Latin Grammys 2018

#AlternativeFacts Podcast: Preoccupations Talk Dazzling New Post-Punk LP, Exploring Space (Sort Of) With Jack White

Pooneh Ghana
Preoccupations

All “preoccupations” jokes aside, Matt Flegel and Scott Munro are glad people are asking about their music again.

The Calgary band born as Viet Cong in 2012 opted to change its controversial name on the heels of a widely-acclaimed debut album. “I feel like [2016’s Preoccupations] got overshadowed because of all the controversy around the name change,” frontman Matt Flegel says on this week’s #AlternativeFacts podcast.

Preoccupations' latest album is helping to turn the tide. New Material (out last Friday, March 23, on Jagjaguwar Records) is a wonder of a modern post-punk record, rife with icy, industrial edges and glistening, kaleidoscopic innards. Flegel calls it their “most experimental” work, a “no-constraints kind of record;” he’s not joking. 

“The music was never spoken of on the last record,” the bassist-vocalist laments, thinking back to the previous promotion cycle. “This time, people are listening and asking about the music more.”

Previous Episodes: Dashboard Confessional | BØRNS | Tonight Alive | Jeff Rosenstock

But we didn’t just ask them about the music. A couple years ago, Preoccupations got asked to  play a rather…non-traditional show at Jack White’s Third Man Records store in Detroit. Munro recounts: 

“They were trying to set the record for the furthest away from the earth that a record was ever played… they got real NASA scientists to build a weather ballon they sent up into the air. We played music until the weather balloon was going up.”

After that, the details get a little hazy, as Flegel and Munro embarked on a journey of their own, though we sure enjoyed their account of the evening. 

Listen to the 'cast below:

#AlternativeFacts is a weekly Billboard podcast devoted to all things alternative music. Click here to subscribe to the #AlternativeFacts Podcast on iTunes. Let us know what you think on Twitter (@cpayneonaplane) and by rating the podcast on iTunes.