Sub Pop recording artist Chad VanGaalen says he has a new album finished but has been spending most of his time on Tarboz, an animated film he has undertaken all by himself.
"I've been working on a movie for the last two years unfortunately, which is slowly turning me insane," he tells Exclaim! "It's an animated, sci-fi cartoon. There's another record that's finished, I was expecting it to come out this fall but apparently that's not a good time to release a record, according to everybody else. But yeah, there'll be a new record coming out, probably in the new year. Maybe February-ish."
While the album has a tentative title — "It's gonna just blow everyone's mind, and I just don't wanna jump the gun on that kind of shit" — VanGaalen won't reveal much more about the new full-length. However, he goes on to say that there will be a book that accompanies his movie once it's done.
"The movie's just been kicking my butt," he says, sounding genuinely beaten down. "I've been doing all of the voices; I've never written a script before so that was a giant pain in the ass. I've finally finished scoring it and doing all the soundtrack work last month. Now I just have to animate it. I'm trying to get it done for October."
VanGaalen describes the film as somewhat autobiographical. "It's kinda like D&D nerdery meets, like, 2001: A Space Odyssey, meets Strange Brew."
Once it's finished, VanGaalen says he might send it out as a pilot to various cartoon networks and enlist some help. By his calculation, he's working on Tarboz 12 hours a day.
"I'm a total control freak," he admits. "Like, you have to compromise [working with others] and I'm just not that good at that, especially with my visual stuff."
Along with working steadily on the film, VanGaalen is playing SappyFest in Sackville, NB, this weekend and is selling 23 copies of a new, 45-minute tape he made exclusively for the festival.
"The tape has a big long drone piece I did for my friend Emily who got pretty sick with cancer a year ago," VanGaalen explains. "She's doing really good now. The other side has a couple of tracks I made with my [five-year-old] daughter Esme. We're in a band called Crocodile Teeth and the Snugglers, and there's at least one song from that on there.
"There's a B-side I just found that's on there. It's like a rasta jam that I made. It's not very good but it'll definitely make you laugh. That was a sour bong hit of a track right there. And there's a track from the movie that I'm working on but it's only in the movie a minute, and I put the whole seven-minute track on there."
Listen to this interview and a new Chad VanGaalen song on the Kreative Kontrol with Vish Khanna podcast.