is the best record of the 1980s. I'm not saying that I'm willing to fight anyone about this but if you come at me with Daydream Nation
or Surfer Rosa
, I will debate you for hours about why you're wrong. And my pick for #2 is The Queen Is Dead
, so, of course, if a band is channeling both The Cure & The Smiths, I'm going to pay attention.
We had the chance to chat with Canadian alt-rockers Yukon Blonde
about their single "Como" off their new LP On Blonde
which comes out tomorrow. Fusing the jangly guitar pop of The Smiths with the sonic uplift & texture of Disintegration
-era The Cure, "Como" is a startling achievement in guitar driven alternative pop. Check out our conversation with the band and the track itself and be sure to look for the band's upcoming US tour dates below the chat.
"Como" is both a city and, more famously, a lake in the Italian Alps. It's also the Spanish word for "How" and "Well." Was the Italian or Spanish significance of the word an inspiration for the song or did it come from somewhere totally different?
Yukon Blonde: Jeff, our singer has been off and on for the last year learning Spanish through an online language site. When he was demoing song ideas for the new record, they would all show up in our dropbox with working titles in Spanish. "Como," originally was going to be called "Come Home;" we just found ourselves using the working title in the studio, so the name stuck. As for Jeff's spanish skills, I'd say he's a 6 outta 10.
Were you influenced by The Smiths as songwriters? I can't help but hear hints of Johnny Marr in the song's guitar work.
The Smiths and The Cure were definitely in mind when putting together "Como" and "Saturday Night". "Como" in particular began as a garage rock song, with washed out, heavier guitars sounding more like a song from The Drums
. We demoed it 3 different times before going into the studio, but it still didn't sound right to us. James, our bassist completely changed the feel of the overall song once we were actually in the studio by creating a new bass line that moved it in the direction of "Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others" (The Smiths). We also loved how The Cure use a significant melody riff to start their songs, so we made a deliberate decision to use a substantial repetition of our guitar/synth hook before the main verse even enters.
What are you hoping fans will take away from your next LP, On Blonde, when it comes out next month?
I just hope fans and new listeners can enjoy the record as a full, cohesive album. We spent a lot of time with sequencing the songs, placing deep cuts such as "Hannah" and "Starvation" in specific spots that allows the listener to be fully immersed. For us, it's our most mature/serious record to date, and I feel listeners will pick up on that.
7/14: San Francisco, CA @ The Rickshaw Stop
7/16: Los Angeles, CA @ The Satelite
7/17: San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
7/18: Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
7/21: San Antonio, TX @ 502 Bar
7/22: Houston, TX @ House of Blues - Bronze Peacock
7/23: Austin, TX @ Stubbs
7/27: Denver, CO @ Larimer Lounge
7/28: Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
7/29: Boise, ID @ Neurolux
8/1: Portland, OR @ Doug Fir Lounge
8/2: Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile