Our tender hearts were cradled when Feist released her don’t call it a comeback record, “Pleasure,” last Friday. It’s a slow-build track that comes to life with soft guitars and harmonies until it crashes into a rollicking chorus. It’s also the first single from her upcoming album of the same name, out April 28.
And since Leslie is emerging back into this world of sharing her music and promoting her work, she appeared on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 Radio show on Apple Music on Tuesday morning. Lowe was super invested in her return to music, and eased Feist into the interview by asking about her single, which comes first on the new album.
“It’s the first song on the record, first people are hearing, it’s sort of chapter 1,” Feist said. “I am an album listener. When I want to hear what someone’s up to, I will dive into the headphones for the hour that they’ve laid out for me for the complete thought. And sort of magpie plucking songs out of their context before you’ve actually understood where it’s coming from — I always feel a bit nasty if I do that.”
The majority of the album was created by Feist and collaborators Mocky and Renaud Latang, after she ended her tour that supported 2011’s Metals. Those shows required a large band, including the vocal group Mountain Man, so when she stepped away from the large production, she realized she only had herself. That became the philosophy of the new album.
“The song should never get so arranged that they need more than me to hold them up,” Feist told Lowe. “Like my musculature, my skeletal frame should be able to hold up the songs and there’s a feeling in that of a real flamethrower, just one, something simple.”
Because of the simplicity of Pleasure, Feist didn’t need as much of her frequent collaborators, including genius pianist/producer Chilly Gonzales.
“What he does is like 10 fingers and I kinda wanted just two,” she said. “I wanted not full chords, just like tiny voicings, nothing rich, nothing full. A little bit more like a pencil drawing than a full expressive water color.”
But of course, anytime you split up a powerful pair, there are going to be rumors, and that’s why Feist suggested to Lowe that she should preemptively start her own.
“We were joking that we have to fabricate a beef because why was he not involved?” she said. Lowe played a dramatic bomb sound effect, faking a sensationalized voiceover — “Exclusive!” he growled. “All that classical music so irritating,” Feist joked.
While on the air, Feist also discussed the return of her band Broken Social Scene, along with her 10th anniversary of The Reminder. Make sure you peep the whole interview — it’s only 15 minutes, so no excuses!