When interviewing Lower Dens in Austin, Texas, last month, the band's "Nootropics," which comes out Tuesday, had not leaked yet. This reporter asked them to describe the sound of their sophomore album as if they were talking to a parent.
"Well, Dad, I'm going to do what I want. You might not understand it, but a lot of people out there think that it's good," jokes bassist Geoff Graham before considering the question more seriously. "The new album is different from the first one, obviously, we have five people now and we have a lot of different instruments and we use the studio in a new way. I think all in all, it has expanded. ... That's been one good word to use, expansion."
Expansion is a good word to use with Lower Dens. Although singer Jana Hunter already had a number of releases in her own name, the chemistry with her touring lineup began to feel more like a band.
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"I was never really comfortable as a solo artist," says Hunter. "I realized that I had a lot more fun playing with other people and thought that it might extend to writing as well, and it has."
The writing process was new on "Nootropics," too. Last year as they toured behind their debut, "Twin-Hand Movement," they made demos of new songs in their van.
"In the van, with the advent of portable recording," says Hunter, "a lot of the skeletal elements of the songs were written."
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