During his 25-year career, the musician, DJ, and tea entrepreneur has traveled the globe, staying in thousands of hotels—which helped inspire his new album, Destroyed (Mute, $15), and an accompanying book of his snapshots (Damiani, $40). T+L checks in with him about his life on the road.
Q: Tell us about your latest project.
A: My photos document the unglamorous side of touring. And almost every song on the record had its genesis in a hotel room, usually at around three a.m.
Q: What do you look for in a hotel?
A: My main desire is that a room simply function. I once stayed at a place where an engineer spent half an hour teaching me how to turn on the lights.
Q: Any particular hotel designs catch your eye?
A: In Pôrto Alegre, Brazil, my hotel had these rectilinear blue-tinted windows. They made everything look like a strange, cinematic music video from 1992.
Q: Do you have a favorite hotel?
A: The Augustine, in Prague. It’s located in a former monastery and has a really serene vibe.
Q: What was your worst hotel experience?
A: There’s this hotel in Madrid with all molded plastic furniture and white LED lighting. It was like being inside an iPod: uncomfortable and insane.
Q: Greatest amenity?
A: The Ritz-Carlton in San Francisco welcomed me with a vegan chocolate rendering of one of my album covers. I felt a little guilty eating it.