How Metronomy ?Frontman Joseph Mount Got Scooped by Daft Punk

When Joseph Mount of London-based Metronomy listened to Daft Punk's Random Access Memories, he realized he'd have to change the direction of "Boy Racers," the most upbeat song on his band's 2013 album, Love Letters. He had intended to have the song include a German narrator speaking about how fast boy racers can go, but when he heard the helmeted duo's "Giorgio by Moroder," on which the architect of disco himself tells his life story over grooves created by the electronic music icons, Mount wasn't sure where he wanted to go with the song.

"The whole premise and outcome of the song would have been very different [from Daft Punk's]," Mount says. "The reason why I had been thinking about it was because we had been spending a lot of time in Germany. There's something about the language and its delivery that always seemed quite nice, like Kraftwerk, with the German monotone voice."

The track became an instrumental piece. "Boy Racers" really didn't need vocals on it, anyway. It's the perfect standout song on an innovative electronic album that looks for warmth in analog. Love Letters, inspired by '60s psychedelia and '70s soul, was recorded at East London's Toe Rag Studios, where all recording is done on magnetic tape (White Stripes recorded Elephant there). This forced Mount to take his time with the songs.

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Jason Keil was the Phoenix New Times culture editor from August 2019 to May 2020.
Contact: Jason Keil