Ups and downs.
The tour was fun, but tough. I'm adopting an infant daughter and that's awesome, but challenging when it comes to touring. Westing is the best thing we've done yet, but it's been a slow starter. We have some cool plans for 2017, in spite of that.
For me, Westing was an attention grabber from the first time I played it, and it felt like a natural progression from Mountains. Did you write the songs fresh for the new album or do you keep unrecorded songs back for recordings?
Westing is kind of about the political and social climate, in general. Some songs were completely new, some took pieces of music from even before Mountains and Frankenstein-ed them into new songs. We don't really hang onto material for too long. If it's hot, we track it; if it's not, we tend to forget it.
Where did you record the album? What was the process like?
We recorded it at Cody's house again and one track in an empty industrial office space, but this time with our new MS16 tape machine. We then mixed down to a half-track for a true, all-analog process. The good thing about home recording is that you don't have to rush it or fake a vibe - you can wait until the time and take are right.
We will be taking it out on the road some more this Winter and Spring. I'd like to write some more, but our family obligations are tying that one down for the moment. We'll see - maybe we can pull a surprise or two off. A live album would be rad, I think.
So what are your immediate plans for 2017; are there plans to tour outside of the States?
We hope to go overseas this Summer. Hopefully our booking agent gets a good offer. We don't wanna run up a bunch of debt either, so we'll take what makes the most sense. We want this band to be sustainable.
Do you have a favourite album from this year and are there any bands to look out for in 2017?
Bowie's Blackstar is great. Mondo Drag's Occultation of Light is tops as well. I've mostly picked up older records and reissues this year. I'm on a big Lester Young kick, at present; the Stonewall reissue is killer too.
Look out for OutsideInside (former Carousel), High Definitions (Columbus), Stuyedyed (NYC), Crypt Trip (TX), Cloud Catcher (they recorded their next record at our place). There were a bunch that were cool to play with, but I don't remember all the names.