“I just want to make music that’s inspiring,” – St Vincent’s MassEducation
Curling up on the sofa to do this interview, Annie Clark, the musician behind St Vincent flicks through the previous copy of BEAT. “And this is Lykke Li? Well, I guess that’s her face…” We are here to discuss her new album, an intimate reworking of Masseduction. Simplified down to vocals and piano, the album gives the songs a greater edge of raw emotion. Happy to talk about the world other than herself – from if the title of Cate Lebon’s album Mug Museum is a metaphor (“I think she just has a lot of mugs”), to what kind of DJ software is the best, to how she picks which latex pieces to wear on stage, she’s funny and chatty and relaxed – which seems far from the pink box / journalist set up where we last met (Clark decided to redefine the journalist to musician transaction and had journalists crawl through a tiny door into a pink box where she sat listening to something akin to whale noise). Having released Masseduction a year ago, the album hit top 3 in both the Billboard Alternative and Rock charts, and number six in the UK – and of course, in the process, there was a fair old amount of talking about it. But here at BEAT, we don’t really like to revisit old ground with our gently probing interviews, sometimes there’s greater clarity to be found in talking about the rest of the world someone inhabits rather than one small portion of it.