State Theatre & 98.9 WCLZ present

Interpol + Spoon

Lights, Camera, Factions Tour

with The Goon Sax

Sat, August 27, 2022

Thompsons Point

Doors: 5:00pm - Show: 6:00pm - all ages

$49.50 advance
$55 day of show
Kids 3 and under free

The Thompson’s Point Box Office opens at 3pm day of show. On-site parking is limited, buy in advance above. Free Valet Bike Parking will also be available. All Thompson’s Point shows are rain or shine.

Effective April 1, the State Theatre will no longer require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test for patrons attending Thompsopn’s Point performances & events unless required by Artist, in which case we will post the requirement on the individual event page. Masks are optional unless required by Artist. It is important to check each event’s individual event page for updated COVID entry protocols before coming to the venue.

CLICK HERE for our full Health & Safety policy.

share this event

Interpol

Interpol began in New York in 1997, when guitarist Daniel Kessler recruited bassist Carlos Dengler and singer/guitarist Paul Banks to form a band. In 2002, with Sam Fogarino on drums, the band signed to Matador records and released Turn On The Bright Lights, which made it to 10th position on NME’s list of 2002’s top releases and Pitchfork named it the year’s #1 album.

Over the next decade and a half Interpol would go on to wide critical and commercial acclaim, with five subsequent high charting records on the Billboard 200; earning rave reviews across the map from Rolling Stone to TIME; performing on late night television shows including the Late Late show with David Letterman and Conan and playing major festivals like Coachella and Glastonbury and headlining Mexico’s Corona Capital.

The band (Banks, Kessler and Fogarino) have just finished recording their latest studio album with legendary production duo Flood & Moulder, due for release through Matador Records, worldwide, in 2022.

Spoon

Spoon’s tenth album, Lucifer on the Sofa, is the band’s purest rock ’n roll record to date. Texas-made, it is the first set of songs that the quintet has put to tape in its hometown of Austin in more than a decade. Written and recorded over the last two years – both in and out of lockdown – these songs mark a shift toward something louder, wilder, and more full-color.

From the detuned guitars anchoring “The Hardest Cut,” to the urgency of “Wild,” to the band’s blown-out cover of the Smog classic “Held,” Lucifer on the Sofa bottles the physical thrill of a band tearing up a packed room. It’s an album of intensity and intimacy, where the music’s harshest edges feel as vivid as the directions quietly murmured into the mic on the first-take. According to frontman Britt Daniel, “It’s the sound of classic rock as written by a guy who never did get Eric Clapton.”

While Spoon’s last album, Hot Thoughts (2017), bristled with drum machines, synths, and astral moods, the nonstop touring that followed in its wake tugged the band back toward a stripped-down sound. “I liked where we’d gone on Hot Thoughts – it had a specific style and it covered new ground for us – but we kept noticing on the road that the live versions of the songs were beating the album versions,” says Daniel. “And it got us thinking: The best rock music is not about dialing in the right patches and triggering samples. It’s about what happens in a room.”

It took some relocating. In fall of 2019, Daniel moved back to Austin from Los Angeles. A month later, guitarist/keyboardist Alex Fischel followed him with a car full of gear. The move to Texas added up for a lot of reasons: Daniel was born and grew up there, and his family never left. Drummer Jim Eno has his Public Hi-Fi studio in Austin, which allowed the band the luxury of recording at whatever pace they liked. Above all, regrouping in Austin would help the band break with the sound and the feeling of the last few Spoon albums.

That return felt like less of a homecoming than a jolt to the system. Here was an opportunity to write amidst the creative lawlessness that inspired Daniel to make music in the first place — a city where everything from outlaw country to psychedelic punk have long co-mingled at honky-tonks, house shows and backyard barbecues.

“We wanted to make a record where we could experience and draw from a scene,” says Daniel. “Where Alex and I could write all day, then go out and see Dale Watson at the Continental, then come back home and write some more.”

That scene would yield everything from the scorch and bite of “The Hardest Cut,” the first song written by Daniel and Fischel after returning to Texas, (“I spent a lot of 2018 and 2019 listening to ZZ Top,” Daniel explains), to the gentle dizziness of “Astral Jacket,” a ballad tracked after a night out at the now-shuttered Austin nightspot, Stay Gold. Bathed in atmosphere, it’s the sound of coming down – meandering Wurlitzer, brushed drums, and the thump of a timpani suspended in predawn stillness.

Working alongside producer/engineer Mark Rankin (Adele, Queens of the Stone Age) – and with contributions from Dave Fridmann and Justin Raisen – the band’s strategy was straightforward. “I’d come in with a couple new songs and instead of piecing it together like we did the last one, we said ‘Let’s rehearse it’,” Daniel says. “Let’s play it in this room over and over til it becomes something. And let’s just do it with as few instruments as we can.”

Halfway through the recording process, the pandemic hit. The studio shut down, but Daniel continued writing. “There are songs I wrote last spring [of 2020] that I wouldn’t have come up with otherwise,” he says. “It was that first-of-its-kind moment.”

The album’s title track snapshots a late night walk through downtown Austin during shutdown, steeped in the eerie dissonance of isolation and intimacy. Daniel explains: “I didn’t know where that image came from but it felt right, this idea of Satan sitting with me on my couch, staring at me. But after the song was written I figured out that the Lucifer on the sofa is the worst you can become – the bitterness, or lack of motivation or desperation that keeps you down and makes you do nothing or self-indulge. So it’s a song about the battle between yourself and that character you can become, the conflict being played out through a long night walk through downtown Austin.”

It’s also the song where the colors change, the lights turn down and the rules of the record go out the window, the way last songs on a record sometimes do. “It was always gonna be the last song. It wouldn’t have fit anywhere else,” says Daniel.

When the band reconvened in October, Daniel had a new batch of songs, and a fresh sense of momentum. “It’s certainly something we didn’t take for granted, that feeling of being in a room with each other,” Daniel says. “That moment was a once in a lifetime kind of feeling.”

Lucifer on the Sofa is the sound of that moment, a record of defiant optimism, the sound of a band cracking things open and letting them spill out onstage. At a time fraught with uncertainty, it’s shutting the door on the devil you know and never looking back.

The Goon Sax

Since forming in high school, Brisbane band The Goon Sax—the trio of Riley Jones, Louis Forster, and James Harrison, best friends who take turns writing, singing, and playing each instrument—have been celebrated for their unpretentious, kinetic homemade pop. Mirror ll, The Goon Sax’s third album and first for Matador, is something else entirely: a new beginning, a multi-dimensional eclectic journey of musical craftsmanship that moves from disco to folk to no wave skronk with staggering cohesion. Gone are the first-person insecurities of their school days—they’ve been made expansive, more universal, more weird.

On their debut album, 2016’s Up to Anything, it was their candid affection and scrappy instrumentation that drew praise; 2018’s We’re Not Talking was exalted for the same—their massive choruses, a sharpening of their craft, then with an addition of horns, strings, piano, and castanets to their guitar/bass/drums.

Mirror ll is the result of three years of writing, and some considerable time spent apart: Louis relocated to Berlin and worked at a cinema (he sings in German on the track “Bathwater”), Riley and James formed an angular post-punk band called Soot. All three experimented with abstract, atonal sounds before recapturing the essence of The Goon Sax: “pop melody,” Louis explains. “The first two albums are inherently linked. They had three-word titles; they went together. This one definitely felt like going back to square one and starting again, and that was really freeing.”

“We lived a share house together, this tiny little Queenslander we called ‘Fantasy Planet,’ where we wrote the album,” Riley explains. “We were able to go to each other’s rooms and say anything that came to mind and go to the practice room three times a week. It was pretty intense.”

Mirror II is intense, the sum of everything that has always made The Goon Sax great: robust sprechgesang, raw lyrical candor, ascending guitar pop structures that would make the most storied jangle bands blush, elevated into their newfound narrative verisimilitude and expanded sonic experimentations. Each member’s idiosyncratic style comes across on record: Riley’s bubblegum noise is more present than ever before (“Desire,” “Tag”) reflecting her heavy Les Rallizes Dénudés and Keiji Haino influence, and some Kylie Minogue-inspired “sparkle sound,” as she calls it, for good measure. Louis’ moody, supernatural avant-pop (“Psychic,” “In the Stone,”) stems from an admiration for HTRK, Young Marble Giants, Stereolab, The Motels’ “Total Control,” Justin Beiber’s “Sorry,” The 1975’s “Tootimetootimetootime,” Chris Kraus’s I Love Dick and Diane Di Prima’s Memoirs of a Beatnik in equal measure—and remains distinctly his own—comparisons to his father, The Go-Betweens’ Robert Forster, be damned. James’ psychedelic folk (“Carpetry,” “Caterpillars”) is no doubt studied from The Walker Brothers, Jandek, Felt, and Pink Floyd’s Syd Barrett. “I got into Syd Barrett’s lyrics because they were hazy, relatable and honest but up in the air. That’s how I felt,” he says of his whimsical songs. “I was experiencing romantic love for the first time, it felt out of my control, and there’s something about Syd Barrett’s lyrics… it doesn’t just come from inside us; it is the moments that are happening to us as well.”

Those uninhibited combinations wouldn’t work for most bands, but then again, The Goon Sax aren’t most bands: their deep trust in one another is the very spirit of Mirror ll. “I was reading The Philosophy of Andy Warhol the other day. He said something so perfect… ‘I’m sure I’m going to look in the mirror and see nothing. People are always calling me a mirror, and if a mirror looks into a mirror, what is there to see?’” Riley recites. “The name [Mirror II] was totally arbitrary to begin with, but it became about reflecting on reflection: we all get so influenced by each other. You find other people who show you yourself, who you are.”

Once the percipient concept began to take shape, so too did the band’s song selection. “We tried not to have a main sound that ran down the middle of the record,” Louis explains, “What united the record, more so than a single sound, were themes and ideas and space. That’s what Mirror ll is. It didn’t sound like anything, but it was a feeling.”

And that feeling is unbounded, all their influences filtered through their unimpeachable songwriting abilities and a perceptiveness that borders on clairvoyancy. “We’ve come to accept that there’s no right and wrong in our songs, no good person and bad person. They’re only flawed people,” Louis says. “That was really important for us to express this time around. The narrator changes, the viewpoint isn’t definitive, it’s sentences existing in the air, as if someone overheard it on the street. [Thematically,] it’s a progression on the first two albums: there’s something in this record about losing yourself in someone, losing yourself in a city, and being unable to tell what is you and what is somebody else.” Riley adds, “It felt like the songs weren’t only personal, they were something interpersonal, they just existed on their own, aside from ourselves.”

The band traveled to Bristol to record the album at Invada Studios, owned by Geoff Barrow of Portishead and Beak, with producer John Parish (Aldous Harding, PJ Harvey.) “We had a bit more knowledge of what it took to put together a whole, cohesive album,” James says. “On the first one, we took a purposefully minimalist approach. And the second was less in our hands production-wise, at times. This one was much more of a collaborative effort between us and John.” Parish agrees. “The different styles and characteristics of Louis, Riley, and James complement each other so well, and result in a sound that is uniquely their own. The lyrics are full of dry wit and surreal imagery, petulant, and oddly romantic. Great band.”

Ambitious, too. Lofty as well, but never maudlin. The Goon Sax made a record with an ingenuity all their own. “I hope Mirror ll makes people find some beauty and presence in whatever they are going through, to transcend their feelings while acknowledging them,” says Louis. “These are emotions, dressed up a bit,” Riley adds to the thought. “We talk about mystical conceptions, how they’re super engrained in reality, nothing too farfetched. It’s a genuine dreaminess, and I hope the album brings out those feelings on a really mundane day.” It most certainly does.