Alex Chilton of Big Star, who has died at the age of 59 in New Orleans, La. after…
- Posted on Sep 29th 2010 4:00PM by Kenneth Partridge
Auer and Stringfellow even had plans to record in a 10-day burst in Barcelona, but when the musicians convened beforehand to go over the material, they realized 'Blood/Candy' would be a more musically involved -- and time-consuming -- project.
"It was definitely the rehearsal for the sessions when it became obvious we'd bitten off quite a mouthful to chew," Auer tells Spinner.
Stringfellow says he may have been to blame for steering the enduring Seattle-born power-pop band toward more out-there fare.
"The rehearsal period was pretty illustrative," Stringfellow adds. "There were a couple more straight-ahead songs that Jon had demoed in that spirit of whatever we'd talked about, and when he saw I was kind of floating in space a little more, he realized there wasn't really any commitment to that idea of the straight-ahead record, so he turned around and brought in a couple of very adventurous pieces of music."
"As we started to learn these things we realized, 'Wow, this is going in a whole new kind of landscape, and those songs were also very colorful,'" he adds. "They were suggesting lots of images and possibilities for sound as we rehearsed them -- more than what the four of us could play together."
The new direction meant more time in the studio, and unlike the Posies' last album, 'Every Kind of Light,' which Stringfellow and Auer wrote on the fly in 2005, 'Blood/Candy' required weeks of editing in studios around the world. At the recent record release show in Brooklyn, N.Y., Stringfellow joked that the album wouldn't have been possible without the website YouSendIt.com, which allowed the musicians to swap partially finished files.
"As the sessions for this record progressed, we started getting a little worried, because we severely underestimated the amount of time we would need to do this," Auer says. "We really pulled it off by the hair of our chinny-chin-chins."
If Stringfellow spurred the Posies to make such an ambitious disc, Auer crafted arguably the most problematic tune.
"I can remember bringing in 'Accidental Architecture' without a demo and just watching the looks on the faces of Ken and [bassist] Matt [Harris] as I tried to explain section by section, and one crestfallen look after crestfallen look," Auer says, describing a song that seems to change genre every 20 or 30 seconds. "And we sat there for hours just churning that thing out."
"Instead of making a mountain out of a molehill," Auer adds, summing up the 'Blood/Candy' experience, "we thought we had a molehill, and it was really a mountain."