Can you talk about your process in terms of making albums and how that might relate to your next album?
Micah Middaugh: I think we enjoy more stumbling into songs. Sometimes I'll be down in the print shop, and Trevor will be upstairs on the piano, and he's never going to remember what he does. He'll play something amazing and then be like "I forgot it." So I always have a handheld recorder. Sometimes I'll just record it while he's playing, and I'll be downstairs on the woodcut press. I'll just say some random words to go along with it. Looking back on it or playing it back, there will be a cluster or a moment that will feel really good. Sometimes whole songs come from that.
Trevor Hobbs: I feel like the moments that Micah recognizes aren't necessarily the ones I would've picked. We'll play something back and he'll say "Okay, that right there is a whole song." And I'll ask him "What do you see in that?"
Andréa Moreno-Beals: We come from such different musical backgrounds and experience music so differently, even now, after having working together for a really long time. I feel like we are inspired by similar things while being inspired by different things. I think past albums have come together, and they always will, by each of us doing our own thing. We want to take it to another level of doing that, but we're also searching for something we can all mutually feel. Like a sound that we're searching for.
Micah: So many bands do the tour thing, and they're on the road, and they think about music. They go to record stores and they think about the show all day, and then they play the show. I feel like we never fit into that. We want to be distracted and not think about the shows. When it comes to recording, we've been inspired by [tourmates] Little Wing's approach to music. Basically it's hanging out with friends and capturing moments that you know won't happen again. It's easy to say but kind of hard to do. In the studio, it's finding the song, and not just continually overdubbing parts. You have to trust that what you're doing has this feel, this life. When we record in the cabin that's the strongest thing. Those moments where it's like "Oh man, we've got to explore that moment." If you can make a song that's just that moment...that's it. That's what we're always trying to chase. Sometimes you find it, sometimes you have to let it rest and come back to it.
When did you guys get into music?
Trevor: I went into school thinking I was going to do music, but I just couldn't get in. So because of that I had to choose something else to study. And also because of that, I met Micah and Andrea. If I would've been good enough at music reading and the whole conservatory thing, then I would've went down this separate musical path.
Andrea: I was the opposite. Private cello lessons, classically trained, all through high school...everyone thought I was just going to be on the track to become a classical cellist. I auditioned to some music schools and got in. And then I just made this big inner decision. "No, I'm not going to be a musician for my career, I don't want that."
Trevor: Same with me. It's kind of like, once you got the musical side of your life established early on, it's kind of hard to leave it. It stays with you.
Talk about how you view the difference between songwriting and storytelling.
Micah: I think sometimes you don't need any words and a song is completely open. I also think my favorite stories are full of words and completely open. There's a musical feeling of being transported somewhere because you're feeling it really deeply and you're having your own relationship with it. And then there's a storyteller, giving you a story that you kind of take from it whatever you relate to. They both kind of have their places. This winter, we will be creating some different feeling about where we want to go next with the next album. Right now we don't have anything. I think we all have our own take on it, but we'll bring it together.