Is there a producer in the house, in the house of Luna? According to band frontman Dean Wareham, who recently returned to the States from a festival appearance in Spain, the band have settled-with "ninety percent certainty" -- on former Grant Lee Buffalo bassist/pianist Paul Kimble to oversee the follow-up to last year's Pup Tent. Although there was the usual debate among band members regarding the selection (the band were at one time considering Beck's Mellow Gold producers Tom Rothrock and Rob Schnapf), ultimately, the choice was simple. "We've all heard [GLB's] records in the past, like the way they sound, they're beautifully produced," Wareham says. Kimble, who produced GLB's first three records, is said to be working on a solo album and, as soon as he's done, he'll join Luna in a New York studio to lay down tracks.
Wareham says he doesn't expect any radical departure from the band's trademark mellow, meandering songcraft, but he hopes the sessions go more quickly than those for Pup Tent, which were produced by Pat McCarthy, the knob-twiddler on R.E.M.'s upcoming album. "We're planning to do it in half the time that we did the last one in," he says. "We want to keep the whole thing sane, as opposed to insane...."
Although much of the album's content is up in the air, "Hello Little One," a song Luna contributed to the Mr. Jealousy soundtrack earlier this year, will be re-recorded; other songs, with the working titles "4,000 Days" and "U.S. Out of My Pants," should also make the cut. The latter, Wareham says with hint of mischief, is also the potential album title. ("The other guys in the band will see it and say 'what the f--- is that!'") Much of the music has been written, but Wareham says he still needs to pen lyrics for the material. "I kind of have to back myself into corner," he says. He'll have to act fast: the band is showcasing the material during a three-night stint at New York's Bowery Ballroom on September 10, 11 and 12. The album is expected to be released in March or April.
In related Wareham news, the man once-dubbed the "James Dean of Alternative Rock," landed a bit part in another Baumbach film called Highball, which is currently being shopped for distribution. "I have, like, four lines and five kisses," he says. "I make out with Justine Bateman." Who says he ain't no Cary Grant?
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