Whether you count on us for coverage on your faves or finding you the next big thing, you know we’ve got you covered over here at The Honey POP! And who would we be if we didn’t have your next obsession ready for you on a silver platter? joan is not only going to be the only group you can think or talk about for the foreseeable future, but also the creators of all your new favorite songs. Their new album, superglue, has something for everyone. And by something, we mean the secrets to your own brand of pure serotonin!
Congrats on the debut album! How did you two know when it was time to release a full album?
Thank you! It feels so nice and weird to have it out. We worked on these songs night and day for about 7 months – so for other people other than us two to be able to hear them is really lovely. We’ve never been in a hurry to release an album because we knew it would show itself when it was time.
Buzzing Right On Into It!
And releasing your first album is a huge feat! Can you tell us a little about the story it tells and where did you gain a majority of the album’s inspirations?
HUGE feat. About a year before we started working on this album, we both found ourselves diving into albums that we grew up with again as well as finding new albums that we loved. I listened to all of The Beatles records for the first time, Alan fell back in love with Prince records, and we were sending everything back and forth to each other. It felt like we were kids again finding music for the first time, it was so inspiring. We listened to everything from the 60s to today, discovering new sounds and wanting to incorporate what we felt on those records into ours. The Eagles, Prince, The Beatles, Silk Sonic, Kendrick Lamar, Peter Gabriel, Dijon, James Taylor, Al Green, Stevie Wonder, Third Eye Blind, COIN, Blur, Sure Sure, Oasis, The Japanese House — endless incredible artists influenced this record in some way, directly or indirectly.
In a previous interview with us, you mentioned that you “approach every idea with the same question: does this give us goosebumps?” Were there any tracks that didn’t give you intense goosebumps intentionality but after re-working things, it made it to the album? If so, why did you feel this track was so important in being a part of the album’s story?
I love this question. ‘backseat driving’ is one that I remember taking a while to nail down. We definitely saw some magic in that song, and kept chasing it. I remember when we got the bridge of that song done, though, THAT was when the goosebumps hit really hard. It felt so rewarding to work so hard walking around with a metal detector trying to find the gold and then FINALLY finding it. That’s one of the best parts of writing songs.
Creating The Full Picture
There are some shorter tracks and interludes thrown into the mix that help move superglue along. Why did you decide to add those and can you give us a little bit on how ‘hi’, ‘coffee shop,’ and the album’s intro ‘life death & everything in between,’ came to be?
We knew pretty early on in making this record that we wanted to be super intentional with the songs that made the record. Everything made sense to us as far as the narrative of the record goes, but there were missing little pieces that we felt were needed for the listener to feel immersed in the world of superglue. That’s where the transition tracks came into play, it was just something extra to say “Hey, thanks for listening all the way through. Here’s a little extra candy to taste while listening.”
‘hi’ is an attempt to take you from the environment you see yourself in while listening to ‘monsters’ and bring you into a fun house party environment to listen to ‘feeling like dancing’ — it’s a big jump in feeling, so we wanted to make sure it wasn’t too abrupt. ‘coffee shop’ is a song that we’ve had in the archives for a bit now — we’ve always wanted to do something with it, we just haven’t been able to finish it. The goal was to keep you in the car from ‘backseat driving,’ play with the stereo a little bit and give you a taste of what’s to come on the record, as well as giving you a little extra 10-second tune to enjoy before moving on to the next track.
Please Tell Us More!
The intro was a poem that I wrote about a year before we started writing the album. ‘life death and everything between’ was the working title for the record for a long time, and then one day we just decided to see what it would be like to turn that poem into a song. It just felt like the perfect setup for the entire album.
Wordplay For Days
We love the wordplay in ‘backseat driving.’ What sparked this track and what approach do you take when writing a song of this nature that’s filled with figurative language?
Thank you! We wrote this song in Nashville with our friend Carrie K who is an absolute star. We just went into that session with the title ‘backseat driving’ and that we wanted to try the sort of triplet base groove that it ended up with, and it was a nice little jumping point for the session. We went through so many phrases and words about driving it almost drove us mad, but we got there :). That’s one of our favorites on the album for sure.
‘feeling like dancing’ is one of our favorites on the album! Can you tell us where the inspiration for this song came from? And we’re dying to know what Peter Gabriel song came into your head when you thought up that lyric?
I love that! I love that song so much, I believe it was the first one we wrote for the whole record. I was trying to play with the idea of “you tore my walls down” but making it more clever — we were also listening to Peter Gabriel’s album So a lot during that time, and one of our all-time favorite songs is ‘sledgehammer.’ so the song has a double shout-out to PG — one in the first verse “that Peter Gabriel song”, and then in the second verse “you’re the sledgehammer” 🙂
Call It A Play On Words
The video for ‘superglue’ had us in tears. Did you have a lot of creative input in the video?
UGH us too honestly. We worked on that one with an incredible team called Marcel — Eric Teti and Nick Merola — out of New York. They brought us the treatment for the video and it was exactly what were wanting to go for. We wanted it to be maybe different subjects than you would typically imagine a song like that being about, we wanted it to feel warm and nostalgic, and they absolutely nailed it.
What’s your favorite scene from the video and do you have any super memorable moments from the shoot that you can share?
We were obsessed with the idea of incorporating frame-in-frame visuals in this video since a lot of that was used in the artwork and other visuals throughout the campaign. There is one shot where the man in the video holds a snow globe that was his from the past on one side and we’re playing on the other side. that one crushed us when we first saw it, so cinematic and beautiful.
Lines Worth Immortalizing
The number of lyrics we want tattooed from this album keeps growing with every listen. What’s one lyric that you all wrote that you are still like that one is so good?
That makes me so happy, honestly means so much to us that people listen to the words and take them to heart. ‘flowers’ has a lot for me but, “You used to call me on your drives and some days my ears still burn” is one that I still really love. “Were your ears burning” is such a funny phrase to me and I love that we put it in a chorus. “Sun goes down, wish you were still around” from ‘simple’ is so sad and sweet at the same time. “Carve it in the pavement, every little thing you do” still KILLS me, and also from ‘superglue’ – “Flower in my garden, I can’t wait to watch you bloom” *cries*.
Call It The Essentials
For anyone just getting to know joan. What three songs, from any joan era, would you recommend so they can get a well-rounded feel for your vibe?
That is so incredibly hard and I can’t believe you would even ask us to pick our favorite children as the parents to these songs. 🙂 But if we must, I think ‘brokenhearted,’ ‘drive all night,’ and ‘superglue’ give you a really good spread of who we are and what we’re capable of. Honorable mention for ‘waiting on nothing’ because it’s a sleeper and deserves more.
Thank you for these questions — very thoughtful and such a breath of fresh air to ask questions from someone that has obviously taken the time to listen to our record in and out. Seriously means a lot.
Thank you joan for giving us the opportunity to chat with you and fall somehow even more in love with your art! If it wasn’t already obvious, we’re kind of totally obsessed with their new album superglue and them as a whole. And we think it’s time you hopped on the joan super fan train yourself!