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Yeasayer Play Elsewhere’s 2nd Anniversary

on their fifth lp ‘erotic reruns,’ brooklyn experimental and indie-pop stalwarts yeasayer have crafted a fine-tuned collection of instantly addictive, danceable tracks, further cementing their status as one of the most consistently inventive bands to emerge from the brooklyn’s late 00’s indie scene.

the band will make their elsewhere debut on 10/31 as part of elsewhere’s second anniversary. ahead of the show, they took the time to answer a few of our questions about their new record.

how are the lyrics in ‘erotic reruns’ informed by the melody? do you place more importance on one or the other?

I always think melody is more important than lyrics, but it’s always better to have a clever lyric that synchs up with the melody nicely.

describe a typical day in the studio upstate.

We started the day with some freeform jams, experimenting with synths and sequencers, switching instruments, and just letting the recording roll. Then we’d try to revise song structures from already recorded demos and bash out multiple takes until we had a basic backing track that we were happy with. Keep lunch to a minimum, feast at dinner, drink until we fall asleep at the mics during late night jam sessions.

in your music videos, you appear in alternate universes / realities. where do these worlds come from? are they utopias / dystopias, a reflection of the real world or new worlds entirely?

It’s been such a thrill to create songs and then have all these talented artists run wild with their visions. We pretty much just choose artists whose work we respect, and try to keep feedback to a minimum. If you look up Yeasayer and Mixtape Club, Radical Friend, Andreas Nilsson, Sophia Peer, Timothy Saccenti, Mike Anderson, Theodore Sefzic, Panda Panther you’ll find quite a variety of distorted realities, but you’ll have to consult those directors on the meaning.

how did your DIY approach to ‘erotic reruns’ influence its sound?

The album doesn’t necessarily sound DIY – we tried to approach the material as professionally as possible. This time without any label support we just had to rely on the kindness of friends with studios and fancy mics in order to achieve the polished sounds we’ve grown accustomed to. Our main recording engineer and mixer Daniel Neiman was able to do a lot with our cobbled together recordings.

yeasayer is always experimenting, never confining itself to a single genre. what would you say is the common thread that ties your records together?

We are chameleons and our sound is hard to pin down, except I’d say that we always try to inject each song with our three voices, to give that specific Yeasayer sound. Also I’d like to think the songs are all catchy and the productions are imaginative.

Interview by Natalia Shen

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