Former Test Icicle Devonte Hynes, aka Dev Metal, presents the rootsier songs from his sweet Lightspeed Champion debut, Falling Off The Lavender Bridge (Domino), as part of NXNE’s South By Southwest send-off party at the Horseshoe Tuesday (March 4) with Major Maker and Great Bloomers. Best of all, it’s free!
When the Test Icicles split two years ago, you claimed the reason was “we were never ever that keen on the music.” Just between you and me, you really hated each other, right?
No, actually we always got along really well. Everyone thinks there must’ve been some other secret reason for the breakup, but we just didn’t see any point in continuing what we were doing.
Why record the Lightspeed Champion album in Nebraska with Mike Mogis and his Saddle Creek pals? Did you wake up one morning and think, “I must go to Omaha”?
Laurence Bell, who runs Domino, is friends with Mike, and he sent him a copy of the weird recordings I was doing for myself. Mike called me up saying he liked my stuff, and we wound up e-mailing back and forth for the next 10 months. When he built his new studio in Omaha, he asked if I’d like to come over and record some songs.
From the sound of Falling Off The Lavender Bridge, it seems like you might’ve been listening to some Postcard pop back in the day. Were you a huge Aztec Camera fan?
Wow, yes, I was definitely into that stuff. It’s interesting how much I’ve learned about myself through doing interviews. A journalist will ask me about some band I haven’t listened to since I was 16, and it’ll remind me that, yeah, I was really into them once. I guess everything you hear eventually shows up in the music you make.
The show you’re playing in Toronto is a SXSW send-off gig. What’s your take on showcasing at music conferences?
Somehow the thought of playing a 20-minute set for a crowd of people who work at glossy music magazines, some bloggers and maybe a few managers and booking agents doesn’t really thrill me. But it may be a chance to see some good bands.
I’d love to do a song for a film, but not some indie thing like Juno. I want to do something huge like Mission: Impossible 4 or the next James Bond movie. That would be amazing!