the first time with this record, what would you like them to get out of it? Astbury: "A life-changing experience. Spiritual upliftment. Some kind of an awakening, hopefully. I think one thing about this record is, it has all the ingredients in it. The teeth and claws haven't been taken out of it. It's not a nice little domesticated indie house pet. A lot of stuff was written in wild places: (while) denizens of Paris, (while) stuck in lodges in the Himalayas and (during) white-out snow storms." Q: How does your extensive traveling inform your creative process? Astbury: "It keeps my perspective fresh, keeps experience fresh, and it really makes me appreciate places that I'm in when I return to them. It's like, Los Angeles can become quite lethargic, the same tone, the same weather. You go, 'Well, I'll do it tomorrow.' But you come to New York, it sort of forces you to get things done ... to be productive." Q: What songs came together especially well on "Born Into This"? Astbury: "'Holy Mountain' is probably the pinnacle for me ... it involves my girlfriend and (a time) in life where I felt kind of like, I won't say washed up, but I definitely felt drained. I felt frustrated and I felt undynamic and went on this journey and ended up at Everest. So that song is literally the zenith, the high point, and everything sort of flows down from that song." Q: Why re-form THE CULT? Astbury: "I learned so much with (RIDERS ON THE STORM) ... I learned a lot about performance from these guys. I learned about space, holding the space, being in the space (and) improvisations. And that really led me to think, 'Wait a minute. I thought I knew everything about performance. I know squat about performance.' I just really felt I had something to say, really had some strong material, and I felt the best possible place for this was THE CULT." Read the entire interview at www.reuters.com.