These days it’s hard to find bands out there that can say they’ve been together three years, let alone three decades. But then there are groups like Yo La Tengo, which has been steadily releasing album after album of their signature, eclectic compositions.
The band started their musical journey in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1984 and eight years later firmly established a solid trio consisting of Ira Kaplan, Georgia Hubley and James McNew. Since then, the group has consistently defied categorization, eschewing the standard genre labeling with their unpredictable rhythms and often whisper-quiet vocals provided by all members. Though Kaplan is often credited as the lead vocalist, Yo La Tengo is a rare case where it can be argued that there is no lead singer in the traditional sense. Thirteen albums later, their music has maintained a languid consistency that fans appreciate.
In fact, ‘unpredictably consistent’ is probably a good way to describe the band and their persona. It seems they’ve struck a good balance between making the music they want to make while offering longtime and new fans creative and unique experiences with every release.
In their interview for opbmusic, the band talked about their latest album Fade which many consider among Yo La Tengo’s best — no small thing given their catalog and longevity. Having made the switch to new producer John McEntire after two decades of releases produced by Roger Mountenot, the band imbues their latest with audibly tender moments.
Watch the video above to see them perform “Ohm” and visit opbmusic to hear the full interview and see more studio sessions.