New York-based modern rockers The Walkmen did not record their fifth album, “Lisbon,” in Portugal. But the city, and the country, had some influence over the songs.
“I think it had an effect on some of the lyrics and the words and some of the themes,” says guitarist-keyboardist Paul Maroon, one of three former Jonathan Fire*Eater members who formed The Walkmen in 2000. “But I didn’t write any music over there. I was getting hammered. Oh my God, I like that place.”
Maroon says he and his bandmates were particularly taken by Fado, the traditional Portuguese guitar music that was prevalent around Lisbon — particularly in the bars, which would explain his easy exposure to it.
“It’s this lonesome kind of music that deals with loss and regret or the anticipation of never attaining — a pretty down and out thing,” Maroon, 36, explains. “Matt (Barrick), our drummer, and I went to a Fado bar in town and they just stand up in the middle of the bar and sing for you, and the whole place stops and watches while someone sings the song.
“It was great, and we really enjoyed it. I don’t know how much effect it had on (‘Lisbon’), but I know we’re happy with this one more than the ones that preceded it.”
The Walkmen and AA Bondy perform Sunday at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance, $14 day of show. Call 313-833-9700 or visit www.majesticdetroit.com.
Send your thoughts and comments to