Anton Corbijn Funeral was released in 2004, Neon Bible was released in 2007…
- Posted on Sep 20th 2010 11:30AM by Jenny Charlesworth
You would think, then, that Pallett might have gotten used to this thing we call 'friendly competition.' Apparently not, though. The Torontonian, who's up for yet another Polaris on Monday (Sept. 20), this time for the poetic 'Heartland,' still has a hard time playing the part of nominee.
"It's a very weird thing to all of a sudden have something you've made be put in direct competition with other things," Pallett tells Spinner. "And then be asked questions why your thing is better than other people's things, that's weird. We're not English people -- you ask us why our record is going win, we're not going to respond, 'Because it's the f---ing best record.' We're going to kind of shrug our shoulders and say, 'Oh, I don't know,' because that's what Canadians do."
"I have mixed feelings about pretty much every experience I'm in," he continues, "whether it's playing with puppies or visiting a war memorial, so I also really do appreciate Polaris and think it's a really wonderful thing."
Ironically, the ultra-cheerful multi-instrumentalist is all too happy to talk up his fellow nominees, fawning over Tegan and Sara's 'Sainthood,' which he calls "amazing," and Radio Radio and Karkwa's respective discs. When it comes to Caribou's 'Swim,' Pallett doesn't so much fawn as he does gush like an hysterical 15-year-old who just brushed past Justin Bieber in the mall.
"I think it's one of the best records I've ever heard, let alone one of the best records released this year," he says of the album released by his former roommate, who also happens to have a Prize to his credit (Caribou, aka Dan Snaith, won in 2008 for 'Andorra'). "I"m not going to be 'Canadian' about it: I've never head an electronic record that has so much warmth. It has this beautiful plaintive quality, it's like sad dance music, and is like this thing that I always wanted and never knew I wanted."
"From a production standpoint," Pallett adds, "it's incredibly cutting-edge, but then it's content recalls early Depeche Mode. It's basically like he put all my favourite musical ingredients together into my favourite record."
While Pallett doesn't pay it nearly as much lip service, nor demonstrate anywhere close to the unbridled adoration thrown at 'Swim,' the 31-year-old composer makes it known that he is also majorly "rooting" for the Kenyan-born, Ontario-raised, and now, Vancouver-based rapper Shad.
"I think there is an incredible amount of Canadian hip-hop that just doesn't have the glamour, the money, the engine that American hip-hop has going behind it," says Pallett, "and that someone was able to make a record like 'TSOL,' with his means, in this country, and in this cultural climate... incredible. It's a fantastic record."
Ultimately, Pallett insists that all of the records that landed on the 2010 Short List are deserving of the big prize (okay, so maybe he didn't outright plug his own effort, 'Heartland,' but we'll go ahead and do that for him). So whoever walks away the victor at Monday's gala, will be fine by him. "It's just a bunch of people patting each other on the back and giving each other thumbs up," he laughs, "nothing to worry about."