When a band disappears for nearly two years, one hopes that the time is being spent well. Come back with a record that is a simply a re-hash of what came before and it could well be game over for you. October see’s the release of Strapped, the brand new album from LA’s Sun-sprinklers The Soft Pack – and their first since 2010. Keeping all that made the debut LP so special, they’ve added a big chunk of elegance and a host of new instruments to a mix that was always pretty-damn rocking, and in doing so return with the fresh fervour of a brand new band.

We caught up with guitarist Matty McLoughlin for a chat about the new record…

Welcome back – how is 2012 treating you?

Salutations to you! We’re enjoying the end of summer.

Which records have been soundtracking your Summer so far?

Tones on Tail “Night Music“, Ariel Pink “Mature Themes“, The Chameleons “Script of the Bridge“, Momus “The Tender Pervert“.

Your new record drops at the start of October – What can we expect from it? Sell it to us!

I’ll sell it to you like I used to sell drugs. “It fucks you up nice. Gets you floating and you probably won’t puke. Listen here, instead of $15 I’ll cut you a deal at $11.99…Cuz you seem like a good dude who’s into cool shit and you know my cousin Terry.”

How do you feel it compares to your previous work?

There are more instruments on it like saxophone, synth, random things. The sound is more expansive. There is a funk song and a slow song and other kinds too.

Why did you decided upon Strapped as the title?

We picked “Strapped” as a title because it can mean a couple of things. To me it means “being broke” because we spent all of our money on making the record and had no fun money. There are some darker songs on the record but there are also summery ones. Some autumnal stuff but not really any spring tunes.

How did the writing and recording process compare to your previous work?

We wanted to take our time with this one and took like 2 years to make it. We came up with like 80 song ideas and recorded 30 of them and picked from those. We had a lot more material to choose from this time.

What inspires your songwriting?

I know the song “Captain Ace” was inspired by this sculptor Robert Arneson. Matt (singer and chief lyric writer) got really into him. There is also a song on the record called “Ray’s Mistake” that is inspired by a drink at a main hangout of ours in LA called Tiki Ti’s.

Do you have a personal favourite track on the new LP?

My favorite song on the album is “Bobby Brown” or “Tall Boy”. We’ve been playing the new songs live for about a year. I love playing them. It’s so much more fun to play live now.

Any plans to head over to the UK at some point?

We’ll be touring the UK in January or February of 2013.

What are your plans for the rest of the year?

Touring a lot. Hangin’ out…


Strapped is released on October 1st via Mexican Summer.

Interview by Tom Johnson


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