Thanks to the simply fan-fucking-tastic immaculate piece of pop music that is 'Over and Overâ€™ - quite possibly one of the singles of 2006 (we dare you to argue) - and the imminent release of the equally brilliant album â€˜The Warningâ€™, Hot Chip are sizing up to be this yearâ€™s, well hot ticket. Admittedly not quite as lively as their vivacious, beat-fuelled live shows, their second long-player â€˜The Warningâ€™ is a subtle and thoughtful electronic work that gradually works its way into your psyche with every listen. New single â€˜Boy From Schoolâ€™ typifies this, built around hypnotic catchy-as-hell vocals, irresistible drum loops and subdued instrumentals, itâ€™s an understated gem. Hot Chip are not just the critics choice, the people love them too.
Gigwise duly spoke to the London boys to discuss all, but sadly for us, speaking to them in a Curry house, for the most part they seem more concerned with shovelling in gobs full of curry than telling us amusing anecdotes. Oh wellâ€¦
The band have recently returned from a sprawling and by all accounts pretty blinding American tour. But the lengthy stint which wasnâ€™t without its hitches. Chief keyboard player and vocalist Alexis Taylor tells us that the band had to do without chief knob twiddler Felix Martin due to a severe bout of illness, but consummate professionals the band battled on. He explains, â€œYeah we lost Felix. We had to figure out how to do his parts whilst we did our own. We got there though.â€
Thankfully, theyâ€™re instilled with a bit more enthusiasm when talking about the actual American shows. Alex continues: â€œAmerica was absolutely great; we played the Bowery ballroom to about six hundred people and really brought the house down. It was amazing seeing that many people in front of usâ€¦ Thankfully, we did have LCD Soundsystemâ€™s drummer on hand to help us out though with Felix not being there. At one point we almost left the stage in fact but yeah we got there.â€ What, actually leave the stage? â€œWell he wanted to leave the stage I think. He wasnâ€™t happy but like I say we got there.â€ Er, right.
Clearly a man of very few words, but fortunately their lack of enthusiasm is overawed by their astounding ability to write cracking pop â€“ album tracks like the aforementioned hypnotic â€˜Over and Overâ€™ and the delicate, stunningly gorgeous â€˜Coloursâ€™ will soundtrack many a summer. We quiz Alex about the video for Boy from Schoolâ€™ with itâ€™s Art Attack style theme: â€œYeah the video was fucking expensive! We actually said that we werenâ€™t going to spend that kind of money again unless we were blowing up cars but weâ€™ll learn. â€œ
The next single choice is wholly unsurprising: â€œWeâ€™re probably going to release â€˜Coloursâ€™ from the album next and possibly re-release â€˜Over and Overâ€™. Itâ€™s the easiest song to sell from the album and last time we didnâ€™t advertise it or anything. It got to number thirty two and we think we can do better. Although we wonâ€™t be selling ring tones next time in the inner sleeve, that just slipped through the net.â€™
Quite possibly more focused on the food in front of him rather than Gigwiseâ€™s quick quips, Alex seems painfully deadpan today. When advised that the man from Gigwise had actually bought two copies of â€˜Over and Overâ€™ there by doubling itâ€™s sales for the week silence greets us. Tumbleweed anyone?
Fortunately for us all, Hot Chip are taking this pop business quite seriously and Alex hints that theyâ€™re in it for the long-haul. Speaking about their decision to sign to EMI in their early days, Alex admits: â€œWe decided we wanted to do this full time so obviously we needed the help of a major. Our label Kitsune in France were cool but we had to make that leap forward to do it properly. They (the record label) made us shorten â€˜Boy From Schoolâ€™s title but weâ€™re there nowâ€™. Hopefully, theyâ€™re only going to have such minor tiffs than this.
If one things for certain with Hot Chip itâ€™s that theyâ€™ve delivered with their sophomore album. Despite giving possibly the most unconvincing threat on record ever heard, on the album title track (sample lyric and softly sung â€œHot Chip will break your legsâ€), as we keep iterating the record is a gem. Sounding like the Postal Service with a much less tormented, younger cousin of Ian Curtis on vocals - every track is pop perfection pure and simple. They may not have to much to say, but does the world really need another Doherty or Bono mouthing off? We think the answer is a short sharp resounding no.