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When I began the process, I thought I’d have a 200 page manuscript by the end of that summer. Gary Klebe said, “No, this is going to be like a Shoes record. It’s going to take longer than you thought, but it’s going to be better than you thought.” He was right. Three years later, it’s a 500 page, wide-ranging consideration of the entire music industry over the last 40 years. Not what I envisioned at first, but much better.
JULIA HOLTER: It’s usually pretty intuitive but it’s hard to know at one point when my brain is doing what. I change things depending on the song sometimes..there are certain things you have to do quickly like getting ideas out. You have to catch in real time what your brain is trying to get out and it’s hard to know how much of that is your thoughts and how much is actually something you are consciously figuring out
Six years back, San Francisco’s LSD and the Search for God released a five-song EP of top-shelf shoegaze, then went quiet. Now, with a series of new singles on the horizon, singer-guitarist Andy Liszt called to discuss LSD’s past and future trips.
Zac Carper of FIDLAR talks to The Big Takeover about their new self-titled LP, getting high, and a world minus Chris Brown.
The ex-Stranglers front-man discusses his new album Totem & Taboo, God, Arthur Lee, Jan Svankmajer, Manuel de Falla, Henry Moore and more.
I’m not into shoegaze music so much, it’s kinda boring. I want to hear a song. I think shoegaze was a great thing at one time, but now it’s all about delay and what pedals you have. I love crazy sounds and feedback, but there has to be a song.
After an 8-year hiatus, the influential “ex-singer of Miracle Legion” has overcome tragedy, revisited his roots, and redefined himself on new LP.
We have a nice, brief chat with Vinny Peculiar and Paul “Bonehead” Arthurs about their debut album, their new project, and the specter of the past.
For the first time in 16 years, the Stranglers are returning to tour North America, where today they are releasing “Giants,” their 17th studio album. J.J. Burnel: “There are ups and downs. At the moment, we are in a very big up.”
We have a chat with Matt Baber and Joff Winks of British-based Sanguine Hum, wherein we discuss the band’s recording process, their latest album, and the continuum of their friendship and musical collaborations.
Our future plans are to crush the pop world, make it bend to our will, and install Tatiana as the new un-spoilable, folk-rock, high priestess of pop.
When people receive you quite well and like what you do, you can’t help but be influenced by that, and feel like you want to make something people will like. But we tried to do what we do, and make songs that we like, and not think about it too much.
Sunny indie-pop composer Allen Clapp’s latest album with his band The Orange Peels will shock longtime fans. We talk with Clapp about this darker direction and about taking risks with an established sound.
Cosy Moments, out today, ends the space-rockers’ uncharacteristic six-year hiatus. Singer-guitarist Chris Martin explains.
The fact that someone has taken something you have written, recorded and then taken their own time not only to listen to it, but write and tell other people means more than anything I could possibly put into words.
I can’t just sit around strumming a guitar for fun anymore. I can only last a few minutes. So having all these poems sitting around has helped me to finish songs more quickly, and the words are somewhat more intentional and vivid, because they were meant to be able to stand on their own.
‘90s dream-pop favorites return this month with Ultramarine, their first LP in 14 years.
Catching up with the 4AD folk-pop outfit on the eve of their sophomore album’s release.
In the late 80’s, the scene in New York City had more going on than just slam dancing and hell raising. The city was also a legitimate melting pot of kids of all races, all classes and all religions.
When we started off playing punk rock, when I was a young man, the world was filled with warmongering, sexism, racism, greed – and it seems to me all these same things are still here. And they need fighting, they need people to rally against issues like that.
HVG has a weird intensity that makes it not regular pop, but also has a melodicism that is inviting. We kind of glower at you and serenade you at the same time.
Long-running and prolific band The Mommyheads’ latest effort is a radical, shocking departure from their long-familiar sound. Adam Elk talks about their stunning new album and what led them to making a prog-pop record.
It still amazes us when a support band turns up with a plectrum and a tuner and expect us to provide a full backline. We tend to tell them to get back on the tube and sort themselves out!
My Mom had it in her mind that (Nardwuar) was interviewing me and someone was going to be playing the tape, so she had to keep really quiet in the background… She and my son were, like, whispering and staying really quiet, and then Nardwuar goes, “TELL ME ABOUT THE NIGHT WHEN YOU WERE GOING TO PHOTOGRAPH IGGY AND HE PULLED HIS C**K OUT!” And I just went bright red.
The best music ingrains itself into your being and helps get us through our lives, marking milestones and watershed moments in our lives.
All the cool modern shoegaze bands I know are punk rock people at heart, they show up on the stage to GO OFF, not to piddle with their reverb pedal and pretend to be cool.
We talk with Jason Lytle about his lovely new album, his philosophy of nature, his thoughts on touring, and what he’d like to do in the future.
In this day and age, everything needs to be sold with a catch phrase; if it takes more than 15 seconds or a sentence to explain, people are on to the next thing.
White Laces sound like distant relatives of Swervedriver or Dinosaur Jr, but it’s easy to tell that right away that they are ultimately headed in a different direction, one that is unplanned and largely uncharted.
If you’ve never heard of Life’s Blood, then here is everything you need to know. They are, first and foremost, a New York City hardcore punk band that is both fondly remembered by some and reviled by others.
Landing have been called many things, including ambient rock, slowcore, instrumental (even though they aren’t), shoegaze, Mormon (even though they aren’t) and even space rock, a tag which they’ve learned to embrace. All of these things have served them well in one capacity or another with different audiences since they began in the late 1990’s in Provo, Utah.
For The Plastic Billionaires second release, they undertook a monumental task. They decided to re-record Brian Eno‘s 1974 classic, Taking Tiger Mountain (by strategy) in it’s entirety.
We talk with Swedish artist Tobias Isaksson, whose third band, Azure Blue, is a radical departure from his lovely sunshine pop of previous bands Irene and Laurel Music; his story is enhanced by the surprising commercial and critical success in Sweden and around the world.
Matthew Sims, leader of British band it hugs back, discusses the struggles and the hassles behind the making of their fine sophomore album, Laughing Party.
“We are both Southern born and bred. I think having that common background in the South, with all of its grandeur and undeniable flaws, pretty much permeates everything we do.”
Sid Vicious once got emotional about [a Kinks’] song with me in the Speakeasy Bar in London (forget which one), but I didn’t take it seriously…
It was like being the passenger in a stolen car piloted by reckless young men with a serious death wish, and every time I thought we were going to crash, they somehow steered around the obstacle and kept on going. Some nights I was physically and emotionally drained after writing all day, and I would lie in bed thinking about the story and wondering how they managed to keep going for so long.
Ethan Miller, leader of San Francisco-based Howlin Rain, talks about the making of his band’s exciting new album, and the art of sequencing albums.
It’s about making a monument to our imagination and trying to create something that is beyond ourselves.
The songs are often straightforward pop songs, but they’re pop songs with a twist. I’m not saying that we’re avant garde or experimental, because we aren’t really, but I really hope that we are subversive in some way, even if it’s just subliminal.
A chat with the Belle & Sebastian guitarist about going solo, getting older, and Glasgow pride.
Haze-loving minimalist pop songwriter Benoit Pioulard discusses his latest project, a collaborative duo that finds him expanding and developing on his distinctive songwriting.
I generally find that intention doesn’t come into the music part of record-making all that much – you just kinda start, and then sooner or later a direction makes itself apparent, and the momentum of that carries you through to the end.
It was easy to yodel after I heard some guy on a tape doing it in a very cool old-fashioned way. I mean, the style, the history, the nostalgia for a time different than the present, there was so much romance in the music that… learning anything musical from that era came charged with all these other feelings and sentiments.
Fan Modine’s Gordon Zacharias talks about his third album, the creative process, and the life and times of the one-man studio wizard.
Mr. Newcombe drops some knowledge. We should all heed his words.
I quit painting many years ago to focus on music. And shoegaze / effect-based music was a natural fit for me due to the experimentation and lush beauty involved. It’s like painting for your ears.
Everything we like about the Blurries is born from what we were doing wrong as Slider Pines. Even now, we use that band name (which is god-awful) as a reverse rally cry for doing things better, or just differently.
Never attempt to recreate what’s already been done, where’s the thrill in that?