Built To Spill’s Martsch Discusses Guitar Influences

Built to Spill

Built To Spill frontman Doug Martsch spoke with Australia’s Time Off magazine about the influence Neil Young and Dinosaur Jr’s J Mascis has had on his guitar playing. “Those guys both had a huge effect, especially J,” Martsch admitted to Steve Bell. “Then I realized that he learned his stuff from Neil Young – I didn’t listen to any Neil Young stuff really until I was a Dinosaur Jr fan. [Sonic Youth’s] Thurston Moore is kind of in there too. It kind of has to do with the fact that those guys are technically great – I think J is technically really amazing, and Neil Young is technically a lot better than me – but there is something that they were both doing that didn’t have anything to do with being technical, it had to do with just the way they were hearing it. There were just a lot of things that I learned from them about just feeling your way through a song, instead of making specific notes.” The article at timeoff.com.au has since been removed.

Built To Spill In Concert

Built to Spill

Built to Spill performed live concert at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC on Tuesday (October 10) with the Santa Cruz jam band Camper Van Beethoven. Listen to a replay of the show at NPR.org.

Built To Spill Frontman Bounces Back From Eye Injury

Built to Spill frontman Doug Martsch tells Seattle Weekly he didn’t think much of it when he sustained an eye injury earlier this year during a pickup basketball game. An eventual trip to a physician, however, revealed he’d suffered a detached retina, and the prognosis was not good. “When the doctor first saw it, he was like, ‘Well, we should at least attempt surgery,’ but he didn’t think it was gonna work out,” Martsch says over the phone from his home in Boise, Idaho. “They were pretty sure I was gonna be blind in that eye.” Though he’s now still dealing with double vision and a scar on his retina that likely will never go away, he says that in some strange way, he’s grateful the injury occurred. “Now I go to bed thinking about music again,” he said. “After this thing, I’ve really kinda been put back on my right course.” Read more.

Built To Spill Easily Melds Musical Styles

Kevin McKeough of the Chicago Tribune reviewed Built to Spill’s performance at Metro on Wednesday night (September 17). McKeough says, “With nothing motivating their current tour other than the indie rock gas-up-the-van-and-get-out-for-the-fans ethos, Built to Spill performed less as rock guitar gods than as a bunch of unassuming guys from Idaho with an ear for whatever songs are in the air.” Chicagotribune.com has since removed the article.

Built To Spill Opts For Tour Over New Album

Built To Spill frontman Doug Martsch spoke with Billboard.com about the reason the group is touring instead of putting out new music. “At the time I booked the tour, I thought that we would be closer to making a record [and that] it would be good to tighten us up and get us ready to record,” Martsch said. “But it turns out our drummer [Scott
Plouf] has been going to baking school for a year and a half, and he has school all summer, so he hasn’t gotten enough practicing in. So, it looks like we’ll be playing old songs, and a couple of new ones. We probably won’t get back into the studio until next spring now.”

Martsch Pleases Himself With Songwriting

Doug Elfman of the Las Vegas Review Journal talked with Built to Spill frontman Doug Martsch who says he doesn’t write songs to please anyone but himself. “I couldn’t tailor things if I wanted to,” he said. “I’m not that skilled of a musician or a songwriter to sit down” and write a hit, he says. “All of our records have come about from working on it, and working on it, until it’s fleshed out.” The full story at reviewjournal.com has since been removed.

Martsch: Netson’s A ‘Huge Influence’ On His Guitar Playing

Built to Spill singer/guitarist Doug Martsch spoke with Piotr Orlov of the Phoenix New Times about the influence on his guitar playing by bandmate Brett Netson. Martsch cites him as “a huge influence. He gave me a mindset with which to play. He was the one who told me that if you make a mistake, just repeat it two or three times, and then it’s a part. And within the last few years, he’s affected me again, with how careful and deliberate a guitar player he is.” Read more.

Built to Spill’s Doug Martsch Tries The Blues

Maya Singer of the Dallas Observer caught up with Built to Spill’s Doug Martsch to talk about his first solo album, ‘Now You Know’. Martsch was asked why he decided to do a solo blues based album but he didn’t seem to have an answer. “I don’t know,” he admits. “I mean, does anyone ever really know why something speaks to them when it does? Obviously, I’d heard the blues before, I’d listened to it–like, the way you listen to something you think you should listen to, either because it seems like some kind of artistic obligation or, hell, because you spent $10 on Bowie’s ‘Heroes’, and even though you’re, like, what the fu** is this, you still feel like you should put in the time.”