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Mumford & Sons – Hopeless Wanderer

Mumford & Sons are going totally electric on their new album, Wilder Mind…

When Mumford & Sons’ bassist Ted Dwane showed up at his London studio early last year to begin work on the group’s third album, he was confronted with a surprise: a room full of synthesizers. “It was bizarre,” he says. “I didn’t expect we were going to do the same thing again – but this was crazy!”

On their new album, Wilder Mind (out May 4th), Mumford & Sons have mostly removed their signature elements – banjo, acoustic strumming, stomping kick drum – and replaced them with U2-sized guitars, synths, spacey mellotrons and even some drum machines. “We felt that doing the same thing, or the same instrumentation again, just wasn’t for us,” says frontman Marcus Mumford. “We’ve got a broader taste in music than just that.” Adds Dwane, “None of us had really any interest in doing a sort of Babel 2. It was always going to be different.” {…}

While Mumford wrote most of the lyrics for Sigh No More and Babel, the band shared the load this time. “The boys kept coming up with a bunch of amazing lyrics that I found really fun to sing,” said Mumford, who admits he had little to do with writing the intense, slow-building first single “Believe.” ‘It was quite a liberating experience – really relishing singing someone else’s lyrics.” {…}

In sessions at London’s Eastcote Studios, Mumford and producer James Ford traded off drumming duties, while the band built their fresh sound around Ben Lovett’s new keyboards and Marshall’s searing lead guitar. “Anyone was able to pick up a synth, or a drum machine, or electric guitar and just create,” says Mumford, who praises Ford (who’s also worked with Arctic Monkeys and Haim) for helping them find their new sound. “With this album, there was nothing off the table.”

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