It’s a morning of posts dedicated to the information which Pitchfork’s uncovered. One of the most interesting aspects of this article I found was about the in-fighting, which is still going on. The wounds are still (seemingly) not healed because of the collective failure all five members felt while recording and touring FIOE.
This is how it started…
Bowersock, who sat in on the studio sessions for both Is This It and Room on Fire, recalls the second record being “the beginning of the other guys starting to voice their opinions on the music as forcefully as Julian would voice his.” Fraiture remembers some palpable discomfort on tour as well. “We were all up for working on music and playing, but [Julian] would want to wait to get back to New York and get settled [before writing]. It was a little bit frustrating. Around then he started withdrawing, maybe because he stopped drinking as well. A large part of our relationship was based on that– being at a bar and drinking.”
And the fighting continued to the FIOE sessions, which were, by most accounts, dreadful.
Of all the Strokes, Valensi probably has the most positive memories of the sessions. Most of the others describe the recording process for First Impressions in varying degrees of joylessness. Moretti remembers it being “difficult to put on a smile everyday. It was a get-the-job-done kind of thing.” Fraiture concurs. “The certain thing that makes bands great– the communication, the focus– was starting to recede,” says the bassist. Hammond, meanwhile, checked out entirely. “Talk about not having fun– that’s the understatement of the year. I was balls-to-the-wall fucked up, so it’s hard for me to judge.”
As a general rule, the Strokes aren’t easily satisfied. Most of the band members are quick to criticize each of their studio albums, but First Impressions is a favorite punching bag. All but Casablancas now consider the 52-minute album to be too long. Gentles recalls almost succeeding in getting the album shortened prior to its release as “Julian agreed to [cut three songs] at one point. I told the label and they were happy about it, too, but [Julian] rang me up a couple of weeks later saying he couldn’t do it. He didn’t want the songs sitting around doing nothing.”