R.E.M. is planning a full-scale world tour after the release of its in-progress 13th studio album, guitarist Peter Buck revealed in an in-depth interview with fan site Murmurs.com.
R.E.M. is planning a full-scale world tour after the release of its in-progress 13th studio album, guitarist Peter Buck revealed in an in-depth interview with fan site Murmurs.com. The musician also estimated a release date of early next summer for the Warner Bros. album, and discussed the creative process and his other musical adventures.
Buck spoke before the Seattle opening of his previously reported Fast Horse Summer Hootenanny tour with the Minus 5, Tuatara, Wayward Shamans, and bluesman CeDell Davis. The trek hits New York's Knitting Factory tonight and tomorrow (July 29-30).
R.E.M. has a big batch of demos to work on for the upcoming record, which Buck described as likely to be darker and rawer than last year's "Reveal," whose lush production and summery melodies led to multi-platinum international success. "I have a few things I like that are kind of dark, and we'll start with some of those," he said. "And then there are a whole series of demos that are crazy drum machine stuff, and then a whole set of demos that are rock band style."
Backing up bandmate Michael Stipe, who told Billboard.com in May that the group was hoping to tour in support of the new album, Buck said "yeah, we're definitely going to tour." He discussed going to Japan, Australia, Europe, and the U.S., noting that though the touring industry has not been as robust as in past years, R.E.M. has developed a formula to keep its ticket prices "below market."
Buck adds that the band has pondered bringing in other musicians during the record-making process, including Harvey Danger guitarist Joe Gore. "It's just a way to keep things fresh with us," he said. "You don't want any of this to get routine."
He also touched on the new Fast Horse Recordings label that Tuatara/Minus 5 member Barrett Martin formed with percussionist Joe Cripps. The label is planning to release the debut album by Davis, Martin, and Cripps as the Wayward Shamans, and Buck dropped hints that the Minus 5's previously reported collaboration with Wilco, tentatively titled "Down With Wilco," might also be a fit for the label. "One of the reasons we're doing this [label] is that there are a lot of talented people who will never sell 5 million records," Buck said.
Finally, Buck commented on the Internet's music-distribution possibilities, saying he'd like to continue posting non-album or rare R.E.M. material on the group's official Web site, much like the recent "R.E.M. IX" project, which featured 10 remixes of "Reveal" songs. "I'd like to have stuff up there that people can't get otherwise," he said.