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Superman never ever made any kind of money, yet Crash test Dummies frontman is hopeful

New album is generating more positive feedback than the band has actually received in year


BRAD ROBERTS MAY be the main man behind the Crash test Dummies, however he’s no blockhead. As soon as the Grammy-nominated team started come fade far in 2004, ~ selling millions of albums over the previous decade, and also money slowed to a trickle, he pulled the plug. He thought, because that good.

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But many thanks to a children’s toy dubbed an Optigan and also a new songwriting partner, Roberts and his booming baritone are ago with a new album and a new Canadian tourism that checks right into Toronto this fall.

“What brought me down 6 years ago, when I quit making records,was the it was just not profitable in any way,” says Roberts, from his home in new York City.

“The only way to yes, really make any kind of money is to tour for years, endlessly, and I didn’t really desire to carry out that. So, ns swore off songwriting.”

It was only newly that Roberts had a serendipitous rotate of events when he met Stewart Lerman, a new York–based music producer act a many soundtrack work in recent years. That collaboration, an unified with Roberts’s new found love the vintage instruments, and the Optigan in particular, led to a surge of an innovative energy.

“As we composed songs, we’d come together, carry out overdubs, yet we had actually no intentionally of releasing it. It was more a fun thing we did, and also we didn’t also do it really often,” says Roberts.

“But that turned into a monster, and we came to be quite prolific, and the music turned out so well, and also we both said, we gotta shot and relax this somehow.”

The album Oooh La La! (www.crashtestdummies.com) was released last spring, 11 tracks with a genre selection heretofore unheard that in the Dummies canon. Thanks in huge part, says Roberts, come the Optigan.

A toy native the ’60s, the Optigan used optical film an innovation to generate audio. Roberts compares it to a very low-fi, analog sampler. Children would select any variety of genre discs, sold independently of course, such as big Band, etc Boogie or Polynesian village and beat along.

“It was all meant for civilization who didn’t know exactly how to pat music,” Roberts explains. “It was not considered in any means a skilled recording instrument. You’d have actually been laughed out of the studio at the time. Yet now, in retrospect, it has actually this very eery, evocative quality.”

And many thanks to the selection of discs Roberts had the ability to secure (thank you, eBay), that was quickly exploring new musical styles.

“For example, we are not in the huge band genre, but they had a big band disc, for this reason we created a big band song by virtue of having actually this disc.” Roberts laughs. “It ended up being a fountain of creativity.”

The brand-new album, according to Roberts, is generating more positive feedback 보다 the band has received in years.

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“I’m an extremely happy and also flattered,” states Roberts. “We room really putting our balls out there doing this completely different thing.… and there is plenty much more left. These song are simply the reminder of the iceberg.”

The band, touring together a three- piece, has currently played a variety of dates in crucial American cities and also will it is in making their way through Canada this fall.

“The crowds have actually been unbelievable,” claims Roberts. “We haven’t toured in so lengthy that human being who wanted to see us were dying to watch us. I haven’t had actually this much fun touring in my life.”

Roberts and also the Dummies burst top top the Canadian music scene in 1991 with the now-classic “Superman Song” off your debut album The Ghosts that Haunt Me. Your follow-up, 1993’s God Shuffled his Feet, comprise the hit tune “Mmm, Mmm, Mmm, Mmm,” broke the band in the united States, and also the album offered 10 million copies.