Q: What happened to your last band, Convoy?
A: Everyone took a vacation after touring and a few of us decided to write a couple songs. We have a friend in France who has a flat and the same tape machine that we do and we spent two weeks there recording what became the first Louis XIV album. We didn’t know we were ending anything, but we didn’t know that we were starting anything like this, either.
Q: When did it get “made”?
A: The second we finished the first album we loved it and figured that no one would get it. Shortly after we started working on what’s now The Best Little Secrets Are Kept and from there bigger artists started hyping us up; The Killers asked us to go out on the road with them and other bands were giving us sweet gigs and props that got us a lot of attention and a record deal as a new band. We didn’t even try to do anything is the thing. So my advice is just to give up completely on everything then it will turn into something. [laughs]
Q: Is Louis XIV a concept project?
A: The first album actually was the concept album; it’s about a boy who started to think he was Louis XIV. But no, we do whatever comes naturally to us. As artists and me as a songwriter, you just evolve with your tastes. I’ve always listened to everything from Willie Nelson to T-Rex. It’s like you have this big tray pan of different influences that’s almost just like colors. If you threw all of those into a bucket, picked it up and threw it on the wall, you can’t then say, “Now would you guys say this painting is kind of influenced by blue or by red?”
Q: Let me qualify “concept” with “songs about screwing.”
A: I wouldn’t call Best Little Secrets a concept album; women just happen to be a vehicle in it. We get so much for being “sex rockers” with that album, but really there are more songs not about sex than about sex.
Q: So then just the first teeming half of the record is about sex …
A: [Laughs] Yeah … there’s definitely sexuality there; it’s playful, fun. I don’t know if we were getting too much or too little sex at the time, but it just sort of happened that all those songs went to the same party.