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Post Pop Depression At Mr. MusicHead, Wednesday April 27th 2016

iggy

Iggy Pop

 

They say you should never meet your idols, but I don’t see why when your idols are Iggy Pop and Josh Homme. They were both attending the opening of ‘Iggy Pop American Valhalla: The Art of Post Pop Depression’, at Mr. Musichead, and both of them could not have been cooler. The collection of photos taken by Andreas Neumann and Matt Helders documents the making of the album ‘Post Pop Depression’, during the three weeks they spent at the legendary Joshua Tree recording studio Rancho de la Luna.

Neumann is a renown photographer and Helders (Arctic Monkeys) is the drummer on ‘Post Pop Depression’, and he decided, along with Neumann, to capture the scene from the inside while recording with Homme and Pop at the legendary Joshua Tree recording studio Rancho de la Luna. All the pictures are shot in black and white, with vintage lenses and the result is breathtaking. This is what he had to say about the experience:

‘During the recording of Post Pop Depression, other than contributing musically I wanted to tell my side of the story with photography. My main intention was to just shoot in a documentary style and to not be in everybody’s face with a camera all day, I think that’s how I was able to capture intimate moments. First and foremost I was there as the drummer, but I would always have a couple of cameras within reach. At the time, I didn’t know what story I was telling, that was the nature of the whole record. We were making a record on the premise that if was bad or we were just not happy with it, nobody would ever hear it and we’d bury it in the desert.

My aim was to simply document the process but with a creative approach, but also economically, not shooting thousands of photos a day, I shoot a lot of film so when I do occasionally use digital, I still have the same approach, as if I only have a limited amount of frames. A place like Rancho de la Luna in Joshua Tree is full of backdrops, landscapes, beautiful light. For me, it was important to show the fact that we were somewhere so special for this very unique experience.’

The photos capture the loneliness and beauty of the desert, they show the band posing in abandoned parking garage or performing on stage at the Teragram ballroom in Los Angeles. In particular, the exhibit expresses the cooperation and complicity between Josh Homme, Iggy Pop and photographers Andreas Neumann. And I should add that partial proceeds of the sales benefited Josh Homme’s The Sweet Stuff Foundation.

All the artists were present for a little less than an hour, and I took pictures with Iggy and Josh,… because why not? Let’s be clear, I have a profound hate of selfies (nothing against you millennials) and I hate to see myself in pictures, but when do I have another occasion to have my shoulder and back rubbed by Iggy fucking Pop in this lifetime? Never, probably.

Iggy didn’t stay very long, so I had to act very fast. Obviously, many people wanted to take pictures with him and he was sitting on a high chair looking like the precious piece of art everyone wants to be photographed with. What a zoo he was probably thinking, but Iggy has been around and he was very charming with everyone. I think I told him, ‘it is such an honor to meet you, I can’t believe it’. He had this large smile, his piercing blue eyes wide open, and he was just a sweetheart. I know, a career of 50 years makes you very accustomed to this kind of circus, and I must have been the umpteenth person to tell him something so unoriginal!

Josh Homme had come with his entire family, his wife and three cute kids, his mother, brother… and he was hanging around with fans like any regular guy. This man transpires rockstar by each pore of his black leather jacket and nevertheless he is so approachable, asking people for a cigarette, taking all the pictures you want, talking about anything, acting like your best buddy. I know I made him smile/laugh, and that was a great moment. ‘You are my favorite musician,’ told him a young man, ‘Oh that’s because you don’t know me,’ he replied.

They both left too soon, they had to go to the Grammy museum for an interview, I remember telling Iggy ‘I will see you tomorrow at the Greek’ and he thanked me… What? Iggy Pop thanked me and I didn’t even thank him.

More pictures here.

 

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