When Au Revoir Simone released their fourth album, Move In Spectrums, the Brooklyn-based three-piece pop band—named for a Pee-Wee Herman catch phrase—re-emerged with a strong new sound, complete with all of the pop charm that’s made the band a hit with fans (and landed their songs on TV shows like The L Word and Grey’s Anatomy). DuJour spoke to singer and keyboardist Annie Hart about spending 10 years in a rock band, life as a touring mom and Au Revoir Simone’s unexpected connection to the Go-Go’s.
It’s been four years since your band put out an album. What have you been up to?
We [previously] spent two years touring that last record and working on small commissioned projects. Then I had a baby, Heather [D’Angelo] went to school, and Erika [Forster] released a solo EP, and we were all super busy. Eventually we thought it would be a good idea to start playing music again together.
And the new record just came from there?
It just instantly felt magical, and we had all these ideas right off the bat. It was so fun that we decided we should just do another record. We thought it was going to take two months of writing and then six months recording, but it ended up taking almost two years.
What was the hold up?
We had been a band for about eight years, and we really wanted to try something new, so we tried playing each other’s keyboards and I was playing drums for a lot of it. We were trying everything we could possibly try to make the songs different and exciting for us.
So how did that make this album different from previous ones?
It’s more sophisticated and open. We wanted to do something that was more minimal, and to have the sounds that we’d chosen so carefully be able to shine through and be produced in such a way that really grasped on to the listeners ears.
You’ve been playing in this band for 10 years now. What stands out as the most memorable experience?
I’ve always loved our band from the moment we started, and I always felt this magical feeling, almost hypnosis, when we’re playing together. It’s just such a complete joy, making these songs together and hearing them over and over every time we rehearse them. Over the years I’ve played in other bands and I didn’t realize until I had all these experiences that this magical connection that I felt so strongly from the beginning [of Au Revoir Simone] is actually a very unique feeling.
Something interesting about this record is that it’s being released on Instant Records, a label that previously was home to Blondie and the Go-Go’s. Do you feel any kinship with those groups?
I had no idea of the connection until we had almost signed the contract, and I was so excited because The Go-Go’s were all women and they wrote their own songs. I think that that was really unique at the time, and I feel like when we started, it was very unique to have all women writing our own songs; it wasn’t very common. It’s really nice to be in that company.
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