Magnetic Fields

The Magnetic Fields (named after the André Breton/Philippe Soupault novel Les Champs Magnétiques)[1] is an American indie pop group founded and led by Stephin Merritt. He is the group’s primary songwriter, producer and vocalist, as well as frequent multi-instrumentalist. The Magnetic Fields is essentially a vehicle for Merritt’s songwriting, as are various side-projects, such as The 6thsFuture Bible Heroes and The Gothic Archies. While the musical style of the band is as malleable as Merritt’s songwriting, its songs are commonly attributed to pop genres such as synthpop, indie pop, Baroque popand noise pop. The band is often cited[citation needed] as being recognizable by Merritt’s lyrics, often about love and often with irregular or neutral gender roles, that are by turns ironic, tongue-in-cheek, bitter, and humorous.

The band released their debut single “100,000 Fireflies” in 1991, which was typical of the band’s earlier career characterized by synthesized instrumentation by Merritt with lead vocals provided by Susan Anway (and then by Stephin Merritt himself from The House of Tomorrow EP onwards). A more traditional band later materialized, currently composed of Merritt, Claudia Gonson, Sam Davol, and John Woo, with occasional guest vocals by Shirley Simms. Their best-known work is the 1999 three-volume concept album 69 Love Songs. It was followed in the succeeding years by a “no-synth” trilogy: i(2004), Distortion (2008),[2] and Realism (2010). The band’s most recent album, Love at the Bottom of the Sea, was released in 2012.

Matt Nathanson - The Last Of The Great Pretenders

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Matt Nathanson was joined by producers Jake Sinclair and Mike viola for the recording of his latest release, The Last Of The Great Pretenders. Click here to buy the record.

modern love.

an album.
a collection of songs.
short stories. tied together.
peoples stories. about love.
about faith in others. or loss of faith in others.
everyone i know was going through personal relationship crisis.
divorce. affairs. being alone. being newly in love.
i was watching the people around me struggle and transition.
the songs are about them. about me.
the struggle to actually love
and find love.
and accept love when someone is actually giving it to you.

the title: opposing ideas banging against each other.
modern vs. love.
cold vs. hot.
hard vs soft
fabricated vs. organic.
angular vs. curvaceous!
how do they exist together.

records to me have always been uncomfortable to make.
they’ve always felt unnatural.
this one felt natural.
we hung the production on the beating heart. the song. the voice.
the production is loops… with real drummers, sometimes 2 or 3.
acoustic instruments against synths.
organic against synthetic.
the production is inspired by the futuristic throw of those 80s
records i love.
and how they made me feel.

tears for fears ‘songs from the big chair’
depeche mode ‘violator’
inxs ‘kick’
echo and the bunnymen ‘songs to learn and sing’
david bowie ‘let’s dance.’
where the kick drum sounded and promised an amazing future.
this was the idea for the production.
at the time those records didn’t sound current.
they sounded like what was going to be.
it wasn’t so much about copying the sonics of those records..
but trying to emulate the EFFECT those records had on me.
how they made me feel.
how they STILL make me feel.
classic songs. great singing. wrapped in the future.
a human heart beating inside technology. inside what would be cold
and empty without the soul.
but they work together.
towards something bigger, grander than the sum of the parts.

“kiss quick” informed the rest of the record.
it started one way. we beat the shit out of it. pushed it around.
re-recorded the drums. built a loop. re-recorded the guitars.
the keyboards.
it was the lynch pin.
it was the road map for the rest of the album.
we went back and re-recorded from there.
cut loose the things that didn’t fit.
the idea was… future. where does love live in the future?
in a ‘room at the end of the world?’ at the ‘bottom of the sea?’

fascinated with japan.
a place where modern architecture was smashed up against tradition.
against history.
bullet trains. everything moving fast
i read a ton of haruki murakami.
sexuality. and lust. against the cold backdrop of tradition
‘room at the end of the world’ came from this.

ended the “some mad hope” tour in australia.
same idea. same inspiration..
fascinated by the modern architecture there
and how it pushes right up against the outback.
cutting edge smashed against brutal, water starved, uninhabitable nature.
how these cutting edge, progressive cities sit on the rim of the totally untamed.
and keep expanding out into it.
the push of the city.
we move fast. we build things to move us faster.
where does the soul go in that?
“love comes tumbling down” came from that.

where does desire live? where does actual molten human emotion live in
a culture with facebook and twitter and light speed?
where do the molten parts of ourselves come out?
in art.
in music.
in the groove.
in the voice! the voice is the vehicle..
in the creative life. living creatively.
and using technology to your advantage.
as a platform for creative exploration.
not being scared. being excited.
“faster” came from this.

people misdirect their passion. their attention.
off themselves. onto celebrity.
every time i think it’s bad, it gets worse.
the idea that someone else’s life
is more fascinating than their own
we are being DEVOURED by this.
pulling away at the sand under our feet.
“modern love” came from this.
“mercy (less drowning, more land)” came from this.

i made so many records before. with a band. in a room.
this record started that way.
it started with that human element.
then the songs went into the lab.
into mark’s garage in los angeles.
mark and i tinkering. pulling them apart.
swapping parts.
back and forth.
bringing in different people. different ingredients.
not settling.
making technology work for/with heart and soul and blood.

build the songs around static loops. layer drummers in.
don’t play acoustic guitar.
write the songs without having played them first.
songs built around ideas. kick out the slats of the pen.
it’s not about limits. it’s about limitless.
we had SO MANY TALENTED PEOPLE at our disposal. use them. no rules.
build a rocket. see how far you get.
this was the first record that i started to let go of the fear.
the judgments.
and embrace the possibility.

this record feels like a beginning.
i had done the singer/songwriter thing. (8 albums of it!)
i didn’t want to be defined by only that.
the success of ‘some mad hope’ was so validating.
being able to rub shoulders with my heroes.
to have that access.
to play bigger stages.
to hear my songs in arenas.
to befriend people who inspired me to reach further.
i am who i am waiting for.
i can be the person who makes the music that i want to hear.
that inspired me. I AM THEM.
“run,” my collaboration with jennifer and kristian, came from this.

it’s ok to show joy. it’s ok to be sexy.
in the grooves. in the voice. in the riffs.
“queen of (k)nots.” “mercy”.. those are RIFFS!
i had never built songs around riffs before.
it was SO LIBERATING.
i embraced that the record needed to be bigger than me.
that i needed to let go. and let what was in me out.
i needed to dissolve into the fabric.
unapologetically embrace sexuality. sound.
inhabit the art.
it started really being about honesty.
in the DNA of the songs. in the singing.
be less concerned with what “they” think
and more focused on what I want.
finally.

– Matt Nathanson

RDIO SESSION - Kasabian

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Kasabian (/kəˈseɪbiən/ kə-say-bee-ən) are an English rock band formed in Leicester[12] in 1997. The band’s original members consisted of vocalistTom Meighan, guitarist and vocalist Sergio Pizzorno, guitarist Christopher Karloff, and bassist Chris Edwards. The band’s line-up was completed by drummer Ian Matthews in 2004 after a string of session drummers. Karloff left the band in 2006 and founded new band Black Onassis. Jay Mehlerjoined as touring lead guitarist in 2006. Mehler left the band for Liam Gallagher‘s Beady Eye in 2013. Kasabian are often seen as one of the best British bands of the 21st century[13] and, in 2010, won the Q Award for ‘Best Act in the World Today’. They are well known for being commended for their live performances, being named ‘Best Live Band’ at the award ceremonies on numerous occasions. The band’s music is often described as “indie rock”, but Pizzorno has said he “hates indie bands” and does not feel Kasabian fit into that category.[14]

Kasabian have released five studio albums – Kasabian (2004), Empire (2006), West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum (2009), Velociraptor! (2011), and 48:13 (2014). The band’s music has been described as a mix between The Stone Roses and Primal Scream with the swagger of Oasis.[3] Their music has won them several awards and recognition in the media, including a Brit Award in 2010 for Best British Group,[15] and their live performances are generally lauded, the most notable of which was their appearance as headliners at the 2014 Glastonbury Festival.

Christopher Owens - A New Testament

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In March 2014, Owens shared the track, "It Comes Back to You", writing that the song was "from a new album I've made with dear friends".[13] Then in May, Owens followed this up with "Stephen", saying, "I think it's a song unlike anything I've ever worked on."[14] In July, Owens shared the album cover and track listing plus a video for the single, "Nothing More Than Everything To Me", directed by Max Minghella, announcing that A New Testament would be released at the end of September accompanied by a North America and UK tour.[15]

In a statement accompanying this announcement, Owens wrote that A New Testament was "inspired by the fundamentals of American music—GospelCountryR&B," and was a demonstration of "honest, earnest, simple songwriting—'three chords and the truth'".[16] He also shared that he worked on the album with many of the musicians from GirlsFather, Son, Holy Ghost (2011), including guitarist John Anderson, drummer Darren Weiss and keyboardist Danny Eisenberg, and Lysandre producer Doug Boehm.

In an interview with Pitchfork in July, Owens shared that A New Testament was strongly influenced by the music he grew up with: the simple, country-influenced guitar music he played in the Children of God, and the AM radio he heard while working for the late Stanley Marsh 3 in Amarillo, Texas. Owens also commented on the more "lighthearted" nature of A New Testament, saying that he is "happy. And if some of that came out on the record, that's good. I don't want to be afraid to show that. People like me for being this down-and-out character, but I’m sorry, I'm not your Jesus. Don't hand me that cross. I refuse to play along." Owens attributed his relative contentment to the stable, long-term relationship he is in with Dominant Legs singer Hannah Hunt, and the improved relationship with his estranged father, who he refers to in the song "Stephen".[17]

In August, Owens performed acoustic renditions of "I Just Can’t Live Without You (But I'm Still Alive)", "Nothing More Than Everything To Me" and the unreleased "Brian Deneke" (named for the 19-year-old punk musician of the same name, who was killed in a deliberate hit-and-run attack in 1997) in London.[18] In the middle of September, Owens released the cowboy-themed music video for "Never Wanna See That Look Again", directed by Aaron Brown.[19] A week ahead of its release, A New Testament started streaming in full via Pitchfork Advance.[20]

Notably, a few songs on A New Testament originated from Owen's time in Girls: "Overcoming Me" was first written in January 2008, "Stephen" around 2010, while "Oh My Love" first premiered in July 2010.[21] Owens commented on this, saying, "For me, the songs are good when they preserve a moment that I can always go back to. They serve as a little porthole to that very strong, real memory I had when I wrote it and I like that."[22] In addition, despite the album's forays into gospel music, the opening number "My Trouble Heart" re-writes Peter, Paul and Mary's 1962 song "Early in the Morning" from a godless perspective. "I’m a very firm atheist. I never have believed in god," Owens states.[23]

Christopher Owens - Lysandre

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Chris Owens was in with Producer Doug Boehm working on his 2nd solo album. Here is an excerpt of his interview with Pitchfork.

Sitting on a couch in bright pink pants and a green blazer, Christopher Owens is talking about the end of Girls. The 33-year-old San Francisco songwriter– one of the most open and honest (and best) of his generation– goes on about the dissolution of his beloved former band, basically uninterrupted, for 15 minutes straight. As he describes his relationship with Girls co-founder JR White as well as the band’s varied cast of supporting players, his face contorts, relaxes, wells-up. It’s heartbreaking to watch; he approaches his tale with the same sort of unvarnished vulnerability found in his songs. I don’t dare stop him.

His entire story– transcribed in full below– isn’t terribly dramatic, to be honest. No fistfights, no lawsuits. Instead, it’s about growing apart and the sometimes-heavy weight of unmet expectations. It makes me think back to Girls’ remarkable 2009 video for “Hellhole Ratrace”, which showed a group of friends– some of them one-time Girls members, some not– falling in love with life and each other in haunting slow motion. It’s a moment, perfectly crystallized. But just as that snapshot couldn’t last, neither could Girls.

For Owens, though, Girls was the beginning. He sees himself as a lifer, a guy who’ll one day have 20 different albums stacked next to each other inside record-store bins. His official solo debut, the forthcoming Lysandre, is a thematic album about his wide-eyed experiences during Girls’ first tour. It flashes some of the same genre-flipping tendencies as his old band– there are upbeat rockers, acoustic weepers, and even a slinky, sax-laden tune calle “Riviera Rock”– but everything’s presented on a smaller, more intimate scale. Flutes flutter, backup vocals sigh, and the same classical guitar riff shows up again and again throughout. It was partially inspired by the storybooks Owens grew up with in the Children of God cult, but the record also marks a clean break with the singer’s storied, tragic past. The closer, “Part of Me (Lysandra’s Epilogue)”, is about the end of a long-distance love affair, but its chorus sounds endless, universal: “Oh, you were a part of me, but that part of me is gone.”

We spoke in the lobby of the Bowery Hotel around lunchtime, the day after his first ever New York City solo show last month.

“The easiest thing in the world for me to do would have been to make another Girls album. It’s just not what I wanted. I wanted a real band. I wanted the Rolling Stones, the Beatles.”

Pitchfork: Like a lot of people, I was surprised when you announced that you were leaving Girls over the summer. Maybe it was because of the nature of the music, or how strong the band started out, but Girls seemed like something that could last a long time.

Christopher Owens: From the very beginning, I felt that I was going to write songs for the rest of my life. I still feel that way. And the band is something I wanted very badly. I get the feeling people don’t really realize that. They’re like: “You broke up the band.” But I wanted it more than anybody else. The whole thing was my idea. I wanted Girls to last for a very long time.

But right away, there were a lot of disappointments. You try to buckle down and carry on and hope the thing will resolve itself. But then more disappointments come, and they just kept coming. After a little while, I started to realize that the band wasn’t going to last forever. I knew that by the time I was recording [Father, Son, Holy Ghost]. Because I wanted a real band– a group of people that became like a family that wrote and recorded and went on tour together, and evolved through those experiences. Nothing else would have done it for me. But we were replacing members for every other tour; I didn’t feel like I had other people who were maturing along side me. I counted out the amount of people that were in the band over the years. It was 21– a giant amount of people. That’s feeling disappointed 21 times over.

The easiest thing in the world for me to do would have been to make another Girls album. It’s just not what I wanted. I wanted a real band. I wanted the Rolling Stones, the Beatles. But people just kept leaving, for whatever reason. I never fired anybody. Then there was this larger-than-life outside world that came into play.

With the first Girls record, you had two guys, good friends, making an album together at home. I played almost everything on that record. JR played bass, engineered everything, and produced everything. And by the next album, we wanted to record as a four- or five-piece, but that didn’t happen because, before the first album was even released, we had this giant outcry to put a band together quickly. We couldn’t say, “Let’s wait until we find the guy that’s going to stay forever.” We didn’t have that luxury. So what you’d get were people that were in other bands who would play with us and then go back to what they used to do, or quit or whatever, after the shows were done. That’s nobody’s fault. If I would have known then what I know now, I would have said, “Let’s not do all this right away.” Jumping in like that and seizing the opportunity never allowed for us to build a foundation that could survive the test of time.

So after making the first album between the two of us, JR wanted to work with another producer [for the Broken Dreams Club EP], somebody that he could learn from and who could take the songs to the next level. I was totally on board with that. But looking back, maybe we shouldn’t have done that. Maybe we should have made another record between just us because, by [Father, Son, Holy Ghost], JR’s totally giving up the plan, which was for him to build a studio and to produce again after the EP. That was what we both wanted. But because of the touring, he never had the time– it is very hard in San Francisco to find a space that’s cheap, build a studio, buy used equipment. We didn’t have a giant budget to just say: “Give me the finest and set it up.” So we’d get back from tour, and I’d say, “So JR, what’s up with the next record?” “Sorry I haven’t done anything.” I understood. I was right there with him. We were in over our heads.

“There were a lot of people who talked me into touring Father,
Son, Holy Ghost
, but I didn’t even want to do that.
That could have been the end right there.”

So, [for Father, Son, Holy Ghost], he’s saying, “Let’s just totally go for it. Let’s get a great producer. Let’s work in a great studio.” And I’m like, “Yeah, I have songs here that I think could win Grammys.” That was a real conversation. And we did that, and it was great. I wouldn’t change that for anything. But over time, something got very carried away by the force of everything. So at this point, JR hasn’t produced a record since the first one. And 21 people came in and out of the band.

The final straw for me came when my very good friend [guitarist John Anderson], who joined the band just after we recorded the first album, quit for a second time right when we finished recording [Father, Son, Holy Ghost]. He and I were very, very close. There is no one in the world I would rather play with than this guy. It was such a heartbreak. It was a bit too much for me. I wanted to quit then. There were a lot of people around me who talked me into touring Father, Son, Holy Ghost, but I didn’t even want to do that. That could have been the end right there, but we kept it together to tour. I told JR again: “I don’t know how much longer this is going to last.”

For that whole year of touring, I was just laying things out: What should I do? How do I feel about this? There were a lot of things to think about. And then this year, JR told me, “You know, I haven’t produced a record since the first one. I want to get back into doing that, and there’s this [other] band that I want to produce.” I thought for another month and then I said, “OK, when you go to do that, I think I would like to end the project.” We talked it over for a few days and we agreed. It wasn’t a big blow-out or a nasty thing. It was very calm and collected. Then we informed all the band members, and they were supportive. They understood. Nobody in the band was surprised like other people were. Part of your job is to not present to the audience that things are not OK.

When I finally made the decision, I was right there alongside everyone being sad about it. But at the same time, in my mind I was thinking, “What do I do? Make five Girls records and then quit?” There’s just never a good time to quit a band like Girls, because everybody loved Girls, and so did I. I say all these things in retrospect about how we should’ve done this or that, but fuck that: We did what we thought we should do, and it’s all been great. JR’s producing again, I’m continuing to write. This is what I wanted to do from the very beginning: write songs and make records and tour them with a good live band. I can call all the shots, which is what I like to do.

And I can also be crazy. In the past, when I presented to do [Lysandre], it was a little much for everybody. Like, “Oh, a conceptual record– that’s your little story.” But now I can do that. And I want to jump around like this. I mean, everybody’s heads are going to spin on the next record. I know that already. I know I’ll have to get new people, because each record is going to call for different types of musicians. And it’s easier to do that when you’ve given up the idea of keeping a band that’s going to stay together forever.

Pitchfork: Is that why you didn’t just make this solo album and then do the next Girls album afterward?

CO: Well, what I want to do next is not going to be like anything that was in Girls’ realm. I want to go pretty crazy places.

Girls - Broken Dreams Club

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Just three weeks ago, when Girls announced the release of Broken Dreams Club, they also shared a sprawling, handwritten note penned by frontman Christopher Owens. On stationery flipped upside down, Owens scribbled enthusiastically that this EP was their (timely) way of giving thanks to listeners who’ve showered the San Francisco duo with love and support since Album, their lemons-to-lemonade debut, which arrived last September. While insisting that his band’s latest isn’t the sound of them “all grown up,” he described the six songs enclosed as a “LETTER OF INTENT,” a “SNAPSHOT OF THE HORIZON,” and a “step up” from its stunning predecessor.

Girls have grown a lot in the past year. All that time on the road together has provided them with ample opportunity to develop into a tight, fire-breathingband. That’s exactly how they sound here: serious and totally devoted to their craft, despite their image as drug-addled scabs. Album‘s handmade production values were often overlooked– bloodshot at just the right moments, polished thoughtfully in others, haunting at every turn. But this time out, bassist/producer Chet “JR” White really goes for it, letting every flourish and lick sing without sacrificing any of the strung out, open-armed spirit with which he and Owens take to updating American rock’n’roll standards. Whether it’s the whammy bar ripples on its title track, the hot flare of horns in the opener, or even the stereo panning on “Heartbreaker”, White’s work here frames and accentuates the curves of these songs in ways that elevate them all. Those, too, continue to devastate.

We know from interviews and reviews alike that Owens’ back story is big enough to swallow just about any young band. But because of the connective strength of his songwriting, it never did. Singles like “Lust for Life” and “Hellhole Ratrace” transcended and outlasted that initial ruckus: The celebration Owens spun from the sadness in them was something that could be shared, even if his past could put him at an almost alien distance. He has a natural command of his hooks and confessionals, a gift that’s only acquired more compelling shades with time. Take the clarity in his promise of “rock’n’roll, out of control” on “Substance” as just one example, or seconds later, as he coolly announces a guitar solo just before it’s set loose. They’re simple enough, but both jump right off the recording. Elsewhere, lines like those of the aforementioned title track still cut straight to marrow. Over lonesome chords and a few distant strips of pedal steel, Owens hangs his head, “I know you feel like I did, too/ And even though I’m close to you/ I can’t be what you need/ Because, you’re just as lost as me.” As a frontman, Owens has discovered a swagger that matches the deep reserves of melancholy in his voice.

This is still undeniably sad, unsettling music. On flirty opener “Thee Oh So Protective One”, Owens serenades the insecurities of a teenage girl. “He’ll never know about the times that you cried in your bedroom,” he croons. “About the times that you cried in your classroom/ About your mother or your father or the way you got your broken heart.” It’s one of several hearts breaking here, though “Heartbreaker” showcases the improvement in songwriting best, Owens and White continuing to take the love song template they adore and skew it to their liking. Everything just clicks: its simple, elegant construction, its velvety feel, the way its hopelessly lonesome vocal hook washes over Owens’ friendly chord progression. Girls may be only a few releases deep, but those chords sound like theirs alone.

And yet, as much as Broken Dreams Club feels like an improvement upon Albumboth in songwriting and production, this release is clearly about looking forward. The psychedelic haze of “Carolina” is the closest they’ve come to sonically uncapping the pills they’ve been known to romanticize. It’s a wild hybrid of a song that’s intent on stretching out, its opening layer of evil, crying guitar taking on heaps of gauze before ultimately vaulting into a rowdy, bar-band outro at about the six-and-a-half minute mark. In that same letter that promised growth and focus, Owens also said something quite striking in thanks. “All of us have something to say and give and this is what happens when we show a little interest and support in others.” If Broken Dreams Clubis indeed an honest glimpse of what’s ahead, it sounds as though Girls have much more to give.

Incubus - If Not Now When

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Incubus guitarist, Michael Einziger, and singer, Brandon Boyd, were joined by producer Brendan O’Brien at Decibelle for work on their upcoming release. Here is their official bio written (very entertainingly) by Brandon himself :

“(Art)… rescues us from our self chosen triviality, to which we are so prone. It is like a deep organ note that makes my hair stir and a shiver run through me. I ‘pull back’ from life, like a camera taking a long shot with a wide angle lens. I quite simply become aware of more reality than before.” -Colin Wilson (The Occult)

When I first read this quote, it truly effected me. I felt like someone had finally spoken an iota of truth about creativity and the process it allows to both the creator and the observer. It helped certainties that I have held dear for so long, resonate even deeper within me. And it inevitably made me muse about what we do as a band and group of friends who come together and through a symbiotic chaos of sorts make art and sound. The gratitude I and my friends feel is beyond measure. Gratitude for the experience itself and gratitude to the people who have lent us their attention, if even for three and half minutes.

Now on our sixth album, we (Incubus) have been writing music together long enough that there is a sense of perspective available that has only come to us with time. Some of our earlier works, though pure and even fun at times, lent to a sense of disorganization; a readily apparent lack of focus in my opinion. I have always said, “Yeah, we suck…but we’re really good at it!”

‘Light Grenades’ is a very new perspective for Incubus. Working, once again, with Super Producer, ‘Brendan O’Brien’, we spent more time crafting, and sculpting these songs than we ever have historically. Every album we had ever made was written in eight weeks and recorded in eight weeks. A long time by some standards, but alarmingly brief by most. It’s not that we were rushed, we just like working quickly. We wrote twenty-something songs during this sitting. Like proof readers on meth, we devoured songs and only let them live if they excited, surprised and inspired us all! In a nut shell, it took about a year.

‘Dig’ was toiled over the most I remember because it is the kind of song that is completely new to us. Structurally, integrally, and fundamentally different. And thank- f***ing- God. Lyrically, it’s a nod to camaraderie. And without pepperin’ ya’lls interpretation of it too much, it speaks to the importance of forgiveness and compassion. Little alien concepts that some choose to toy with on occasion.

‘A Kiss to Send Us Off’ shows Incubus in our most primal incarnation. It floors you but simultaneously leaves you thinking. But seriously, that song puts my balls in a vacuum cleaner hose and turns the power to 12. It hurts sometimes, but it leaves my balls satisfied and clean. Think about THAT!

‘Anna-Molly’ delivers a similar push but has a far more sophisticated bent, in that it rocks, but conjures imagery of a girl that I can see in my minds eye but most likely doesn’t exist. Therefore being a bit of an anomaly. I guess that is relatively sophisticated…right? f***. I actually hate trying to explain what these or any of our songs mean! And it’s really not fair for me to condescend to do that in the first place. If you care to, let them be about whatever you want. Our single, ‘Megalomaniac’ from our last album (A Crow Left Of the Murder) was interpreted in ways that I never intended. It wasn’t far from home base, but was nowhere near as case specific as it seemed. Which is fine with us. Good! Think of it what you will. And for doG’s sake, start your own band!

While home over the past two years, we had a chance to unpack for the first time in almost a decade. Isn’t it interesting that to so many people we are a new band, while we have been writing music together, for better or worse, for fifteen years now. Coming home in November of 2004 was an important decision. Not only were we road weary and dried up, but each one of us in his own way needed to step back from the monster that we had created and re-access what had transpired.

Michael Einziger, in his down time, wrote original music for a surf documentary entitled ‘Flow’ (Directed by Josh Landon) and was nominated at XDance film festival for best original score. I peed on the same tree as well, but lent my speaking voice to narrate the story of said documentary. And yes, I sounded f***ing sexy. Michael also lent his producing skills to his brother’s band, Agent Sparks, and is also currently involved with the scores of several motion pictures.

I have been feverishly working on the follow up to my self published book entitled, ‘White Fluffy Clouds’, and expect the newbie to be available for criticism by December of 2006. ‘From the Murks of the Sultry Abyss’ is a compendium of images both real and unreal; painted, photographed, scratched and typed.

Jose Pasillas has been exploring his love of art in mixed mediums from canvas, to computer and everything in between. And by day he happily frolics through the grasslands of his hometown with his two feline friends. (Total hippy.)

DJ Chris Kilmore spent the past few years expanding upon his already stellar reputation as a world class DJ by learning and incorporating a bevy of new instruments into our fold. Turntables, the Theremin, and Moog keys have been creeping into our collective via Chris for some time. But the Guitar-o-phone, Mellotron, Fender Roads, and the kitchen sink are welcomed suprises! Thanks Kil.

Ben Kenney has been writing music and performing with his side project, ‘The Division Group’, and produced the latest album from a young band called ‘The Smyrk’.

All this and we still managed to conceive and carry out what I believe to be our most worthy album to date. If ever asked which album I preferred personally in our arsenal of sound, I would invariably tell you that I most liked whatever was the latest. But this time, I really mean it!

I think I can speak for my band when I say that we are interested in movement, experimentation and freedom. Being in this band has allowed us the freedom to move in and around other artistic endeavors. Like meandering streams we each wandered off over the past two years; only to be drawn unconsciously back to the ocean where all streams converge. And thus composed ‘Light Grenades’, our sixth studio album.

What I am getting at (sort of) is that art has rescued us in many ways. Through circumstance, chance, good fortune, a teeny, weeny bit of talent, and an ardor for expressivity, Incubus has survived long enough to garnish a perspective onto itself. “Like a camera taking a long shot with a wide angle lens,” we conjured ‘Light Grenades'; a forty-seven and some odd seconds long bulbous mass of sound and intention captured on tape. ‘Light Grenades’ that explode with consciousness, light, art and mind. If you enjoy it, we thank you. If not? Then my dog is French and he already pooped under your pillow.

-Brandon