The Lumineers launched a brand new single, Ophelia today and we had a quick catch-up session with Jeremiah Fraites (drums, percussion, piano, backing vocals and the list goes on). It seems we’re in for a treat in 2016, as a new album is also on the way…
You guys came to South Africa just over a year ago. Now that you have had some time to process it, what are the one or two greatest memories that stand out from the South African visit?|
The greatest memory for me was playing Joburg to thousands of people. I am not sure, but I wanna say like 10,000 people were there to see us headline? It was crazy. It honestly affected me so much in a positive way that it made me want to write an amazing second album just to come back.
Can we expect you back in South Africa again soon?
Depends on what your definition of soon is, ha. We will certainly return to South Africa 100% without a doubt. I just don’t know when as even the band members don’t know the upcoming tour schedule! Seriously. But, we have to come back. The fans were too amazing and inspiring not to come back. And if you think bands don’t notice that kind of thing, trust me, they do. South Africa rocks.
Your new track Ophelia is dropping today (5th of Feb). It seems like there has been quite some buzz and excitement around the anticipated release among fans on the internet. Are they in for a treat?
If I was not in this band and a fan, I would feel two things: First, I would be pumped and happy that a new song is on the radio. Second, and more importantly I would be burning with anticipation that an entire album of new music is around the corner. We kinda disappeared for 4 years touring the world. This album is coming at exactly the right moment in my eyes.
Any plans for music video or too soon?
There will be a music video for Ophelia. As far as a release, it’s too soon to tell.
Give us a hint: when are you guys planning on releasing the new album? Any working titles? Any ideas of what the album cover art would look like?
Here are 3 hints: We are planning on releasing the album this year in 2016. It will have 11 tracks. And it is amazing.
When we spoke to you guys when you were in South Africa, we touched a little bit on how difficult work on the second album always is for an artist or group. You responded with : Yeah the sophomore slump and all that stuff. It feels hard, if I’m being honest, it feels really difficult. Me and Wes have like three different songs that we have written that I completed in Denver and then after this tour we just go back and keep working so um yeah, we just wanna make music and have some sort of evolution and not be too stagnant and rely on any tricks or anything and just try to make good music. How has the writing process been so far, taking your statement from over a year ago into consideration?
Haha, wow, that quote sounds like I was in a state of despair and depression; pretty standard with me when it comes to writing new stuff. Even after all the attention and Grammy nominations and blah blah blah, I have never disrespected the craft of songwriting. To one day wake up and think “This is easy and I got this 100%” is the day you stop thriving as an artist. Honestly, once we finished and completed Ophelia (which was the first song written and completed for the second album) I felt like it was easier to proceed finishing the album. Ophelia was the cornerstone of this album. For whatever reasons, it was just easier to proceed and shed all the pressure of having to deliver a second album. It became fun again to write and that was a burst of joy to feel that again after touring for so long playing similar sets night after night. The idea of new music was ecstasy.
How do you think you have evolved in the writing process? Have you made any major changes to style or instruments?
I don’t think the writing process evolved all that much, i.e. we treated the writing like a day-job, a 9-5 as it were. the recording is different in this album. its more hi-def and has more low-end and bass on it. The primary instruments stayed the same (piano and guitar) and Wes has delivered a book worth of fascinating lyrics yet again.
Good luck with the album and we’re really looking forward to the end result. Thanks for taking the time to chat to us.
* In the meantime we’ve discovered the track listing of their new album. Indications are that the album might actually be released around April, as they’ve posted a photo suggesting that 8 of the 11 tracks are done and dusted.
Sleep op the Floor
In The Light
Sick in My Head