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  • Break It Down: Anya Marina

    Wed, 28 Jan 2009 12:55:44

    Break It Down: Anya Marina - <i>Slow & Steady</i> wins the race

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    Fans expecting another lap around the track in the singer songwriter slow lane from Anya Marina might be surprised by the rocking clip at which the singer is now moving on her sophomore release, Slow & Steady Seduction: Phase II. With production assistance from Britt Daniel (Spoon) and Brian Karscig (Louis XIV), this album finds Marina pressing the gas and merging her pop melodies into an edgier lane. It's still a smooth ride, but the view is decidedly more interesting. So we hopped in shotgun for a quick spin through Break It Down territory where she pointed out some of the sights and sounds that make up her "hood."

    What have you been listening to lately?

    Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been listening to a lot of the music coming from my fellow touring partners: Greg Laswell, Jenny Owen Youngs, Lissy Trullie, and The Virgins, and over the last few days I bought some... let’s take a look in my iTunes... some Pinback, Deerhunter, and Q Tip and T.I..

    Where’s your favorite place to chill?

    I prefer to “chill” in my “crib” or in my “’hood” preferably with some nearby “homies,” Dunson.

    What’s the most dramatic thing you ever did to save money as a starving musician?

    The most soul-sucking job I ever had—aside from working 50 hours a week at a desk job—was tending to the never-ending personal needs of a really miserable—yet incredibly wealthy—human being. The whole experience taught me that money doesn’t guarantee happiness or good manners, and that you should always be kind to people working for you. Or at least not make them clean your bathroom with a toothbrush because you had a bad day.

    Tell us one of your favorite song lyrics.

    I love the alliteration here:
    "I don't want a home—I'd ruin that
    Home is where my habits have a habitat"
    -Fiona Apple, "Better Version of Me."

    And here:
    "You sweet talk like a cop and you know it
    You bought a new bag of pot, so let's make a new start
    and that's the way to my heart..."
    -Spoon, "The Way We Get By."

    I love these, too:

    "You won't need a real job
    You won't need a real job
    Because i would love to pay for you
    You could be a good wife to me"
    -Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, "The Maid Needs A Maid."

    "You've got a lot of nerve, after all it was me who left,
    and now you're sleeping with that girl
    that you used to say that you have always hated"
    - Liz Phair, "Combo Platter."

    What is your most cherished musical instrument or accessory?

    My J45

    If you could change one thing two things about the music industry today what would it be?

    More lycra! Less of that vocal thing Top 40 emo boys are doing that sounds a little like dry heaving. I don’t get the appeal.

    What never goes out of style?

    Dignity. Clean nails. The ability to moonwalk or break-dance on command.

    What’s the theme song to your life?

    "Tie between Ordinary Song" by The Little Ones and "Little Person" by Jon Brion.

    What movies, artists, authors or athletes inspire you the most?

    Woody Allen, Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach, Patton Oswalt, Nina Simone, Frank Black.

    What's your favorite way to stay in shape?

    Cross-country pogo sticking, but it’s just so cliché.

    What non-musician would you most like to meet?

    Anthony Bourdain.

    What's your biggest guilty pleasure?

    Though I recently eliminated guilt from my diet, I have at times gleaned a combination of pleasure and subsequent shame from Beyonce and goat’s milk yogurt (interestingly, both have the same amount of carbs per serving). The Real Housewives of Orange County and The Rachel Zoe Project always makes me want to take my own life, but nevertheless, both stay scheduled on my DVR.

    MySpace or Facebook?

    It really depends on the day. If you’re feeling like poring through endless spam from dudes with a penchant for steroids and lots of shiny hair product wanting to know “sup tonite?” then you want to go with myspace. If you’re in the mood to spend a few hours downloading “good karma” or “nicest person” requests, virtual gifts like a “pair of shoes” or “a Russian hat,” or seeing what your 200 internet buddies are thinking and feeling at that particular moment in time, then you really want to give Facebook a shot.

    —The ARTISTdirect Staff

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