As a founding member of Dinosaur Jr., J Mascis has been one of our favorite Fender-wielding frontguys for the better part of a quarter century. Even during that band’s intermittent sabbaticals of the late 90s and early aughts, he kept at it, pulling together durable outfits such as Witch and J Mascis and the Fog and also kicking around with Mike Watt and helping to get the Stooges back together. In this special interview conducted in the United Kingdom, J opens up to Ian about the secrets of songwriting, an east-coast punk upbringing, and his near total disregard for the bass guitar.


In the second of this UK-based round of Soft Focus, Ian saddles up beside Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon, perennially fine composers, writers, and artists—and one-half of Sonic Youth. After twice escaping certain disaster, first at the hands of a disappearing interviewee and second at a few haphazardly placed plastic water bottles, Ian recaptures this episode and once again delivers on his promise of insightful, fruit-bearing conversation.

On this third episode of Soft Focus at ATP UK, Ian Svenonius sits down with one of the world’s greatest rock and roll experimentalists, Pete Kember.