When Grouplove first announced their increasingly-more-topical album 'Healer', they probably didn't expect it to land in the middle of a pandemic. "We just wanted to have a fun summer," Hannah Hooper said at the time, of the record's creation. "We found that feeling again on this album. We're addressing that life is hard. We understand and we are going through it with you." It's weird how things align, innit? Recorded at El Paso, TX's famed Sonic Ranch with producer Dave Sitek, their newfound enthusiasm won't restock Tesco's shelves with loo roll, but it will make your day a little less grey. Here they talk us through the album, track by track.
This was the first song we wrote for the album. It came out of a four-hour jam, and the lyrics came during an 11-mile hike on the Northern California coast.
I always have this visual of guts and intestines on the outside of our bodies and our skin on the inside regarding this track.
Chrisitan, our friend Alex Walker, and I wrote this originally for a soundtrack, but we knew we had to be selfish with it and keep it.
The Great Unknown
Wessy wrote this riff on a guitar-shaped like an assault rifle plugged into a boombox and [David] Sitek was wearing a t-shirt that said: "Make America Mexico Again".
We wrote and recorded all night and finished around noon the next day, piled into Sitek's infinity blasting the track on repeat and drove into El Paso for fireworks and jerky.
There is a place we're all running from, but we don't know how to get there.
The door to the studio was wide open while we recorded this track, whenever someone would hit stop you could hear protesters on megaphones outside the Tornillo detention centres.
Ahead of Myself
We were shooting a lot of Super 8 Film while we were in Malay's studio, and while Ben was drumming, you can audibly hear the sound of the camera in the drum track.
When we finished this track at 9am after recording all night, we blasted it for honestly four hours on repeat.
I realized the other night when we were singing this on stage, this isn't about death but about putting things behind us, burying them, so we can move forward.
This is Everything
I was laying on the floor singing through an FX pedal, and five minutes later the song was written. We didn't play it again until we recorded it. So the first time we played it we wrote it, the second time we played it we recorded it.
Grouplove's album 'Healer' is out now.