The members of Delta Spirit may have lost their "delta" with the release of their self-titled third album, on which they forgo their go-to helping of folk and reach across the table for some pop and rock with all the synthy fixins, courtesy of it-producer Chris Coady. Truth is, they've changed their plan a little late in the game, and just may have shot themselves in the foot on their race to bigger and better venues. Their "spirit," however, is alive and well thank-you-very-much, according to Jon Jameson, the group's bassist and go-to soul searcher, who phoned in from Philly as Delta Spirit treks across North America.
Jameson gave us the low-down on why he avoids listening to their first-born album, Ode to Sunshine, how it feels being the "weird guy" in the band who's always running off to Sunday mass, and why the band members' wives harbor no jealousy over their so-called rock-star lives. P.S. If you're a hot young thing reading this article, Mr. Jameson has a very important message for you at the end of this interview. Go on and scroll down, if you must. But come back up, you hear?
Delta Spirit. With Waters. Saturday, April 7th. $13. 8p.m. Masquerade. 404-577-8178. www.masq.com. Delta Spirit dropped on March 13th.
In 2008 before the release of your first album you were quoted as saying "I want to get cut down. I want people to tell us we're super overrated." So of all times to get cut down, this is possibly one of the key times in the band's career that that will happen because this new album is definitely a new beginning, maybe even a whole new book, for you all, as it's taken flight from folk and erred more to the side of pop rock. Most critics are finding it to be a mixed bag but are ultimately going to bat for this album, and a lot of fans are cutting you down, just as you wanted. How do those mixed reactions sit with you?
Jon Jameson: I guess if I felt conflicted about the album I would maybe put more stock in hoping that people like it, but all of us are thrilled and invested with the album. Obviously we're happy when people get it, and disappointed when they don't but at the same time I'm completely confidant and I think that anyone who's interested in our band will get it. It's a risk in some ways. We definitely maybe could've played it safe and tried to make the songs cater more to the people who liked our first album but I don't think that was even a possibility with us. We're a band who's interested in growth. I love the first album we made, but if we put that out again, I wouldn't listen to it. It's no longer interesting to me the way it was in its' time. Being a musician, you have to find out what interests you about music. At the same point, there are a few people who aren't interested anymore but I think that's really a very small number of our fans.
When you say "get it," what do you mean?
It's been a natural progression getting here. I think we're more open with trying things that in the past we didn't feel comfortable with.
With you guys growing to be more comfortable and confidant with experimenting, what did you guys do differently?
For one we spent a lot of time really working on the songs until all five of us loved them. We just spent months playing song idea after song idea until we had eleven songs that we loved. Since all five of us are so different, it was about finding the common ground where we all loved what we were doing. But this summer we brought our producer Chris Coady in and gave him more control than we've ever given anyone else. What we had him do mostly was sonics and he's also the synth hero, which is all new to us.
How are all five of you so different? Is it both musically and personality wise?
I'd say both. We all have pretty strong personalities, pretty strong characters. You know, like, Brandon is listening to new DJ's, I'm listening to Cocteau Twins and New Order, and Matt's listening to Nirvana [laughs]. Everyone's all over the place. What makes our band special is that we all find a way to respect each other.
Why did you guys decide to self title this album?
The second album felt a little bit rushed in production. We didn't spend as much time putting it together because we had been touring for the first one. We wanted to really kind of re-sort out how we felt about things. It felt like a re-birth, a starting again. So all that mixed in with not having a themed album, it kind of just came from the fact that we were making the album that we're most proud of.
come on man you know you got a bromance. you probably still rock that OutKast…
Yes, 14 is the correct answer. I'll pass your info along to the group's manager,…
That was January of 2007, and they are 21 now, so I'm guessing 14?
WWW you trying to date big boi? Sounds like you got a lil bromance bruh