« Song Exploder

Perfume Genius - Slip Away

2017-05-11 | 🔗

Mike Hadreas has been making music under the name Perfume Genius since 2008. In May 2017, he put out his fourth album, No Shape to widespread critical acclaim. In this episode, Mike breaks down the song Slip Away. I also spoke with producer Blake Mills, who also plays on the track, and recording engineer Shawn Everett about the unusual way the song was recorded.

For more, visit songexploder.net/perfume-genius

This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Listening to some exploiter, where musicians take apart their songs and piece by piece tell the story of how they were made. My name is Rishikesh. Your way if so, does sponsored by micron micron, mobile memory and storage products deliver a solid data foundation for feeling the next generation of five g- and I enabled smartphone experiences with every new generation smartphones can, more new and innovative things Previous generation couldn't the heart of innovation, is icon, mobile memory and storage micron. It's where data lives. This episode sponsored by the new starbucks via energy, drink, I want you to know that with caffeine naturally found in coffee fruit, its energy, that's good, it comes in three flights. Mango, guava, raspberry lime and pineapple passion, fruit. Twelve out. Ninety calorie can contains a hundred sixty milligrams of caffeine certainties little boost, whether you're trying to work through a creative problem or danced your favorites on
Starbucks by energy. Drink is available online, a grocery stores, convenience stores and gas, stay its nationwide. This episode can and explicit language. MIKE Hadrian's has been making music under the name, perfume genius, since two thousand aim in may, two thousand seventeen he put out his fourth out no shape to widespread critical acclaim in this episode, MIKE breaks down the song slip away, ass, a spy with producer blake males, who also plays on the track, and recording, engineer sean ever it about the unusual way the sun was recorded this perfume genius on song exploded athletes and carry about its make from perfume genius. Before I wrote slip away. I was writing very different songs for about a month as running really dark wordless.
Chanting overrun drones and they were very kind form less and creepy the last was more of an electronic like exorcism singing in tongues. At least that was the subway enjoyed performing the most. So I thought when alleges to that for forty five minutes. and then suddenly. One day I made this on, there was the keyboard. First, I had em a keeper, some kind of like
Jam right and have worked yet has just a moaning, but it was much pop here have like a chorus and that felt more. the direction ass to go, and it was felt way, infinitely more exciting and even strangely, more uncomfortable and challenging than other concrete you're supposed to make. It wasn't purely intuitive. I like thought about the court
so it card to go to next. I thought about having a bridge and, of course, and I used to think those cancel out the spirit if I worked too hard. I always thought the emotion would be lost, but that kind of changed army with writing this album and I felt like a enhanced the soul of It- are the work Putting into mapping the actual structure arrangement out it's funny, because the demos called band mp3. because I am I know now. I wrote this imagining the sort of lake stadium anthem, a new eventually when it wants to be prepared exactly like that and to have you know the instruments be a little more subversive than just a straight up rock cut, the song to sound american- and I want
the language to be mine, but be weirdly universal, unlike classic american pop song way, a kind of one of that sort of springsteen spirit. To like a lot of like a rock dude that just like here's, my big fat, album, it's amazing and then gas is we left? They don't need it explain, nobody's asking them questions about like their home life or anything there. Just like you're, a genius. We love it, there's specific kind of confidence to it in sway here too it that I feel is far from being so. It felt kind of thrilling to steal some of it by producer, I sent him all my demos and he sent me back pages of notes that were really thought fallen. Exciting I could just tell before we even broken that he understood the spirit of that. My name is blake mills and I produced and performed on the perfume genius record
the demo for slip away it to me. It sounded like you know in writing this song from a place of guitar based music like bruce Springsteen, but even though the pattern felt like a guitar figure, it had a disjointed quality a kind of lopsided next to it whims when is played on on keys and everything's. All down strokes like that it doesn't sound as smooth as guitar, but I like the idea, if it not just reading, I got rock n roll song and so we are trying to find an instrument to play on that was sort of identifiable that was removed from the family of guitars. That's a level. the reason why we worked in studio. We did, as I was just filled with instruments, had never seen before or heard from all over the place, and so it felt like a magical is like em fantasy movie. When you go to like an old book store and pick up an old book you'd like actually go into a different world when you open it is that kind of field being
and in that room. Tracking in never been used on an record before it was a sin Collecting dust turned out to be this weird guitar shaped bearer, Molly. It's like a sea piece of metal times and view strike them in the sense of this particular one hand pick up in it, so you could plug it into an app the bureau plugged into rolling jazz chorus, the to speak. In the end, there modulating the signal back and forth both employment and pitch. We might be camp in stereos, so that we could then send one of those speakers all the way to the left side when others, because only to the right searches widens dead, underwater chorus effect, the verse a series of algorithms and it goes to guitar that is tuned down and I'm,
tapping, the string, some hitting it lee instead of strumming it just sort of this progressive way of playing guitar with your fingers, That's a very like blake mills say that your thing, I don't know how you fucking shit, that there's a technique to it to get it to not have a defined a tack needed to just be this kind of his little clouds of notes that happen and kind of like a slow, strobe effect, I think, he's the only one that can play in that way. You know this song could easily have gone forlorn band rock and roll and I wanted all of it to be prepared in a more subversive way. I think, We wanted to stick a little knife and every little thing services. Is a little bit off. I think that that communicates
spirit a lot more. I think something is too beautiful or too kind and gentle her sweet. It becomes background music and I feel like if there's a little bit of dissidents. It makes everything more, lasting and even enhances the joy it was so. foreign press, to create a world. What that does too empower mike and the things that he writes about and his interpretations of this world and his experiences in swirled trying to remove the sense familiarity every so often I just feel like helps to keep seeming kind of magical. This song, it sort of joyous in free in a way that I had never written before and it Almost confusing efforts and came out very easily, I can tell those good or not. It was very for it.
Can I do this? Is this me is good. Our people gonna want I'll, listen to it Think that's part of the reason why I felt scary to share and felt more m uncomfortable than all the darker things is because it was truly how I was feeling in the moon, pretty baby. It's about love and like physical, oven, spiritual. Love in the face of other people telling what's wrong or not natural or not all right or You know, even in defiance in rebellion against yourself thinking, you're, not capable that are worthy of it and just a lot, being so powerful and in real and true that it can't be shaken,
broken by by any of those things. I had been getting shit for being gay before before. kiss anyone. I had been told repeatedly that There's something wrong with me in that new. I want to kiss that makes me bad. Those people telling you this day eventually translate into you. You keep it with you, mister bring it to yourself. I didn't work ashamed of myself in tow. So tell me I should be, but that's why I felt like ghosts. for me to write the song and write more songs with that essence to it you know maybe not fully. There haven't shaken all of it. that's what I need instead of firm other things. There is writing before. As the last one was very angry and was very much singing at those people out. Whatever my oppressors are, you know is directed at them, And these sons are more for me and for my family,
my friends in the people that are already listening. I dont really care about convincing anyone else anymore or Changing their minds, I just feel more. Just the right now and existing on my own and with it We went out and a happier way released here too. It should definitely love song about this, I've heard of eight years, so yeah for sure it's all of them. It's one I wish I were heard when I was young. You know, because that kind of I write brown then wait for me right for me when I was twelve I write for other twelve ruled that need you know. I mean it. my song, but I try to carry a bunch of when people with me when I raining Alan is mike's boyfriend, an collaborator and piano player in life, banned there like an old married couple,
Your alan's, been around MIKE he's, probably like out of all of us, he's probably makes biggest fan, but he's had such an exposure to mike that he's like he is. With any new any bullshit so like we were all I ask, is amazing and islands like how know about that. If I buy it on this line, you know it's a so he was like the voice of reason a lot of times and, and I think, really pushed to get the best out of MIKE pray inferior, Every man is ireland, a lot of rules and stuff in ways that I treat my voice at home certain eat. use that are used in certain parts of my I said, aren't like so much better. I go in the studio tried a kind of shapes, some of that off those. All sort of bullshit rules, anyways a kind of rely on my boyfriend. For some of that too, to keep me in check, I don't ever want to make stuff or treat my voice. I don't want to be
fraid of aid or try to make it sound like something. It's not. You know I dont want to try to cover up any of the breaks in my voice. every single day. One point me buddy and carry burns my name shall never it, and I recorded and mixed the perfume genius record we recorded most The record on this by normal head norman microphone. It looks if you like, a human head lake, whole torso and head and the microphones were placed in the here's the man again and I believe as like that consistency and weight of a human head and mathematically built represents the way sound moves around a human head. I should have recorded this In our view on the ban on my head right now in front of the head now, I'm to the side of the head. Now I'm whispering behind the head,
am. I sprang into the ear now, I'm whispering into another ear, I just kind of gotten it and then the perfume genius thing started and when I was talking to blake about it you really want to create different worlds and explore a different kind of side territory and just imagine as a special field of like where are you- are in this kind of wild places that make exists. So I was I've only got bring his head. I just got his head and then I brought down and then immediately when we started using. It ended think it is almost every instrument on the record we just use, everywhere. To be honest, the moon was kind of off putting because it made my vocal some increase, but clear and very proud sent in the mix and the headphones. It sounds like I'm singing in the center, sometimes of your head of the lake, the listeners head just so, oh clear, which is took some getting used to, but I I knew it helped communicate the songs more oh yes, sir reverb are sounding a little more distant, are having me
mystery around my voice, so that was a new thing for me to be so present, and I think that the dummy compounded because it's almost like, I was singing directly to someone, but I eventual one in some more coral, a beautiful parts to it- some the more dreamy in official the weather, mike rights to say, they'll never break the shape. We take that such a poetic way to talk
about a relationship is in these two pieces that create one shape, that that is the form and that you protect one another. For the sake of this thing that do both make, that you can't have, without the other, it's actually a thumbtack piano in the regular piano. But if you open it up doctors, their little thumbtack so when they hit the strings, has a harsher more like harpsichord, like some The whole idea of the song is that the universe got so big and so beautiful it kind of when all the we back around to breaking to the point, kind of dissolves in that's. Where something can a distant creeps in, thank think because being able to get that sort of free,
I'm enjoying laughing and then you're like snap back into reality or your version of it. That's not as kind and I think that sounds a lot about kind of stealing those moments when they come up and reacting icing to my sacred, even if they only last for two and a half minutes when I first heard that first big break at the song where everything is turned off two hundred and eleven and everything comes on. It was a really great moment. I, I mean Alan sort of terry I'd. I wrote a lot of love songs about early september, because so many signs of or are about the beginning of love early young love- and I to write some music that the second
a beautiful it in sacred love can be that's been around for longer than maybe doesn't seem as dramatic, but has just as powerful and worthy. Dramatize hitting. Does it so easy, the longer you're? With someone in the more? Mr consists get better to take it off for granted its not aiming nature. To be grateful, unfortunately, I wish it was by my brain- is just too quick that I'm I'm never really. fully caught up with, what's happening, always like twenty minutes ahead of myself, so I Trying to make myself be more in the moment, be more patient kind. about some of the more magical things that are happening, that maybe I don't pay close enough attention to and now
her slip away by perfume genius in its entirety, because it seems to me an caravan sat down and carried it. Take.
visit song exploded dot net for link. To buy this track and to learn more about perfume genius and to watch slip away. Music video. This happened though, to sponsor by nissan the future will be great, but ray is just as incredible meet me. Son the most advanced light up. If can't get enough adrenaline, there's the all new four hundred horse power, nissan sea or fear, offer adventures checks The altering nissan frontier, if you're more the spontaneous road trip type of person happened, the need on pathfinder and for something more electric there's, the stylish nissan aria so let's enjoy the ride. Twenty Twenty three aria and z are not yet available for purchase, expected availability this spring for twenty twenty three c and this fall for the twenty twenty three aria. This episode is sponsored by story worth an online service that helps you connect with the special people in your life through sharing stories and memories. It's what I'm getting my add this year for fathers day every
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wherever you download podcast. My name is richie case your way. Thanks for this. I think we essentially just started there just to get the juices flowing sorry, I just said juices flowing they went up our job to you and to everyone for saying. radio. Do. This episode was sponsored by. Oh, do We want you to meet Dan, then built a great by company, but his old song where made it impossible for him to keep up with demand. took so much time to make things work, but then he Oh do who automated his business by integrating inventory, manufacturing, accounting and marketing. Now we can meet the demand and grow even faster thanks to oh do Dan doubled, is revenue and can focus on what matters go to owed. Dot com, slash song, to started,
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Transcript generated on 2022-06-07.