On the Song Exploder podcast, host Hrishikesh Hirway talks to musicians who take apart their songs and, piece by piece, tell the stories of how they were made. Listen below.

The New Pornographers are kind of a supergroup. Comprised of seven members, including Neko Case and Dan Bejar, the band is full of musicians who are all acclaimed songwriters with their own successful solo careers. But the New Pornographers are led by A.C. Newman, and in this episode, he breaks down the title song from their sixth album Brill Bruisers. The track came from a totally simple chord progression, and Newman delights in digging into how he got specific about all the nonsense syllables. They’re not just thrown out without any thought, Newman put great care into how that chorus line sounds. Plus you’ll hear some insights from bassist and co-producer John Collins, who talks about how sometimes attempting to add more layers of complexity can get in the way of a simple tune that works. Hirway’s interview with Newman was recorded live at The Greene Space at WNYC.


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Song Exploder: Why the New Pornographers’ ‘Brill Bruisers’ Needed Nonsense