Since forming in 1996, Martyn Leaper and the Minders have morphed from Elephant 6 darlings to twee-pop anarchists, throwing love bombs and denouncing nothing. Most non-fans remember the Minders’ auspicious 1998 debut, Hooray For Tuesday, and its unfairly derided follow-up, 2001’s Golden Street, but the band was active until 2006’s slight-but-lovely It’s A Bright Guilty World. The Minders’ only interim release has been the second web-only iteration of their odds-and-sods Cul-De-Sacs And Dead Ends. In the gap, Leaper wrote and demoed new songs when he could crowbar it into his 40-hour work week. Along with renowned producer Larry Crane (Elliott Smith, Sleater-Kinney), Leaper began finding the thread of Into The River, the first actual Minders studio work in a decade. Leaper will be guest editing magnetmagazine.com all week. Read our Minders feature.
Leaper: Touring is a real privilege which I sorely miss when I’m back home working my shitty job. I have found myself wishing and dreaming I could get back to traveling America’s highways during the mundane hours of my working week. Driving into the sunset and crossing the endless solitudes of the American west fills me with a desire for adventure. Touring is exploration, and realizing this is what provides confidence and nourishment for the soul during the challenging moments when playing empty clubs weighs heavy on the heart. These vast expanses of land and lonely highways are the very corridors that have inspired thousands of songs. The American songbook is a child of the highway, and listening to the rhythmic hum of radials on asphalt hammer out the miles is like listening to the progress of one’s own creativity. I love touring, and I hate touring. Either way it is still a privilege.