Tag Archives: Jim Guthrie

Ep. #262: Mare Sheppard, Jim Guthrie, & Shaw-Han Liem

The overlap between independent gaming and independent music is one of the most fascinating cultural intersections I’ve come across in recent years. Both reflect somewhat subversive interests and have garnered large, loyal, fervent, and outspoken followings and are more often than not, spearheaded by some of the most inventive and clever minds of our time. Jim Guthrie and Shaw-Han Liem are each respected musicians who’ve appeared on this show before and they’ve found new fans through their soundtrack and scoring work for games. Mare Sheppard is the co-founder of Metanet Software, an indie game development company, likely best known for creating the popular game N. Here, Sheppard, Liem, and Guthrie and I discuss things like playing as many games as Mare could get her hands on, learning about programming, art and film, making a small company, human versus perfect, small teams and personal places, getting re-acquainted with games via Toronto’s indie game community, little Jim at the arcade and no quarter, really getting gaming culture as an art form, indie gaming versus mainstream gaming, incremental progress, minimalism, maximizing your resources, Shaw-Han’s work on Sound Shapes for PlayStation, working with Sony, no risk and more freedom, working with a major and working with an indie, what does the fan say, entitlement and rudeness, Jim on gaming and music audience differences, passion levels, too cool for school, smart and outspoken gamers, cultural and media shifts, very specific customer feedback, processing online hype and noise, Mare’s hopes for gaming’s future, an eerie conversation about guns recorded before the Orlando tragedy, Jim’s desire for gamers and devs and musicians to create larger and more interactive project teams, Shaw-Han’s interest in the sophisticated emerging gaming technology, generational shifts, N++ and experimentation, Shaw-Han’s interest in how a dev or gaming mentality might inform his work as a musician and inventor, instructive work as a creator, cashing in, Jim will be streaming a lot of online content, the games Below and XO, Jam Pants, fans are terrible, the song “I Don’t Wanna be a Rock Star,” and then it was Game Over.

Related links: metanetsoftware.com jimguthrie.org robotandproud.com vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #156: Owen Pallett

Owen Pallett is a tremendously gifted multi-instrumentalist, composer, and singer who currently lives in Montreal. Pallett was initially acclaimed for his string arrangements for artists like Jim Guthrie, Arcade Fire, Fucked Up, and many others and, particularly when he lived there, he was viewed as a true leader and champion of Toronto’s underground arts community. Since releasing his own music, Pallett’s profile has risen considerably. He won the inaugural Polaris Music Prize and has been nominated for each of his subsequent solo records; he was nominated for an Academy Award for his work scoring the film Her; and his fourth and latest album, In Conflict, has appeared on many best of 2014 critics’ lists. He is a sharp, clever, outspoken young man and he’s playing the Hillside Inside festival on Saturday Feb. 7 at 3 PM with Jennifer Castle. Here, Owen and I discuss living in Montreal, the year that was, musicians managing this particular age of media consumption, seeing the content of private Facebook posts go viral, playing with Arcade Fire during the backlash about their latest record, maybe people don’t like aging rock and pop bands, provocative extracurricular activities don’t necessarily lead to bigger box office sales, turning down a CBC Radio hosting gig, having sex with men, Pitchfork, Slim Twig is a wise person, Win knows best, some people should quit, why we make things, the trajectory of creative lives, people keep talking to me about Blink 182, why Michael Gira might have reformed Swans or Kathleen Edwards might have opened up a coffee shop, playing Hillside during a torrential rain storm that shortened the set, befriending Buffy Sainte-Marie, fortunate Owen, the plan to make a new, dense acoustic record that sounds electronic, Jennifer Castle’s “Sparta,” and that was it.   

Related links: owenpalletteternal.com hillsidefestival.ca vishkhanna.com

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Ep. #111: Hamilton Leithauser

Hamilton Leithauser is a very talented singer and songwriter who is best known for fronting the acclaimed New York City band, the Walkmen. Last year, the Walkmen announced they’d be taking an extended hiatus after releasing a string of wonderful albums. Before long, members of the band began releasing solo material, including Leithauser. His new album is the startling and wondrous Black Hours, a timeless star-studded pop affair that was released on June 3 via Ribbon Music, and has prompted him to tour including a stop at Hamilton, Ontario’s Supercrawl this September. Here, Hamilton and I discuss NPR’s Tiny Desk concert series, that time I saw the Walkmen play one of their last shows together in Halifax this past October, knocking a tooth out on a microphone, when work on Black Hours first began, why he made a record under his own name, who helped make this album a star-studded affair, the relationship between the conception of this solo record and the end of the Walkmen and why the band is taking a break, Frank Sinatra records, songwriting reversal, a nightclub, night time tone within the phrase “black hours,” Danzig, Self-Pity, growing up in Washington D.C. and seeing Minor Threat, Nation of Ulysses, Fugazi, and other Dischord Records bands, playing punk, working as a studio assistant at Inner Ear studios while Fugazi was recording Red Medicine, not making it into Instrument, being young and apolitical, loving the Make-Up and Ian Svenonius, the Cramps and the Modern Lovers, lead singers versus bands, Chain and the Gang, being in a band or being on your own, not sounding like the Walkmen, the new record’s weird storyline, the bizarre circumstance of the Walkmen’s “extreme hiatus,” trying new things but the Walkmen will likely be back, it’s fun to play, there are already new songs written but there was some writer’s block, working well with others, playing “Mr November” with the National, Hamilton playing Hamilton, Ontario, the song “The Silent Orchestra,” and then Hamilton out.

Related links: hamiltonleithauser.com vishkhanna.com

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