Butch Vig On Why It Was ‘Difficult’ To Work With Smashing Pumpkins

Garbage's drummer explained the main differences between 'Strange Little Birds' and the band's previous albums


Garbage’s Butch Vig was interviewed by Chilean magazine Revista Metrónomo. He talked about his career as  producer and as a musician. He also explained the main differences between ‘Strange Little Birds’ and Garbage’s previous albums.

Vig explained, when he had to produce Foo Fighters, Green Day and Smashing Pumpkins’ albums, he had to remember that he had to help the musicians to record what they had in mind. He said a good producer has to be detached, in order to help the band members. Furthermore, Vig explained he always had to remember, while producing other musicians’ records that it was their own music and not his.

About his role in Garbage, Butch Vig said, even though he is the drummer, he can play guitar, keyboards, write songs, he can be an engineer or a producer, because he is a member of the band. He explained he can be whatever the band needs in only one day, and that’s what he likes about Garbage. He can be creative in different ways.

Vig remembered it was difficult to work on Smashing Pumpkins’ ‘Siamese Dream’. He said he had set high standards. The band recorded the whole album in about five months, and they worked for about 14 hours a day, seven days a week. Even though the recording process was tough, Vig thinks the results were great and the album still sounds fresh.

About ‘Strange Little Birds’, Garbage’s last album, Vig said the members of the band had to free their own minds while writing the songs. Furthermore, he played keyboards and drums in many tracks. Butch Vig also said Shirley Manson wrote the lyrics really quickly and spontaneously. He also explained the band makes the music after the lyrics and, unlike other Garbage albums, the last one was recorded quickly, without thinking too much about arrangements.