What started ten years ago as a few friends jamming in a Williamsburg bedroom has since become the electronic dream pop indie sensation, Au Revoir Simone. Comprised of Erika Foster, Annie Heart, and Heather D'Angelo, the trio has released three studio albums and their fourth, Move In Spectrums comes out September 24th. SPIN Magazine describes their sound as "the best make-out music," but we've heard the new album is going to be a departure. We'll find out tonight when they take to the stage at The Standard, East Village. We also asked them about it and other pressing items:
STANDARD CULTURE: The name of your band comes from Pee-wee's Big Adventure. Any particular reason why?
Heather: We're all really big fans of the movie, and we thought that the scene where Simone, the waitress, moves to Paris to follow her dreams was really sweet, and resonated with our own dreams for our band. We also love that Pee-wee kind of mangles the pronunciation of "Au Revoir Simone," which is something we encourage our fans to do.
Annie: The movie was a huge part of my life and deeply influenced my sense of humor and love of the absurd.
Erika: I was also a huge fan of Pee-wee Herman, and as I recall, the name just felt right the way nothing else did.
Have you ever met the man himself, Paul Reubens?
Heather: Yes! My mother-in-law represents one of the actors in the Broadway production of Pee-wee's Playhouse. She got me into the performance and then backstage afterwards to meet Paul Reubens. It was a dream come true.
Erika: I've never met him but we have a mutual friend and we've been able to contact him and hope to connect in real life one day.
If you had to rename the band for your 10-year anniversary, using another scene from a movie, what would it be?
Heather:I'd probably look to Weekend at Bernie's for inspiration.
Annie: "Fondly, Dirk Calloway."
Erika: Something from the '80s movie After Hours, "Our New Paradigm of The Absurd".
What about a David Lynch film?
Heather: Oh dear, his films are all so dark, I'm not sure if there is anything to mine from any of them. Maybe a band name that you'd have to say backwards?
Erika: There are some great lines----good excuse to re-watch all his movies...
When is the first time that you met him? You guys have kind of an interesting relationship.
Heather: We first met David at a Barnes and Noble event for his new book, Catching the Big Fish. He read a few selected passages while we played background music. It was a very strange but serendipitous experience.
Were you fans of his before he became fans of yours?
Heather: Of course! I loved his film, Blue Velvet.
Annie: Definitely. I mean, his films and of course Twin Peaks, are like vortexes and completely absorb your attention and then stay with you for years afterwards. I feel the same way about the music he's making now, it's hypnotic.
What is the inspiration for the upcoming album "Move In Spectrums?"
Heather: In terms of songwriting, I was inspired by the usual things: growing up, being in love, and contemplating the reasons that people choose one path over another. In terms of sound, this album was produced to sound more minimal, clear, and upbeat. We listened to a lot of different music from Madonna to Santigold.
Erika: Ideas came in from all directions, lots of them fueled by new keyboards that we added to our arsenal and new drum beats-we started experimenting with more sophisticated beat making, building up from nothing rather than adding to presets...
How long did it take you to complete it?
Heather: We started casually writing songs again together last year around January, but didn't start recording until June, and we finished sometime around May. So a year and half--ish?
Erika: I think a little longer than that.
Does the sound differ from past albums?
Heather: It's more crisp and cool sounding.
Erika: I think it feels more positive and driving.
What would be your dream tour?
Heather: We would love to tour with Phoenix.
Annie: I would love to open for Phoenix, for sure, but my absolute dream is Drake.
Erika: To play with Nile Rodgers and David Bowie.
What's the most ironic thing in the world?
Heather: In the whole world? The whole entire world? Probably that humans are the most intelligent species.
Annie: Well said, H.
What can we expect at the upcoming show at The Standard, East Village, besides all the usual etheric goodness?
Erika: You'll just have to wait and find out...We are so excited for the show!