Pitchfork: How did you end up working with Andy Kim?
KD: I befriended him over the last five years, and he’s like a teenager filled with enthusiasm. I had not been around that kind of attitude in a very long time. So, in Christmas of 2011, I said to him, “Let’s make a record together.” We started to look for some of his old tapes and we were thinking about doing something like that Bill Laswell series where he took old Miles Davis and Bob Marley tapes and remixed them. But Andy couldn’t find the tapes. At the same time, I had been playing him some of the recordings I was doing in my house, and he loved everything. It hit me that we should do some originals together. He had some songs written, and I had some songs written, and it became this wonderful exercise where I’m writing songs for a man who has lived a lot of lives.
One night we were drinking wine together and he had this wonderful quote that I will never forget. I said, “Your Wikipedia says you retired for 20 years,” and he went, “I didn’t retire, I became irrelevant– there is a big difference.” [laughs] He really brought me back to that point where I started writing again. We went over to Ohad’s basement for the month of July and just recorded all these songs. It was such a wonderful atmosphere because Andy had 100% trust in everything that we did. He eliminated my negativity. Obviously, everyone loves someone who appreciates you and puts you on a pedestal, but it became deeper for me. The love I have for that man is honest and true, and he really brought me back to a place that I forgot about. He made me trust my gut again.
And he still wants it. I said to him, “Why do you do this?” And he said, “I still want to make it.” He’s still a fucking dreamer. He wants to come back and show the world that he can sing and write songs. That’s such an amazing thing to be around, especially as my career has hit a point where my heyday was back in 2003, and now I’m trying to figure out where I fit in this 8,000-bands-a-minute world. You need someone who has that fucking youthful way of being like, “Let’s go over there and look at the horizon and scream.”
Pitchfork: What kind of album are you guys making together?
KD: It’s not a sugar-pop record. This is a man who is singing about his mortality, moving on, getting older, and the idea of trying to connect to an audience who’s possibly lost their parents or are dealing with friends going away. Andy’s really hitting something with that. No one’s expecting anything from us, we are the underdog again. I’m the underdog again; people have been there and done that with Social Scene.
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