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ML: We had our friend Ana come play trumpet on one song, but that was it.
The L: A lot of press talked about how Visiter was written on the road. How did the writing process go down for this record?
ML: This was the opposite. We didn’t write anything on the road. We were totally spent on any inspiration. There were a couple songs, like “Fables,” that were lingering, a couple riffs that we had worked on, but when we got back from tour in January, it was like “sit down, hole up.” We didn’t have day jobs—just worked a lot on the writing.
The L: And that’s both you and Logan being holed up?
ML: The writing process for this record was less collaborative and more collaborative than on the last record. I did a lot of the writing outside of the studio, in my room. But some of the songs were based off of ideas that we had—like a drum beat that [Logan] had. So it was more collaborative in that the last record was like “song; then add beat.” And this was more about having those two influence each other.
The L: And you have a new producer. Phil Ek?
ML: Yeah, he’s great. But he’s also a fucking bastard (laughs).
The L: Is he kind of a control freak?
ML: No, no, he just has a certain swagger. He’s a rock star. But the greatest guy ever.
Logan Kroeber: We were told to make fun of him. We had a good time.
ML: We’re used to not having somebody slave-driving us, you know?
The L: So he really pushed you guys.
ML: Yeah, he did push us. He had a certain thing that we had to meet to, and we weren’t used to that so there was a big learning curve, but we walked away from it more knowledgeable about recording.
LK: The engineer on the last record [John Askew] was coming at it more from a musician’s perspective, like us, and more about helping us figure ourselves out. And Phil was more, “C’mon you wimps. Get it together.”