Yeasayer will appear at the The Music Hall of Willamsburg this evening in support of their new album, Fragrant World. So we took some time to chat with band member Chris Keating about the new album, their decision to release it early via an Internet scavenger hunt and the amazing music videos they have become known for.
And, for all those who copuldn’t score tickets to tonight’s show, head to YouTube this evening as Bowery Presents will be streaming the concert starting at 10.
The most interesting thing about Yeasayer’s new album, Fragrant World, is the band’s decision to release it this month early via an intricate Internet scavenger hunt, with different songs located in different location. While the album won’t be officially released until August 20, most fans have already heard most of the new songs. The idea however is one the band has been planning, and not a last minute decision like it might seem.
“Our last album [Odd Blood] leaked online and it was kind of a bummer because we had no control over it,” Keating explains. “So you start to ask, ‘How are people accessing music?’ and this is the idea we came up with. Plus [visual artist] Yoshi [Sodeoka] made all these cool videos.”
Cool videos are something the band has become known for, and Keating seems more shell-shocked over how awful other band’s videos are than happy for any praise he receives. “So many bands just have shitty music videos. And there are so many talented people out there. Go out and find a great artist and team up with them.”
Art also played heavy into the cover of the new album. “We were playing around with arrhythmia,” Keating explains. “Using body movements and gestures to create a new language. We took photos of a dancer and played around conceptualizing it.”
As for the influences on the new album, there is quite an eclectic mix – Timbaland, Brian Eno, White Noise and Mount Kimbie to name just a few.
Also an eclectic mix is the television shows that have features Yeasayer music, from 90210 to The Good Wife. When asked if there is any trepidation about featuring their songs on a show, Keating is quick to say that has never been an issue. “Our last album did not sell enough to make a living, and with these TV shows you are getting real money. I mean, I don’t really know or watch the shows, but this is the reality of the life of a band.”