Will Butler is an American musician whom many people assume is Canadian because he’s a member of the Montreal band Arcade Fire. On his first solo album, the multi-instrumentalist delves deep into American songwriting traditions, crafting these rousing pop and rock blasts that are incisive and more revealing with each listen. They are joyous and angry and inspire listeners to question what they’re hearing, both on this record and anywhere else. The new album is called Policy, it’s out now via Merge Records, and Butler and his band have been hitting the road hard, including stops at the Horseshoe Tavern on March 27, and two nights at Montreal’s Bar le Ritz PDB on March 28 and 29. Here, Will and I discuss the ocean near Biloxi, Mississippi, how long these songs have existed, whether any of them might have made it onto an Arcade Fire record, bouncing these song ideas off of other people, the American tone of Policy, political music, John Lennon and Plastic Ono Band and the Breeders, his plans, Arcade Fire plans, and then we finish what we started.
Related links: butlerwills.com vishkhanna.com