With three fourths of Guster members entering fatherhood over the last two years, guitarist-vocalist Adam Gardner tells Billboard.com the alternative rock act plans on ending its hiatus by looking back before looking forward with the follow-up release to its most recent studio effort, 2006's "Ganging Up on the Sun."
"Right now I think we have easily two albums worth of material, so it's really hard to know what we'll end up with," Gardner says. "Some of these songs go all over the place but there seems to be a coherence in all of them, which is good. It's still Guster, and we're still focused on melody."
Originally slated to be out in 2009, it now appears a winter/spring release is more likely from Guster, which kicks off its 10-date fall tour Oct. 28 in Charlotte, N.C.
"It was one of those things where we weren't sure what the tour was going to be," Gardner says. "We were hoping to have everything done before, and we're still hoping to do that, but I think it's likely that we'll still be finishing up. But that tour is really about the 10th anniversary of [1999 album] 'Lost and Gone Forever.' That record was really our first major label album we made with Steve Lilywhite, and it seems to be one of the records that resounds with the fanbase pretty heavily.
"So we decided we would do 'An Evening with Guster' with two sets. One is 'Lost and Gone Forever' in its entirety and the other set is different songs we chose, which will be previews from this new record."
In addition to unreleased songs such as the Rockpile-inspired "Jonah" and George Harrison-esque "Lonesome," both of which Guster has previously played live, Gardner said there are plenty of new and currently working title tunes he expects to give stage time on tour. This includes "Yacht Rock," which captures a '70s disco-lite Rod Stewart vibe.
"It's almost disco but not in the way we've been hearing disco coming back these days," Gardner says. "Something that we've always struggled with as a band are songs that aren't incredibly party-ish or dance-y. So we were trying that in some areas and this is one where it was completely unabashed party time. It's something we're hoping will make it on the record because it's really fun."
He adds, "That's just one song but then the new material goes all the way to something that could be a Neil Young song or a Cars song or something that sounds like a tune off of Willie Nelson's 'Teatro.' I think all of these songs are different from what we've done in the past. Whenever we write a record we always feel like this is so different than anything we've done before and how are these songs going to fit together in one cohesive album, but it somehow ends up all working out because it's us. There is just no way of escaping that sound."