Episode 136: Jon Hopkins

“Luminous Beings”

A post shared by Song Exploder (@songexploder) on


Jon Hopkins is an electronic music producer whose been nominated twice for the UK’s Mercury Prize. Along with his frequent collaborator, Brian Eno, he co-produced Coldplay‘s Grammy-award winning album, Viva la Vida. In May 2018, Jon Hopkins released his fifth album, Singularity. It was named Best New Music by Pitchfork. In this episode, Jon Hopkins takes apart the song “Luminous Beings,” which was inspired in part by the meditative and therapeutic effects of psilocybin, the psychedelic compound found in magic mushrooms. Jon talks about his own experience with drug, and how it shaped this song. He also details the less magical moments where he hated the music was he making, and had to destroy it as part of the creative process.

Buy or stream “Luminous Beings” here. And click here to try Ableton Live 10 for free.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Korg Trinity synth
Ableton Live
Echo Boy plugin
Korg MS-20 synth
Joshua Tree National Park
Altiverb plugin
Una Chorda plugin

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someone
· · ·

Episode 135: Liz Phair

“Divorce Song”

A post shared by Song Exploder (@songexploder) on


In 1993, Liz Phair released her debut album, Exile in Guyville. It was an instant hit, critically and commercially. It sold hundreds of thousands of copies. Spin and The Village Voice named it album of the year. Soon after, Rolling Stone put her on the cover of their magazine. Now, twenty-five years later, Exile in Guyville is being reissued as a deluxe boxset with photos, essays, and Liz Phair’s original four-track cassette recordings. In this episode, Liz and Exile in Guyville‘s producer, Brad Wood, look back to tell the story of the creation of one of the songs on the album, “Divorce Song.”

Buy or stream “Divorce Song” here. And click here to buy Girly-Sound to Guyville: The 25th Anniversary Boxset.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Oberlin College
Girly-Sound
Exile on Main Street – The Rolling Stones
“Rocks Off” – The Rolling Stones
“Ventilator Blues” – The Rolling Stones
“Honky Tonk Women” – The Rolling Stones
Peavey Backstage amplifier

The Oral History of “Exile in Guyville” by Jessica Hopper – from SPIN, 2013

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someone
· · ·

Episode 134: Arcade Fire

“Put Your Money On Me”

A post shared by Song Exploder (@songexploder) on


Arcade Fire is a Grammy­-winning six­-piece band originally from Montreal. They’ve released five albums, and the last three have all debuted at number one on the charts. In this episode, frontman Win Butler takes apart “Put Your Money On Me,” from their 2017 album Everything Now. He breaks down how the influence of Marvin GayeHarry Nilsson, and ABBA all helped shape how the song eventually turned out. You’ll hear the orignal demo, and an alternate version of the song that was never finished. The story begins when Win and his wife and bandmate Régine Chassange moved to New Orleans.

Buy or stream “Put Your Money on Me” here.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Roland TR-808 drum machine
“Sexual Healing” – Marvin Gaye
Thomas Bangalter (of Daft Punk)
“Around the World” – Daft Punk
“Everybody’s Talkin'” – Harry Nilsson
Will Butler’s Song Exploder episode
Daniel Lanois

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookEmail this to someone
· · ·