Preview – Détective at the Cobalt, Vancouver, Jan 25
Guided by Voices fans – and fans of hooky guitar-pop – take note: Détective, featuring former GBV bassist Jim Greer, plays the Cobalt this Friday, Jan 25.
The Los-Angeles based outfit Détective also includes Guylaine Vivarat (L.A.-based Useless Keys) and Chris Dunn.
Formed in March 2012, Détective has released two EPs, Very Fallen World and Basket of Masks. To coincide with the trio’s national tour opening last year for the reformed “classic lineup” of GBV, Burger Records released a full-length album, However Strange, on cassette last August. In true GBV style, the group is currently working (with Dead Meadow‘s Steve Kille) on a double album.
The band is named after a 1985 Jean-Luc Godard film, which makes sense considering Greer is also a screenwriter. A former SPIN editor (in the ’90s!), Greer also wrote a history of his former band, Guided by Voices: A Brief History and two novels, Artificial Light and The Failure.
We asked Mr. Greer a few questions via email (warning: GBV-related material!):
Shawn Conner: What are some of the non-Détective projects you’re working on?
Jim Greer: I’ve got a book of short stories called Everything Flows coming out this summer. And I’m working on a bunch of movie and TV projects but nothing I’m able to talk about at present without losing limbs.
SC: I think you had finished a screenplay for a (musical) based on the life of Cleopatra for Steve Soderbergh? Do you have any other plans to work with Soderbergh? Like on a GBV biopic!?
JG: We’re still talking about putting Cleo on Broadway. Which I think is a great idea. We’re also working on one or two other things, but sadly no GBV biopic, at least not for now.
SC: A portion of the GBV bio you wrote was dedicated to [GBV frontman] Robert Pollard‘s past and present (at the time) feuds… he seems to take a lot of things personally. Has he mellowed in this regard?
JG: Yes and no.
SC: While touring with the reformed classic lineup last year, what were the songs you were most excited to hear night after night (and how many shows was it)?
JG: We toured with them for about three weeks. I was most excited to hear the new songs, which is good since they were mostly playing new songs. Which were amazing live. Sorry my answers are so short. I’m typing this on my phone. This is the modern world.
SC: I’ve always felt GBV to be very much a boy’s club. How did Guylaine fit in?
JG: Like a glove. Guided By Voices were perfect gentlemen. As always. Except when I was in the band. I’m an asshole.
SC: Apparently the next Detective album will be a double. Is this the result of a GBV-influenced work ethic/aesthetic?
JG: Guided By Voices have never put out a double album. But yeah, we write a lot of songs. That’s what happens when you have two songwriters in the band. Both if whom love Hawkwind.
SC: Can we expect a full-on rock show or a more mellow indie-pop show from Detective?
JG: It will be louder than bombs.