Talking to Apples in stereo frontman Robert Schneider is something like sitting around the kitchen table with a few friends and a six-pack while knocking out the screenplay for a new episode of Seinfeld. With Schneider at the controls of this magic-bus ride, he pulls the topics he likes out of thin air like some deranged conjurer, instantly discards and modifies them, apologizes for going off the tracks, backs the engine up to the starting point, begins talking about something entirely different, then excuses himself to take brief notes on some future project while humming a melody that’s just popped into his head. He’s also one of a handful of great songwriters to emerge over the past 20 years, a psych/pop genius whose knack for addictive melodies and memorable lyrics is perfectly obvious on Travellers In Space And Time (Simian/Yep Roc). Schneider will be guest editing magnetmagazine.com all week. Read our new Q&A with him.
Schneider: Jeff Lynne is the awesome lead singer/producer of ELO. His futuristic production vision was a great source of inspiration to our band in making Travellers In Space And Time and the last album, New Magnetic Wonder, as well. Listening to ELO’s Greatest Hits takes me back so vividly to being a little kid in the ’70s and early ’80s, it gives me a flash of the feeling of childhood that I really miss. At the same time, it provides a great production model to build on to send baroque pop music into the future. Also, I am super into the Idle Race, Jeff Lynne’s incredible ’60s band before he joined the Move. Their album The Birthday Party is a perfect psych-pop album, in heavy rotation around my house.