Out with the new, in with the old - that was the recording methodology behind Ohio alt-rockers Lovedrug's new full-length album WILD BLOOD. Having spent all of 2010 focused on writing new material, pausing only to play SXSW and hone songs on a couple headlining stints, the highly regarded live group sought to capture their truest essence by reverting to the classic style of live studio recording.
"We felt there was a certain energy to these songs that would be lost if we reduced the process to the typical modern method of tracking one part at a time,” says Michael. "We definitely needed to capture the energy and emotion in these songs live because that's how we formed them,’ Jeremy elaborates. ‘Some we recorded just as we wrote them, others were refined on tour, but all of them were written as a band and we needed to preserve that vibrancy."
The band found the perfect recording partner in producer Paul Moak, whose Nashville studio provided an ideal setting for live recording while simultaneously retaining the integrity of studio qualities. Unlike previous albums, the band set up together in one grand room with the actual signals from their various amps isolated from the drums and each other. The band played together live, often running through a song 4 or 5 times as in a rehearsal, oblivious as to whether the 2" analog tape was running. Often surprised when Moak would come over the talk-back with "ok, we got it", the band was able to stay in the moment together.
The result is a tour de force of a tremendous live band, finely honed songs, and performances latent with palpable, honest rocknroll that is both immediately classic and new. "I think we're a band that naturally comes across best live,' says James. 'Particularly since these songs were largely written while playing together, completing the recording excursion the way we did allowed us to maintain the emotional momentum and intensity in the recordings." Thomas agrees, adding "My favorite element about the process was being actively involved every single day. Rather than one person tracking their parts for a week and then just watching everything come together the rest of the time, which feels synthetic, we were functioning together as a band every single day."
The seven years since Lovedrug first burst on the scene with a debut "buzz" album have been eventful to say the least. From major label upstream, A&R layoffs, and landing album #2 on the Billboard 200 as an indie, to label bankruptcies, a cathartic 3rd album to rid the demos, and 700+ international dates along the way, Lovedrug have been forged into a band capable of making the hopeful manifesto that is WILD BLOOD. In writing for this, Lovedrug's 4th album, found singer/writer Michael Shepard drawing on the well earned experiences that give great rock bands their ballast. "Wild Blood is the poster child for what we want to be and what we want to give to people with our music. It's about not giving up, overcoming the odds, and beating back the bully, both in ourselves and around us."
Split-single Pink Champagne/Dinosaur debuted in Fall 2011 with video companions for both, and offering the first taste of the album out March 6, 2012. February will see Spotify feature a 3-song album preview and unique campaign of themed, interactive, and open-collaboration playlists with fans. The band will also play a 4-week residency in Nashville February 14, 21, 28, focusing on a different album each week and concluding with WILD BLOOD on March 6, before hitting the road for headlining dates, SXSW, and touring for the foreseeable future.