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Is every record you make a reaction to the one before it? A response to how the previous album was received by critics and fans? Does it fill a hole in the band’s sense of their catalogue, something that you know you can do musically but haven’t captured yet in the studio? I could lay out a coherent explanation about this record on those terms, and it would be valid. We certainly wanted to make a record that leaned more heavily on us as a duo. We loved being in the studio with Carl Broemel that first time to record “Big Sur”, feeling like the process was so collaborative and the atmosphere so warm. We felt the resulting song was authentic in a new way, less dressed up with studio tricks and more about how our voices and instruments blend and live together.
Ultimately, this record feels more like an expression of the mysterious alchemy of the songs, the studio, the producer, the musicians, and the time in our life. There was a lot swirling around behind us in the studio while we recorded Line of Light. Some of it was personal, like Suz coming to terms again with her bipolar diagnosis as it reared its head right before we went back to Nashville for the final 10-day session. She had to wean our 1-year-old son during the recording session because her medication will harm a nursing child. That was looming over us as we finished up the record.