Morgan Waters is just outside of Bloomington, Indiana, driving through the countryside and discussing why, after a solid year of being on the road with his band, Weaves, that they would want to jump right back into more recording and touring. “We accumulated so many great experiences on that last tour but we felt like being creative again,” he explains about the process crafting the new Weaves album Wide Open. “Jasmyn (Burke, vocalist) had a lot of songs and we were really energized by the idea of performing them.”  The band approached the new set of tracks in a somewhat unorthodox way. “It was a challenge to pare down the ones we wanted to record,” Waters says. “Some songs we would demo and arrange in a more traditional way and others we would just press record and go for it. We wouldn’t necessarily be hearing what we were doing and then we can listen to the tracks more as outsiders for the first time.”

Wide Open is a refreshing listen compared to most modern music because of this. The songs on the record do have a structure but running throughout the album is an element of unpredictability. “We tried to navigate a balance between thinking and not thinking,” says Waters. “Sometimes it’s better that we don’t try to control it and there’s something nice about allowing yourself not to be in control.” This style has also been something that Weaves has worked into their live shows. “We’ve been more improvisational on this tour. It really depends on the mood but we like doing this thing where the audience is unsure of what is improv and what isn't. It’s cool to experience it with the audience. After the shows we sometimes will say to each other what was that,” Waters laughs, “It’s so interesting and cool to have that level of spontaneity. You really get to feed off the energy of the crowd and the venue.”

Doing things their own way has proven to be quite successful for the band. They’ve toured around the world, playing festivals and have received so much exuberant press about their music. This year the band was nominated for a Juno and got to come to Vancouver and experience the award show and the surrounding hoopla. “It was cool,” Waters says of the event. “It was funny doing it. We did come into it feeling a bit like outsiders. Going to the televised show was really fun, getting to see all the bands. We are definitely grateful for the opportunity.” Just because the group has been lauded with accolades, Waters explains that this doesn’t change their focus at all. “We can't help but be Weaves. We aren’t that mouldable of a band. We follow our own thing. We love pop music and writing a catchy song and at the same time we don't feel pulled in any direction. We like to do all these different things and don't feel too much pressure to serve anyone's ideal of what we should be. “

As Weaves heads into this tour energized and refreshed by their success, it’s nice to know that the key to what makes the band tick will remain the same. “I think that when we play together and sort of play off of each other that is the most special thing of all for us. It’s not something that you can always rely on but it’s definitely the fuel for the band moving forward.” 

Weaves will be performing tomorrow, Saturday, May 5th, at The Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Edward Street) in Vancouver.

Check out their website here for additional tour dates.

Photo: Brendan George Ko

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