The Dears frontman Murray A. Lightburn is already preparing for the potential backlash that could stem from the Montreal-based band's next album featuring a few more rays of sunshine than its forlorn

The Dears frontman Murray A. Lightburn is already preparing for the potential backlash that could stem from the Montreal-based band's next album featuring a few more rays of sunshine than its forlorn 2004 predecessor, "No Cities Left."

"Oh there will be backlash, I'm sure," Lightburn tells Billboard.com, noting that a dozen new tracks are in various stages of preparation. "This next album is more about love than any record we've ever made and if anybody wants to crap on that, then they are just crapping on love and I think that's really sad. I'm not 16 years old anymore. I'm not going to live and wallow in melancholy for the rest of my life. I'm looking to things that will make me whole again for the first time."

Currently finishing up an American touring leg before heading to London to open a June 24 show with New Order, the sextet has been revolving such new tracks as "Gang of Losers," "Hate Then Love," "Raise the Dead," "High Above a Lake of Fire" into its live set. After the band performs at the Cisco Systems Blues Festival" on July 14 in Ottawa and the Siren Music Festival two days later in Brooklyn, Lightburn says he'll take a few weeks off before reconvening the group. He hopes to begin recording the new album in late summer or early fall.

"We have a lot of [the album] mapped out about how we want to go about it," Lightburn says. "We want to get it done fairly quickly. I think we'll rehearse the crap out of it and approach it almost from a live perspective because one of the biggest curses we've had in our record making is being able to bring the energy we have live into the studio. So I think if we can get some really raw performances and then round it out with some really nice production on top of it, we can make a really kick-ass record."

One unresolved hurdle for Lightburn and company is the Dears' label situation, which involves five different companies around the globe: Maple/Universal (Canada); spinART (U.S.); Speak'n'Spell (Australia and New Zealand); Pony Canyon (Japan) and Bella Union (United Kingdom) in partnership with V2 (Europe). Unlike "No Cities Left," which was sporadically released globally over the past two years, Lightburn is hoping for one street date for the tentative early 2006 album.

In terms of material, Lightburn says he's still enamored with the notion of the epic song but plans on being more succinct with his songwriting. "I think if we can still make a record that means a lot and at the same time make it super, super tight in terms of length, it would make us feel really good," he says.

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