For the record I didn’t mean to be sensationalistic about the headline, but Billy/William Corgan talking about the evolution of artists and how a mediocre album can lead to a great comeback album to me was very interesting. The Pumpkins frontman recently did an interview with soundandvisionmag.com , here are a couple of excerpts from the interview:
You’re your own best editor.
I have to be. If I’m putting out something, it’s a decision I’ve made, and sometimes it doesn’t have anything to do with musical quality. It has to do with personal satisfaction. I’ve earned the right to f—ing suck. [laughs] I learned that from people like Lou Reed and Neil Young, who both decided, “You know what? This year I’m just going to be me, and I don’t give a f— what you think.”
When people look at that release in a linear timeline, they say, “Oh, that’s the album that wasn’t very good.” But they don’t understand that 4 years later, when the artist makes the “comeback” album, it’s because they made that other album 4 years ago. They don’t understand that for an artist, work is cyclical. Periods revolve around each other. When Neil Young had the acoustic comeback album Harvest Moon [in 1992], it was a return to the Harvest feel, even down to the title. But if he had been doing only Harvest music for 20 straight years, he wouldn’t have been able to revisit it as an older guy with that additional viewpoint. That’s what people don’t understand.
William also said this regarding the former SmashingPumpkins.com webmaster:
I had a Web guy for a while, not a very creative person, who ultimately got fired. At one point he wanted a raise, and I said to him, “You haven’t grown the Web site. When I write a song that becomes a hit song, I sell more tickets and more records. It’s a results-oriented business. So if 10,000 people visit the site every day and 6 months later there’s only 9,000 people visiting the site, that’s a real thing. I can’t guess what they’re thinking, I can just see the numbers.” He said, “Well, if you would visit the site more often or post something, then our numbers would go way up.” I replied, “Yeah, but there’s a reason they don’t put somebody on TV 24 hours a day. It’s the Scarcity Principle.”