Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Incubus Happy to Avoid 'Phantom Presence' of Record Labels

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CADY DRELL/RollingStone

Fans have had to wait three years for a follow-up to Incubus’ seventh studio LP If Not Now, When?, but according to frontman Brandon Boyd, the wait may be drawing to a close. "[The band has] been hanging out, and we’ve all been at home and talking about making some new music together at the beginning of 2015," Boyd tells Rolling Stone. "I’m really excited about it because it’s been a long time now. We just needed a little break."

While doing press for his role as Judas Iscariot in the upcoming revival of Jesus Christ Superstar, Boyd suggested the band might take a more independent route on its next album. "We lived out the entirety of a 17-year record contract," he says. "We’re without a management company. We don’t have publishers. We don’t have publicists. We’re like babies right now, except that we’ve been a band for 20-something years."

Incubus’ last two albums—2006’s Light Grenades and 2011’s If Not Now, When?—were both released on Epic and peaked on the Billboard 200 at Number 1 and Number 2, respectively. Despite the albums' success, though, Boyd revealed that the band is seeking a less high-pressure environment for releasing new material.

"The business side of things—especially when it drifts into that sort of big business thing, which we’ve drifted into every once in a while—has downsides to it. Obvious downsides," Boyd says. "There are really wonderful things, too. We get to keep making music; we’ve been afforded the opportunity of being a band. But there’s a big part of me that’s really looking forward to making music without any sort of parent situation lording over us."

Though Boyd refused to speak ill of his band’s former label, he did talk about the artistic possibilities of going into the recording process without any corporate binds. "We were lucky as a band in that the record label never lorded too much," he says. "But there was always this sort of phantom presence. We want to make good art. I don’t think we’d make the music we make if we were lazy. So we don’t need that phantom menace hovering over us at all times."

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