The National Hitting The Studio In June

Indie rock act the National will return to the studio in June to record the follow-up to last year's "Alligator."

Indie rock act the National will return to the studio in June to record the follow-up to last year's "Alligator." After nearly a year of touring, the Brooklyn-based band is in the midst of writing new tunes for the as-yet-untitled effort, which will be released in spring 2007 via Beggars Banquet.

"Touring for the amount of time that we did was really great and fun, but it was starting to cut into our personal lives. So we're happy to be home," guitarist Aaron Dessner tells Billboard.com. "'Alligator' was thrown together kind of quickly. We want to take more time with this one."

The group will continue to co-produce with Peter Katis, and while it is "too early to tell" if there will be any dramatic stylistic changes, the additional writing time may lead to some "less straightforward" songs, according to Dessner.

The group is considering a short tour in the fall in Europe. A May 21 one-off in New York and four subsequent U.K. dates will follow, as will a handful of summer European festival appearances.

In addition, the National has been tapped by AIDS awareness organization Red Hot to contribute a track to an upcoming benefit compilation, which will be likely be released early next year. While Dessner deigned to say exactly which other artists will be included, he said some "very significant indie rock bands" will be contributing.

As previously reported, Aaron's brother Bryce is curating the first Music Now Festival, which begins tonight (April 26) in the Dessner's Cincinnati hometown. The event will feature performances from Bryce's band the Clogs as well as the Books and Wilco drummer Glenn Kotche.

The Dessner brothers also contributed instrumental originals to the Charlize Theron-produced documentary "East of Havana," which was screened at this year's South By Southwest Music & Media Conference.