(N)ice Age

Album Leaf's down-to-earth Jimmy LaValle recorded his latest ambient work in Sigur Ròs' frosty Iceland and lived to tell about it

If anything, LaValle wants to demonstrate the human element behind the sometimes-otherworldly feel of ambient rock. That, and he wants to set the record straight about so-called serious artistes such as himself.

"I think there's a whole misconception [about] people who play any kind of music that's remotely emotional," he says. "People on the outside world just feel like, 'Oh, they must be some kind of starving artist.' There's just that classic stereotype . . . people think that a person that does any kind of emotional music has some kind of pain or some kind of this or some kind of that.

"And, of course, there are those kinds of people. But, the reality is, everyone is just their own person."

So, you wouldn't say you're an angsty artist brooding over your musical oeuvre?

"Not at all," he responds. "I go out to bars and drink with my friends."

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