June 11, 2012


The Shins' James Mercer Talks New Lineup, Old Songs

Fuse's Juliya Chernetsky caught up with the Shins' frontman James Mercer at Bonnaroo 2012 and talked about what it's like performing old material with an all-new Shins lineup (excepting Mercer, of course).

"It's interesting, the person's personality changes the parts, subtly," Mercer tells Fuse. "I've allowed a lot of freedom to riff and come up with new ideas."

He also chatted about the covers—from Pink Floyd to Squeeze—they've been peppering their sets with, and finding ways to stay engaged with their oldest material. "Now that we've got some new people in the band, that freshens it up a bit," he says, adding it doesn't take much to get him excited to play "New Slang" for fans. "That song is pretty effective even on me when we play it. It hasn't been that difficult to keep from getting bored."

But could "New Slang" ever get old? Check out the video above and then tell us what you think. And head over here for our complete coverage of Bonnaroo 2012, including interviews with performers, photo highlights and the best moments from the fest's final day.