Yo La Tengo will not ‘Fade’ away

It takes three to Tengo. CREDIT: Carlie Armstrong
It takes three to Tengo. Yo La perform at The Paradise in Boston on Wed. Feb. 13 and at Town Hall in NYC on Sat. Feb. 16.
CREDIT: Carlie Armstrong

 

As Yo La Tengo close in on 30 years as a band, the trio has secured their name as one of the most beloved and longstanding survivors in indie-rock. While most of their contemporaries have already broken up and launched reunion tours, Yo La Tengo continue on their sonic journey without interruption, and with a legacy and longevity revolving around consistency— not so much a consistency of sound, as much as providing a standard in making great, timeless records that will go down in the permanent lexicon and discography of indie-rock music.

Beginning in 1984, and based around the husband and wife harmonies of founding members Ira Kaplan and Georgia Hubley, the addition of James McNew in the early ’90s put the band in a unique position where each of the members was now a potential singer and songwriter, making their music all the more diverse.

They have scored films, appeared on numerous compilations and they even dared to take their already underground following to more obscure levels by creating a garage rock cover band known as “Condo F—s” for anyone following along.

With the recent release of “Fade,” their 13th official LP, the band seems to have created one of their most thematic and introspective records to date.
Beginning with the lines: “Sometimes the bad guys come out on top/ Sometimes the good guys lose/ We try not to lose our hearts/ Not to lose our minds,” you get the sense that this is an album dealing with maturity and a search for answers.

And though the feeling seems to continue on throughout the record, according to the band, the theme may not have been conscious at all.

“I probably would say it’s not true,” says singer and guitarist Ira Kaplan. “But I could be lying. Although the songs are written over a year, the lyrics are not. The lyrics are written very quickly. We tend to sing along in a sort of nonsense kind of way and even record the songs without lyrics and at the last second come up with them. I think because of the speed and the concentrated space in which the lyrics are written, the songs end up talking to each other. But in no way is there a plan. It just sort of takes shape the way it does organically, not with a concept put behind it.”

With access to friends and jazz musicians who appear on “Fade,” Yo La Tengo’s sound progression seems to continue to grow stylistically in dynamic while continuing to soften in decibel. But even that is put into question.

“Sometimes we’re also not the best judge of those types of things,” says Kaplan. “We think we create a balance and maybe certain things jump out more than others. What we are doing on this show though, is extremely different. We will essentially be our own opening act. So we do a first set of quieter songs and then the second set is louder.”


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Memorial held for Sean Collier, MIT police officer…

More than 1,600 people gathered at MIT on Friday for a memorial service for Sean Collier, the police officer shot to death a year ago in the aftermath of the…

National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox defeat Orioles, 4-2

Brock Holt the difference in the Red Sox' win

NHL

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump…

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump Bruins in Game 1

MLB

MLB video highlights: Orioles top Red Sox, 8-4…

John Lackey roughed up for second straight outing

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.