Need To Know: Marching Band


By Gregory Miller

Jacob Lind chats about why his Swedish band is so popular on soundtracks, ABBA, and accidentally (but happily) marching in a No on 8 protest.

You're good. In the blogosphere, most notably Pitchfork, they've compared you to bands like Belle & Sebastian and the Shins. Do you mind the comparisons?
They're great bands, of course. We don't mind being compared, as long as people don't judge you like you're copying them because I really don't think we are. Those are great bands, but I think we sound like a lot of bands. I think our band can be pretty diverse, but those are definitely bands we've been listening to -- maybe more in our past, not that much in the last couple years. When you first go into music, I think those kinds of bands can affect you even further on when you stop listening for them. They're still in your unconsciousness, but that's OK.

iTunes put you on its front page last year. Did that spark a bigger fan base?
Yeah, I'd say definitely. It was a pretty big deal. You get people writing in comments or blogs or your guestbook or MySpace saying they're hearing about our music in a lot of different places. Definitely a lot of people heard about us through that, as well as other people mentioned they heard it in a TV series. So it was definitely a good thing for us.

On that note, your music has been featured on a crazy amount of shows and movies, like Zombieland, Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist, My New BFF, My Life as Liz, Greek, etc. How do you feel about your music being so popular for soundtracks?
[Laughs] I like it a lot. We both like it a lot. Especially sometimes when the songs are being used to emphasize something that's happening in a scene, like it's been a couple of times. Like the last time in Scrubs, we were the ending song. The song really fit well with how they finished the story. I think that's really nice to see your music being a part of a bigger story. I don't think that's a problem at all. I don't think we're only soundtrack music at all. I just think we have a really good publishing company.

I have to ask: How do you feel about ABBA?
[Laughs]. I, we, Marching Band, has nothing bad to say about ABBA! Bjorn and Benny are great song writers and they have some amazing songs. Everything they've done is not great, they've done some really shitty things as well [Laughs]. But it's classic, it's forever -- they're going to be like Mozart.

Sweden seems to be very gay friendly. Do you notice a big difference between the way LGBT people are treated there versus America?
Sweden definitely has been very progressive politically. All the political parties, from the left to right, all agree very much on those issues. Compared to any country I've been in the world, from my experiences, the little experience I have is that Sweden is really good for what do you call it, HBT or'?

[Laughs] Yeah. We were actually in LA for the protest against the 8, what it's called?

Proposition 8?
Proposition 8. [Laughs] I don't know how but we ended up walking in one of those rallies for like 10 minutes. We were like, 'Okay, we support this! But 10 minutes is enough.' I don't know, Erik really doesn't believe in the idea of a band trying to say something politically, you know, like Bono. It's kind of silly in some ways. But from a private standpoint, I definitely support that. It was weird. It was weird, the whole thing there. Wasn't it like decided that they were allowed and then they took it back?

Yeah, they legalized it and then Prop 8 took it away.
That was really weird. I didn't understand that. That's really weird. So that's America, I guess? Strange things happen.

Marching Band's new album, Pop Cycles, is available now.

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Tags: Music