L.A. based musician George Lewis Jr. aka Twin Shadow is famous for his fantastic mixture of pop and 80s new wave inspired by Can and David Bowie. He releases his new album ‘Confess‘, today, the follow-up to 2010’s highly acclaimed ‘Forget‘ and at the weekend’s Les Ardentes, we were privileged to be privy to a first listen. We spoke with the Pitchfork darling right after the concert about his new album, the festival season and plans for the future.
Your new album ‘Confess’ is coming out this month. How’s it different from your debut in 2010?
I didn’t try to do anything different really, but as a person I’ve changed a lot. It’s kind of a document of how I’ve changed as a person. It’s a natural thing, I didn’t try to push it in any way.
In what way did you change?
Haha, that’s hard to explain. I don’t know. I mean, that’s a hard thing to say but the record is more aggressive, more direct. I think I’ve become more aggressive and direct as a person.
Each of your albums got amazing reviews from music gurus Pitchfork. How important is that to you?
It helps me sell tickets to shows! That’s the reality of it. I don’t care what people say, negative or positive. But it helps when people say good things. We got the ‘best new music’ from Pitchfork today and I think that’s going to be very helpful. It’s nice to be recognised for your work. I’m happy to be on the winning end of it. But I have friends’ bands who don’t get good reviews and I think they are the best bands in the world, so…It feels a bit random at times.
I really like your song Tyrant Destroyed, by the way, can you tell me more about that?
It’s the title of a Nabokov novel. It’s basically about me being a bastard. About me ruining something that was perfect.
Are you playing a lot of festivals this summer? Where’ve you been already, and where are you off to after this?
I don’t really know actually, I don’t pay attention to our schedule. I just go with the flow and it’s all good.
What’s been your favourite festival so far?
I think it’s called Off Festival, in Poland. That was one of my favorites. The Polish audience is amazing. They’re crazy. It’s super packed, everyone knows the songs, it’s very passionate.
What was your worst experience at a festival?
We’ve played some German festival two weeks ago and the tech guys were horrible to us, we just couldn’t get along with them.
Do you prefer playing at festivals or in clubs?
Definitely in clubs. It’s not as chaotic. You show up, you have a long soundcheck… here you’re just rushing all the time and have to be as quick as you can.
Any crunchy festival anecdotes?
Today, during the concert a girl, in the audience pulled out her breast and licked it. That was pretty nice!
Do you write songs when you’re on the road?
I tried, but it usually doesn’t work out. There’s just too much going on. There’s not enough time in one place to really focus.
What’s the most useful thing you’ve learned playing at festivals?
Drink a lot of water!
What’s the biggest crowd you ever played?
We opened for The Strokes once. I think there were like 25,000 people. It was crazy. No one was there to see us, of course. But it was really cool to just look out and see people until you can’t see anymore.
We’re in the midst of working on our next edition, the pink issue. What’s pink music for you?
Definitely Marvin Gaye.
What are your plans for after the festival season?
Drive my motorcycle.
And what are the plans for the band?
Teach them how to drive motorcycles!twinshadow.net