No Age is a punk rock band from Los Angeles, California.

Tell me about the current recording process some.
We started recording our record kind of like, a while ago. And during the recording we got asked by Todd Cole at Rodarte to make this short film, or this short soundtrack for this short film they were doing for fashion week. So it’s funny. We did that and we also did this…do you know Brian Rodinger? We also did this three-song collaboration with Brian for this ten inch he’s doing for I think Soundscreen? But those two things happened in the middle of our recording which is good because we got to take a break and do shit other than that, just different kinds of songs. So it was really good. I think it actually added to the recording because we took a break from recording and came back to it and started making more music that was more raw and weird.

I feel like we recorded a lot of stuff…we have a lot of stuff recorded. We technically could have had a record done like, two months ago, but it wouldn’t have been the record we wanted to make. It would have been kind of, not perfect, you know?

Do you leave a lot of stuff on the cutting room floor? How does that work?
We record a lot. Like this, we probably have 18 or 19 things and we’re not going to use all of them. We just write stuff in such different ways sometimes. There’s some stuff that’s just guitar-based and some that’s all sample-based and a lot of times a song will be made and while we’re recording it or while we’re making a demo we might take a whole drum track out or change the sample, or something. Just completely change it. So it takes a little while. Some of the songs happen really quick and some we just sit on. We’re trying to approach this so it takes a minute. This is the longest we’ve spent on anything, by far. And I feel so good about it. I’m super, super amped. This Rodarte thing, we finished the soundtrack…I think we did like 12 minutes but they ended up making the edit for eight minutes, for the fashion people. We performed it live at the REDCAT theater that’s run by Cal Arts out here a few nights ago? It was fucking awesome. Loud as shit. I was just doing samples and Randy was playing guitar, that’s what we did for the soundtrack. It was really fun.

I was just talking to Angus from Liars, and a lot of the themes from their record Sisterworld are tied to their feeling of alienation living and working in LA. Do you get that same feeling?
I don’t know man. I don’t really think it’s alienating. I tend to say the opposite.

I feel like, our record maybe has similar themes because we alienated ourselves from our friends just because we’re in a band that’s popular or something, you know? And we tour a shit ton. After you leave town for a few months, people tend to move on and do different stuff. If it’s any of those themes, it might just because it’s something we literally did to ourselves and I think this record’s more about taking control of our life and not letting whatever other people think or whatever we’re supposed to do happen, you know what I mean? I think it’s easy to get thrown into some…especially in the world of music it’s easy for people to be like, you do this and you’re a band and you do this, and here’s what’s worked. We work so hard to avoid all that shit. We’re constantly battling everyone, labels and managers and people who I feel like don’t get it. 

Realistically, anyone that’s in a band is trying to make music and essentially trying to run a business. I feel totally OK saying that, me and Randy run a business. But it’s like, a business in the way that we want to run it. For us, No Age is just sort of an entity and I feel like I identify as an artist more than just like a musician or something. Really because the way we run our art and our business and the way we collaborate with people and make decisions, which I guess isn’t really based on business, it’s based on like, feelings and stuff. But I dunno, it’s kind of based on business. I feel like a lot of people do stuff that doesn’t make sense in the monetary way because they’re supposed to do things like that, touring in a bus, or something. It’s like, you’re making like $10,000 a show or something, and a bus costs $1000 a day? For me, spending $1000 a day on something? I feel like, I dunno man, trying to run a business and an art thing in music.

The only reason we do have apartments now is maybe some stuff because, punk. Because we’re frugal motherfuckers, man. We can’t spend $1000 on a bus.

Yeah, I can't imagine you guys are spending a lot on, food and stuff.
Actually, I spend the most money on food. Me and Randy are both vegan. Food is the one thing that like, I will spend whatever on food because I can’t skimp on that. Health to me is a big thing. I only spend money on food.

Also, you’re in grocery store heaven (LA). I’m in grocery store hell (NYC)!
Yeah man! Fuck. The produce out here…

I’m so pumped. I haven’t done an interview yet about the record. We recorded more stuff yesterday, I was doing some vocal stuff and like, we’re just so pumped. We almost had a record and then it was just like, we were sitting there listening to it, and we were like, this isn’t right. You know? It should’ve been done. It would have been a good record but it wouldn’t have been pushing anything forward, making something that was super heavy and transcendent. Now it’s on track and it’s going to be sick. This record rules! But I always say that. I think you gotta make the music that you wanna hear, so to me it makes perfect sense that what we’re making is the best, do you know what I mean? I feel like people trip when I say shit like that but I don’t really care. If you think about music all the time and you listen to music and you want to make music, you should make it sound and feel and look exactly like an extension of what you want, what’s in your dream. I’m stoked cuz like, we’ve been doing it for some time now so we’ve figured out little tricks. We’re producing the record ourselves, we’ve learned how to make things sound a certain way. But, just by doing that, we’ve made so many mistakes. That’s my favorite thing, fucking up and learning the lesson. Oh, that didn’t work, and it sounded like shit, but I’m going for this. Then I read this thing and I asked someone, and now I know how to make it sound like that.

Does the record have a name?
Not yet. I feel like we basically have all the songs. I’m supposed to go do more vocals today then some more tomorrow, Sunday. Tomorrow’s Easter, huh? So, I don’t know. I think we might be done with it this week. It’s pretty far along. There’s no name. Two of the songs we’ve had for like, shit, over a year. We actually recorded them when we recorded the Losing Feeling EP but then we recorded a different version. We’ve had them for a while. There’s some older stuff on there but there’s some super new stuff. It just feels like a harder record. Not like music hard, just hard. There’s more intricate sample stuff and better sound and more intensity. Also, stuff is more stripped. It’s kind of all over but it melds really well. When we get in there to do the sequencing, which is our favorite part, we add little flourishes and bring things in and out and sequence the record. I think it’s going to be good. It sounds like, fuck dude, I actually have no idea. It sounds like a No Age thing. I don’t even know what that sounds like.

Lots of hooks.
There’s hooks! There’s some fucking hooks! It’s funny because Weirdo Rippers was basically our first record but we just broke it up into EPs. And it’s like, that record has a lot more space on it. You can just kind of get into something. Nouns, there’s some space on there but we wanted to make a record that was more live-based. I feel like Weirdo Rippers, half the songs we couldn’t play live or figure out how to play live. This new one I think it’s almost like a mix of live and also stuff we don’t care if we can play live. But  I think that the interesting thing is now that we’ve figured out how to play stuff like that live, stuff that’s more ambient or not really drum-and-guitar-based, or not maybe as drum-based. It’s good we have another person in the band.

So you have a Geologist.
Yeah, we made that joke. We call him the Gynecologist.

The way we did it before was I had an SP sampler that I would trigger with my drumsticks. Early on, I had a 505 sampler where I had to fucking reach behind me and mess with the mixer. I had a sampler. Randy had two samplers. We would basically trigger those things every song, but I’d be doing that and playing drums and singing, which is fine and it works, but the new songs we literally couldn’t pull off with just the two of us. Adding a third person, it’s such a sigh of relief. It’s a change, just changing things up. So now they’re triggering all the samples, manipulating Randy’s guitars and my vocals live too. They have a line, they have a mixer and samples that runs from my guitar and my vocals. It’s pretty fucking cool.

I heard this weird story about Jonah Hill trying to swoop in on Randy’s girls, or something like that? We have some mutual friends. Care to comment?
(laughs) {Our friend} told us the other night that he was trying to swoop in on her, but I think it was after they were dating. So I think your rumor might be bunk.

(laughs) Fuck!

Just wanted that No Age/Jonah Hill beef.
Yeah. Fuck that motherfucker!

It sounds like a random beef generator. NO AGE and JONAH HILL.
Totally. Just pick two random things. I think Randy’s hung with him, because he’s friends with the dudes who do Family.

I was hoping to start some kind of Internet riot.
I try not to fuck with the Internet.

I wanted to Carles to write about it. Once he writes about it…
Then it’s gone.

Why did you guys pull out of MtyMx?
We didn’t go because we missed our bus. We did a No Age party at SXSW. Big Freedia played and Dave Portner DJed. That shit ran till like 7 am or something, and we were supposed to catch a bus at 8 and we missed the bus and we couldn’t get the flight. Now, it did sound sketchy, we know we were sketched out, but we were going to go. We wanted to go, but we missed the fucking boat. At the same time, people were trying to have me do interviews about that, trying to have us blast Todd or have him blast us or something. People just want to create some sort of drama.

We were going to go. It was scary but it was going to be kind of an adventure.

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© 2009

No Age Interview

Corban Goble