New Pornographers' A.C. Newman Is Going To Start A Jam Band


Songs like "Do Your Own Time" and "Hostages" make demands and present confrontations, but behind them is a clear idea sometimes it isn't about interconnection. In a world where we constantly pretend to connect with each other -- through comment threads and status updates, through Instagram and tweets -- Newman makes a beautiful case for retreat. (Prefix)

Yeah, I hope so. I think that is a big theme on the record. There was a long period where to feel better about life I needed to come out here where there was nothing and it was very serene. 'You Could Get Lost Out Here' and 'I'm Not Talking,' that's pretty much the theme of them. Sometimes I felt like I was on the verge of being a grumpy old hermit. I remember when I moved out to Woodstock and I'd go on tour with the Pornographers and I just felt like, 'Everybody's gotta get out of my face!' Because I was so used to being in a quiet, mellow environment, the hustle and bustle of city life just pissed me off. Going to New York and not being able to get a taxi, like, 'Who the hell would ever wanna live here? You can't even fucking get home!' I've gotten over that now. Now we're finally at a point where we wanna spend more time in the city, maybe because our son is 8 months old and I want him to experience more of the world.

Like Paul McCartney after his Beatles and "Band on the Run" salad days, Newman is settling into a phase in his career as a solo artist in which he can still be inspired without being particularly surprising. (The Current)

Hmmm. Sometimes I have gotten that vibe over the last few years. Some people's reaction is, 'Yeah he made another good record. SO?' You know? It's like, 'Yeah, he's been doing that for years so I'm supposed to write about it because he made another good record?' I think there's an element of novelty that's kinda necessary in this day and age. I think once your band hits the public eye I figure you're allowed to make three albums that sound the same. And then after that you have to move on. There are a couple bands who buck that trend. To name one of my favorite bands: Spoon. They've sounded the same for a decade, but are still amazing. They don't think I'm surprising, huh? I dunno. Interestingly enough, when I'm talking with my band I think there's something about my songs where you don't really understand how complicated they are until you have to sit down and play them. They tell me stuff like, 'This is like triplets with a dotted sixteenth!' and I'll say, 'Well, I don't know what the hell that is but I'm very proud I wrote that!' I think I'm kinda screwed in that way, that I don't even get the credit for being musically complex because my songs sound simple. So I don't even get the prog fans. Maybe someday.

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