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Return to the Planet of the Apes
Following up one of the biggest dance choons of 2008 couldn’t have been an easy task for cosmically-minded production duo SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO. Maestro primate number one Jas Shaw puts it down to a little bit of crafty collaborating and a lot of vintage *nsync records.
Celina Murphy, 17 Nov 2009
“Being in a band is very good training for having a child,” laughs Simian Mobile Disco’s Jas Shaw. “It’s things like no sleep isn’t it? It’s not the going out and staying out late that you miss, it’s the sleeping ‘til two or four in the afternoon!”
Simian Mobile Disco have just put out their second album, Temporary Pleasure, their first full-length release since ‘We Are Your Friends’, their sizzling hook-up with French house-niks Justice, lit up the charts. In tandem with that, Arctic Monkeys’ Humbug, produced by Simian Mobile Disco’s James Ford, has gone straight to number one in the UK and Ireland. Considering the two bands are close friends, is there any whiff of sour grapes in the air?
“Not at all,” Shaw says. “To be honest, I don’t really know why there would be. I always think that the whole idea of bands fighting these days is a farce. If someone’s going to buy one record, they’ll probably buy both of them and if someone’s going to download one record for free, they’ll probably download both. I don’t think it works in the same way as it used to where people had like £4 and could only buy one record.”
With vocal cameos by Jamie Lidell, Gossip’s Beth Ditto and Hot Chip’s Alexis Taylor, Temporary Pleasure boasts a sparkling guest-list. I mention that my personal favourite collaboration comes courtesy of Yeasayer’s Chris Keating, who croons over the glittering single ‘Audacity Of Huge’.
“The lyrics to that song are amazing!” Shaw beams. “The whole conversation that we had with him about that track was so unexpected because obviously the Yeasayer record is quite leftfield... When he sent back the vocals we were like, ‘Whoah, they’re really, really pop in a slightly disgusting kind of way!’ He said he was going for this *nsync kind of vibe and immediately we were both downloading loads of *nsync!”