Rae Spoon is both the hunter and the hunted. His latest album Love is a Hunter (Saved By Radio/Vinyl), is a pop-infused exploration of identity, contradiction and longing. Heavily inspired by an extensive period spent in Europe, Spoon examines the various shades of love found everywhere from the club to the internal monsters within. Recorded with Lorrie Matheson in Calgary, Alberta, Love Is A Hunter is Spoon’s most danceable release yet.
Interview With Rae Spoon
DC: We love your music and what you’re doing. How did your love affair with music begin?
RS: I got my start in music at the Pentecostal church I went to as a child. Almost everything about being involved in church was negative, so it’s nice that I got to learn to sing there. I started playing guitar when I was eleven and writing songs when I was twelve. Music has always been an escape for me and a way to process the things that are going on around me.
DC: How did it feel to go from your country roots to the electronic style of music on your Love is a Hunter album? And what motivated you to try something different?
RS: Love Is a Hunter was mainly inspired by the time I spent living in Germany. I was exposed to electronic music from a new perspective. I released three albums of country music and I wanted to grow as an artist.
DC: Can you tell us a little about the internal monsters that came up for you while exploring for the album?
RS: The album is about the point in life where one has to take responsibility and change unhealthy patterns. I think that’s where the internal monsters come from. They are learned things that keep on surfacing. I wrote about finding a community to replace family and finding a home where one is accepted.
DC: Is there a Joan and are the hunters still out there hunting?
RS: Joan is my friend from Wales. The song came out of us comparing our lives as trans people. Even though we grew up in very different places there was a striking similarity. It’s a love song about sticking together. There are still hunters out there (at least where I grew up). The hardest part is never knowing when you are being hunted.
DC: What’s next for you? Are you working on a new album? If so, can you tell us about it?
RS: I’m working on an album that will come out in January 2012 as well as filming a documentary about growing up in Alberta. The new album is a collaboration with Lynn T from Lesbians On Ecstasy and I’m hoping it takes me even further into electronic music.
About Rae Spoon and Love Is A HunterHe continues to navigate through uncharted terrain, blurring musical genres, lyrical lines and electro-infused beats. As a former country crooner with previous releases: Throw Some Dirt On Me (2003), Your Trailer Door (2005), White Hearse Comes Rolling (2006) and the exploration of Canada and colonialism on Polaris nominated Superioryouareinferior (2008), Spoon shifts focus to love found beneath disco balls and the quest for belonging and community.
“Death By Elektro,” sets the precident for the album to extend beyond any preconceived notions. With its honest and confessional approach, Spoon begs to push boundaries. He’s always been a shape-shifter.
“We Can’t Be Lovers,” is the quintessential indie-rock song for anyone who has struggled to muster up the gumption to try and take someone home after a night of dancing and flirtation. While “Love Is A Hunter,” relays the primal, almost animalistic aspects of desire.
Take it or leave it. “You Can Dance,” adopts the philosophy of going after one’s longing, shedding all insecurities and laying out your cards. Once the club lights go up and life continues on, some lovers linger, while others drift out to sea. “Lighthouse,” wades through the various waves of intimacy and internal undress.
“You Like All the Parties,” is a song of struggle and social anxiety. For some a party is a place to masquerade and explore, while others remain hidden within the shadows and commotion, wondering where the spark of their love dissolved.
Part acoustic ballad, part country song, “Joan,” is the ultimate love song to the trans community featuring a duet with ‘The Cliks’ front man Lucas Silveira.
As the glitter-splashed queer anthem “Danger Danger Danger,” illustrates Spoon in the throws of his creative versatility. With heavy bass notes and twinkling dance floor promise, he could debunk the myth that gay bars play bad music.
“Monsters,” combats the internal demons that attempt to devour and question our survival, limitations and perseverance.
After a stint last fall in Berlin, “U-Bahn,” explores the relationship we carry with our surroundings, how history’s narrative travels within us and intertwines with the present. The song came out of a collection of songs recorded with Berlin artist Alexandre Decoupigny called ‘Worauf Wartest Du?’ and features his textured electronic programming.
“Be the light be the light be the light,” is a stunning acoustic epilogue riddled with internal doubt, existential queries and concludes with the realization that all darkness eventually brings light.
Here is a link to Rae Spoon's Website.
Click here to watch a video clip of Rae singing "Love is a Hunter".