Isn’t it wonderful when hip-ass comedians join forces with hip-ass musicians to make something that’s just, you know, fun? Although at CMJ, like, five years ago, the guy in front of me in line at the Bowery Ballroom was the last guy let into the venue to see The New Pornographers. I literally had the velvet rope clicked into place in front of me, like, “that’s right, you’re the cut-off, everybody up until RIGHT HERE was fit to enter.” Sigh.
The week before Thanksgiving, I had the pleasure of doing a phone interview with Jon Wurster, writer, humorist and, most pertinent to the assignment, drummer for the mighty Superchunk (among others, including Bob Mould and The Mountain Goats). The resulting profile feature for Creative Loafing is here; below is the full transcript of our conversation. Photo courtesy of Merge Records and Jason Arthurs.
So, Superchunk is on its, what, 11th return to form? Every time you put out a record, it “sounds just like the last record” and at the same time is a “stunning return to form.”
JW: Right. I guess it does kind of. I guess the other side of that is every time the band puts a record out, they say it’s their best record. You just do what you do, and your can’t really worry what everyone’s going to think about it. But I think it’s probably close to that early punky, poppy sound of those first handful of records, so I could see why people would say that.
Were you ready to go back to Superchunk full time?
JW: No, and we’re not. [Laughs] I don’t think we ever planned on going back to anything like we had been doing for that 11-year stretch, or whatever it was, ’91 to 2001. We would tour so much and record so much, it was a full-time job, and everyone has kind of moved on in their lives to different things. It’s so much fun to come back to it in this way now, where you don’t have to think about it like, I’m kind of saddled to this for most of this year. We have blocks of things we’ll do, and one-off stuff, and we’ll plan our lives around that, Mac and Laura do Merge, people do Portastatic, I play with different people. Stuff moves around the other stuff, and that’s what makes it fun to go back to on occasion. You’re refreshed and excited, whereas in the past, toward the end of that stretch especially we were all kind of burned out on it, you just get tired of it, like anything you’re doing full time, you hit a wall at some point. Speaking for myself, I hit that wall. It was time to step away from it for a while. Continue reading