Architecture in Helsinki Talk New Album
A few weeks ago, Australian indie pop band Architecture in Helsinki sent out a MySpace message filled with news. In addition to an update about their new album (which we'll get to in just a little bit), the band announced that they have slimmed down to a six-piece, as members Tara Shackell and Isobel Knowles (no relation to Beyonce) have left the group.
"Their presence and pizzazz over the past few years has helped make AIH what we are," the group wrote. "We want to thank them endlessly for their heart and energy and wish them the very best with their future endeavors."
As for their third full-length, the follow-up to last year's In Case We Die, "the jamz are sounding dope, though, we are probably getting a little too into [member] Cameron [Bird]'s Latin percussion drum machines (the Phil Collins influence is definitely putting a damper on that!)"
We got in touch with Bird, who said that Architecture in Helsinki are hard at work on "a little pan-continental cyber-sonic wang-exploration." He provided Pitchfork with a kind of verbal 'blueprint' of the new album.
"I am living in Brooklyn, and everyone else is in Melbourne, that being the Southern Hemisphere," Bird explained of the global songwriting process. "We are literally jamming on Instant Messenger, recording and writing and arranging songs via email. Whether or not it is gonna work out remains to be seen. But we are all holed up in our lounge rooms with our little Pro Tools boxes, trying to write an entire album as a six-piece band without actually looking each other in the eyes."
Slated for a 2007 release, the album currently doesn't have a title, but the MySpace bulletin mentioned that the band is throwing around some "ridiculous working titles." When we asked Bird for specifics, he said, "Most of [these titles] are probably too politically and spiritually insensitive! So, we can just keep 'em in our pants for the time being."
As for potential tracks, titles include, "Same Old Innocence", "Debbie", "Lazy (Lazy)", "Hold Music", "Talk About Flying", "Nothing's Wrong", "Hot to Trot", "Heart it Races", "Red Turned White", "The Opposite", "East 11th", and "Like it or Not". Bird said, "At the Mo' we are demo-ing somewhere between 9 and 12 ditties of a possible 25. Then we try and work out how to play them live."
The band will debut some of these songs on tour this fall, before recording at "our friend Gary's NYC studio around Halloween." Specific collaborators have yet to be hammered down, but Bird is "always on the prowl!", adding, "If anyone knows someone with a harpsichord in NYC, please email us!"
But getting down to brass tacks: what will the new album sound like? Well... maybe like Wu-Tang!
"Last week I would have said it was gonna be an Australian House Record," said Bird, "But since I saw Wu-Tang Clan play last week for the first time, anything could happen... Consider this an open invitation to any Wu- orientated collabz!"
So, Wu-Tang Clan members and harpsichord players, holla at ya boy.
As previously reported, Architecture in Helsinki are also prepping a tour-only remix album, featuring reworkings of In Case We Die songs by Hot Chip, Mocky, Safety Scissors, DJ Medhi, Squeak E Clean, Dat Politics, Isan, and others.
Of the decision to put out a remix album, Bird said, "I feel like collaboration and cross-pollination between artists is such a healthy and inspiring thing to do. There is so much to learn from hearing the way that other brains arrange and produce. Whenever we choose remixers, it is always a case of trying to get inside their brains before you send the track and being like 'hell yeah, I can hear Mocky doing a great version of that'... The 12 or so folks who worked on the record [represent] a good mix of friends and people whose work we admire. I am totally happy with the way it came out."
As for that tour (alongside Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Takka Takka, and the Blow), the band has said that in addition to performing new material, they'll also play a bunch of covers. Of what, exactly? Quipped Bird, "We're changing our name to the Australian Billy Joel Show and doing 13 drum and bass versions of 'We Didn't Start the Fire'." Hmmm...
At the CYHSY and Takka Takka dates, fans can also get their hands on another special tour-only release: an EP featuring live performances by the three bands. Duuuude.
Pan-Continental Cyber-Sonic Wang-Exploration, road version:
09-16 - San Diego, CA - Epicentre #
09-17 - Tempe, AZ - The Clubhouse #
09-19 - Austin, TX - Emo's (Outside Stage) #
09-20 - Houston, TX - Warehouse Live #
09-21 - New Orleans, LA - Howlin' Wolf #
09-22 - Athens, GA - 40 Watt Club #
09-23 - Nashville, TN - Exit In #
09-24 - Charlottesville, VA - Satellite Ballroom #
09-25 - Washington, DC - Black Cat #
09-26 - Boston MA - Avalon *+
09-27 - Northampton, MA - Pearl Street (Downstairs) #
09-28 - New York NY - Central Park Summerstage *+
09-29 - Bennington VT - Bennington College
09-30 - Philadelphia PA - Trocadero *+
10-01 - Cleveland OH - House of Blues *
10-02 - Chicago IL - Vic Theatre *+
10-03 - Chicago IL - Vic Theatre *+
10-04 - Minneapolis MN - First Avenue *+
10-05 - Omaha NE - Sokol Underground
10-06 - Englewood CO - Gothic Theatre *+
10-07 - Boulder CO - Boulder Theater *+
10-08 - Salt Lake City UT - In The Venue (Small Room)
10-10 - Seattle WA - Showbox *+
10-11 - Seattle WA - Showbox *+
10-12 - Portland OR - Crystal Ballroom *+
10-13 - San Francisco CA - Warfield Theatre *+
10-14 - Los Angeles CA - Henry Fonda Theatre *+
10-15 - Los Angeles CA - Henry Fonda Theatre *+
* with Clap Your Hands Say Yeah
# with the Blow
+ with Takka Takka
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