Seth Avett says he and older brother Scott are "sitting on about 30 songs right now" for the Avett Brothers eighth album, which will be the follow-up to 2013's Top 5 "Magpie and the Dandelion."
Avett adds that he considers the group "at the end or near the end of the sort of compiling process for the album," which has gone on since January. "We really slated out sections of time to finish out the songs and just write the songs and develop the ones we already feel are pretty close," he says. "I"m very excited about them. There's lots of different and opposing directions, lots of dynamics happening. The songs are pretty much there." He predicts a November start for recording, which will again be with Rick Rubin, the Avetts' producer since 2009's lauded "I and Love and You."
"I feel like we're in kind of the perfect place as far as working with someone we feel comfortable with but who also challenges us and we challenge each other," Avett explains. "With our initial work with Rick, and to me it shows up in the work, there was sort of settling period taking place. Now all the newness is out of the way, so we can really get to work, which I think is needed." The Avetts will also likely focus the recording back in California after coming back home to Asheville, N.C., for much of 2012's "The Carpenter" and "Magpie..."
"When we made 'I and Love You' in California, Rick was there every day," Avett says. "When it came time to work on the next one, we wanted to be in North Carolina, in a familiar place that's close to home in a case of any emergencies or things like that. So we'd touch base with Rick periodically and meet up with him when we were in California and talk about it. That was a good process for the sort of 'The Carpenter'/'Magpie' era. But now I'm excited about another opportunity to be in there together (with Rubin), kind of hashing it out and working it out, so hopefully that'll be starting full-bore in November. It's kind of already started, but as far as really trying to find the magic, that will happen hopefully in November."
The Avetts are currently on the road in North America into late September, with three shows booked for Red Rocks Amphitheater near Denver in July as well as an Aug. 3 appearance at Lollapalooza in Chicago. The group will also play a New Year's Eve show at the PNC Arena in Raleigh, N.C.