Artist: Gang of Four Video: 'You'll Never Pay for the Farm' Highlight: The…
- Posted on Nov 3rd 2010 2:00PM by Eric R. Danton
"We convened Gang of Four again at the end of 2004, beginning of 2005, and as soon as we started rehearsing together, it seemed rather fun," guitarist Andy Gill tells Spinner. "The songs seemed very fresh and vital."
Gill takes responsibility for the delay, noting that he's kept busy with various other projects as a producer.
"The process was a little bit long-winded," he says. "I was then producing and mixing lots of different bands, and we'd spend a month kind of working on material, recording stuff and then I'd go off and record some other band for a few months. In 2009, I said, 'Look, this is never going to get done unless I put aside the time to do it,' which is what I did."
Gill and singer Jon King, the other remaining founding member of the group, worked together on material, with Gill bringing musical ideas to King, who would pick the ones he liked and add vocals.
"I'd play Jon maybe 30 percent of the ideas I'd generated, and out of that, we'd pick one or two and he'd start singing on stuff," Gill says. "I usually find that almost anything gets somewhere."
The way they work together isn't very different from the early days of the band, though changes in recording techniques and gear mean the musicians can work independently more than they did when Gang of Four released their 1979 debut, 'Entertainment!'
"When we did 'Entertainment!' and [1981's] 'Solid Gold,' we were basically in a rehearsal room, going, 'Let's do it like this, let's do it like that,'" Gill says. "A lot of the early songs, I would basically come up with a lot of the bass parts and the drum parts, just as I do now. The difference is, when we first started, we didn't have any sort of recording device, and then eventually we got a cassette recorder to record ideas as we'd go along."
There's also the fact that 30 years and dozens of production credits later -- including records by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Jesus Lizard and the Futureheads -- Gill knows what he's doing in a studio.
"The basic difference is I'm an experienced recording engineer these days, and I wasn't then," he says. "With computers these days, it's very, very easy for people to make a pretty good recording."
'Content' is due Jan. 25 on Yep Roc.