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Klaxons pursue ambition to be "big pop band"

of the Oakland Press

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Klaxons’ 2007 debut album, “Myths of the Near Future,” earned the British quartet the coveted Mercury Music Prize as well as a pair of NME Awards, including Best Album. That certainly raised the stakes for its follow-up — “Surfing the Void,” which came out in August — but singer-bassist James Righton says the most pressure came from the band itself.

“We’ve always, from the start, wanted to be a big pop band,” Righton, 27, says of the five-year-old group. “We didn’t want to be just a small indie band playing to a few people. We had ambitions to get the music heard by as many people as possible.

“So whatever we do we try to better ourselves and write strong music we all agree is good. We have to go through that filter as a band — not from the outside, but really from kind of within. Anything that goes on around us doesn’t fit, really.”

“Surfing the Void” was not smooth sailing, however. The Klaxons went through a fruitless process with original producer James Ford — “There was no spirit there, none of us in there,” Righton says — before settling in with Ross Robinson in Venice, Calif., and seeing the creative tenor change “immediately.”

“The whole experience was really very uniting,” Righton notes. “We feel stronger and more together as a band. When we write we can write together in a room with all four of us. We’ve gone through lots of stuff, highs and lows and all sorts of things, and we feel like we’re in a really, really good place at the moment which is why it all feels exciting.”

Klaxons and Baby Monsters perform on Wednesday, Sept. 29, at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15. Call 313-833-9700 or visit www.majesticdetroit.com.

Web Site: www.majesticdetroit.com

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