By Noah Hubbell
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"I'm not saying we've been blinders-down to the music industry," says Halborg. "We have dabbled, but for the most part, we've kept people away from us. People come at us with their propositions, and we're like, 'That's not what we're talking about. That's not what we're talking about at all. We're talking about something sacred that we hold precious and that we're trying to develop.'"
To that end, the band has a surrounded itself with people who not only get what they're doing, but who are just as invested in it as they are. It's all about "circling the wagons to keep back the trouble," as Halborg sings on "Lost Lake Woods Club," referring to people like Jeff Kanan and Nick Sullivan from Silo Studios, who recorded four songs on the new record; Jason Livermore, from the Blasting Room, who recorded a pair of tracks and mastered the album; and particularly Samantha Hanson, who traded PR work for studio time so they could finish the record. "It's great," says Halborg, "because it's people who dig the music."
With a clear perspective, pure motives and a supportive network of friends, it's easy to see how the whole thing still seems fresh to the guys.
"It's so weird being a band for ten years and still feeling such newness to it," says Halborg, who still marvels at little things, like getting a new PA for the practice space, which allows him to finally hear himself when he's singing. Or how inadvertently adjusting the strap on his bass recently allows him to now play more efficiently. Or taking voice lessons for the first time. "It's really weird to have that. I don't know if it's because we haven't been slapped down by industry stuff or whatever. I think we've just been so excited with the process of making music, and I don't know if that's ever going to go.
"I don't know, though," he concludes. "I haven't toured 200 days of the year. Maybe if you do that, everything starts sucking. I don't know. But the way that we've done it to this point, we're still excited to go to practice."