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The SPECifics: Daniel Pujol on Production, Poetry, Plans

Pujol interview

Photo by Jamie Goodsell

Pujol is bringing its high energy, intellectual rock to Phoenix on June 8 at Pub Rock Live. We talked to Daniel Pujol about the band’s latest album (Kludge), his relationship with poetry, and a new album in the works..

Read our interview with Pujol below and get tickets to the upcoming Pub Rock show while they are still available here.

The Spec: Who would you say are your biggest musical or artistic influences?
Pujol: For the past few years I’ve been into Gerhard Richter, casually into Bach counterpoint stuff, and recently started reading Bukowski again.

TS: You recorded this album in a makeshift studio that had to be broken down and reassembled for each recording session. Was this done out of necessity, or did you intentionally present these obstacles to yourself in order to authenticate your album’s status as a kludge?
DP: I named the album after it was finished. The name definitely reflects how it was made. We did basic tracking in the strip mall for both financial and creative reasons. I wanted to work at night in a facility I had easy access to. I didn’t want, or could afford, a $300-500 a day studio. I’ve always preferred home recording and Doni had all his own gear. We just worked with the room. We also acquired some great microphones for basic trading, so I didn’t mind the tear down and set up. Doni and I had the time and facility to pursue recording ideas instead of blowing through sessions while hemorrhaging money I didn’t have.

Pujol at Pub Rock Live, Pujol tour 2014, pujol interviewTS: It feels like there is a strong narrative flowing throughout this album, rather than each song carrying an independent message. Did you start writing and recording the album with this intention? And if not, how did it change during the process?
DP: I think of each song as a chapter within a complete narrative. For the last few albums, I’ve tried to order songs into some kind of cohesive narrative or argument. I work on each song as a totally separate piece. Eventually, I notice some form of thematic similarity, then I start working with a group of songs. I know when to stop writing for a project when I see a topic, story, or line of logic that can articulate itself as a complete narrative.

TS: Do you have a favorite track off of this album? If so, what makes that specific one special to you?
DP: “Youniverse.” I love Brett‘s guitar solo.

TS: On your website you included links to some of your published poetry. Do you consider your poetry and your music to be heavily connected? Or do they come from different modes of thought and inspirations?
DP: I use different mediums when I need to. Some ideas are better expressed in song and some are better expressed on paper. I think working between the both helps me get better at each one. I could get to the point quicker with the poetry. Always room for improvement.

TS: Seeing as you have this interest in poetry as well as music, who are some of your biggest poetic influences?
DP: Frank O’Hara, Charles Bukowski, Elizabeth Bishop, Iggy Pop, etc.

TS: For those who haven’t seen you, how would you describe the experience of seeing a live show of yours?
DP: I don’t know, I’ve never seen it either! I often wonder….

TS: Is there anything that you are currently working on, that you would like fans to know about?
DP: I’ve started working on another record. We play one of the newer new songs in the set. It’s called “June Bug or Chugging Love.” I want to learn about all the different backbeats, experiment with the canon, and make some cool beat music.


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