That Old School Indie Sound Rocks The OC

Built To Spill is playing at the Observatory May 2. Photo courtesy of Built To Spill

Built To Spill is playing at the Observatory May 2

Built to Spill are bringing their infectious indie rock to the Observatory on May 2. There will be “a lot of guitar rockin’,” guitarist/vocalist, Doug Martsch said. “We’re going to play a bunch of songs that we made up and some songs that some other people made up that we learned.”

Last year it was announced that there would be a new album released sometime in 2013. “Well, in the fall, in September, the rhythm section guys quit,” Martsch explained. “I wasn’t really too happy with how the record was going. Both guys did a great job but I was having a hard time finishing it up and I don’t know if the songs were quite there yet. So, when those guys quit, I took that opportunity to can the record.”

Remaining with Martsch in Built to Spill are regulars Brett Netson and Jim Roth, both also on guitar. “We have a new rhythm section,” Martsch stated. “Our bass player, Jason Albertini, he’s been our crew guy for ten years or so. Steve Gere (drums) has been out with us. He’s recorded us and come out, hanging out with us. They’ve been part of our crew for a few years. They know our songs, they know us.”

The current touring lineup has been learning the old songs and will start working on the new material for the upcoming record. “This summer we’re gonna try to work hard and hopefully get a record written, start recording in the fall,” Martsch offered.

Built to Spill formed in 1992 and produced its first major label release, “Perfect from Now On” in 1997. They have released seven full-length albums including their most recent album, “There Is No Enemy” which was released in 2009.

“As I get older it seems like I’m a little bit pickier about what I want to do with my little ideas. It takes more to excite me than it used to do. It’s more and more work to flush out those ideas,” he further explained. “You have your basic idea and it’s something that can be good but you have to figure out a way to deliver it. That’s when it gets a little bit complex.”

When writing a song, Martsch prefers to come up with a melody and then add the words. “I usually have the melody and the meter and the way I want it to sound and then I figure out some words that plug in neatly to that melody.”

Writing while on the road is difficult. “Yea, I don’t do much writing on the road,” Martsch said. “Who knows? Maybe with these new guys we will find some time to do a little bit of writing.”

And perhaps there may even be one or two songs ready to be played live.