Back in 2003, with their dance-punk debut, Echoes, the Rapture “pinpointed an era,” in the words of singer Luke Jenner. But “LCD Soundsystem had their moment, TV on the Radio had their moment. We’ve never actually claimed our space.” After nearly breaking up, they’re back, with In the Grace of Your Love, hoping that moment is upon them. They spoke with Amos Barshad.
Have you been working on this album since Pieces of the People We Love came out, five years ago?
Gabe Andruzzi: Since ’08. Right before Luke left the band for a while.
How’d that go down?
Jenner: It was super-dramatic. I went to a business meeting that we were having at our management office…
Andruzzi: We’re sitting down on the couches in a circle, and Luke says, “Well, before this meeting starts, I just want to let you know that I quit.” And then he left.
Jenner: It wasn’t “Fuck you guys”; I was more “This is what I gotta do.”
Jenner: Pieces was a really hard record for me. I didn’t get to say what I wanted to say, and it felt like I had a lot to say. I was really afraid of conflict. I just went around most of my life being really hurt. I was a ticking time bomb—it was just a matter of time before I decided that I’d decide that I’d never talk to you again.
Andruzzi: It was the culmination of our dysfunctionality. It had to fall apart for us to start solving the problems.
How did you put it back together?
Jenner:It started on the personal side for me. My mom died; she took her own life five years ago. I hadn’t talked to my dad in a few years. I learned how to communicate with my wife first. And I tried to bring that over to the band. I watched an episode of Friends once, and one of the couples, they were getting into a fight, and the guy starts breaking up with the girl, and the girl is like, “So if you have a problem, you just, like, break up? You know, there’s another option. We can talk about it?” And he’s like, “Oh, really? Okay!” It was the first time in my life I ever went back and said, “Hey, let’s talk about this.”
Andruzzi: Luke came back, and we started over. We had cleaned our house, and it became really easy to do the work. We wrote and demoed most of the record in three, three and a half months. And we found [producer] Philippe [Zdar], and he really lifted us up.
Jenner: The band philosophy has always been to pick somebody whose work you like and then just get out of the way.
Andruzzi: That’s your philosophy. I don’t know if that’s the band philosophy.
You gotta talk that out.
Jenner: [Laughs.] There’s nothing to work out. That’s how Gabe thinks.
Andruzzi: That can be Luke’s philosophy. It’s cool.