What: The Men
When: 10 p.m. Friday
Where: hi-dive, 7 S. Broadway, Denver, 303-733-0230
More info: hi-dive.com
T he Men keep changing the way they do things and, as a result, altering the way the music sounds. But while critics are identifying creative leaps, the Brooklyn band sees it as a natural flow.
“People always say how all our records are so different, but it seems like a stream to me,” singer and guitarist Mark Perro said.
The thought came out of his reflection on The Men’s next record, which may or may not sound like New Moon. The latter has been highly praised and much discussed as the band’s turn from something punk-ish to a more Americana or country sound. For that record, the five men of The Men left Brooklyn for a cabin the Adirondacks.
“It was great. I’m sure it had an impact on what was going on. We went up there kind of with nothing … It was really only three songs we were playing and the rest of them we wrote while we were all up there together,” Perro said. “Starting with being in the woods and being away from everything, being with no internet and no phones and no neighbors, we could really focus on writing and recording.”
“I think it sounds like the house. We just packed up all our gear and built a studio in the house and pretty much all day, every day, worked on the music.”
As much as the environment influenced the sound of New Moon, Perro said the band was already headed in that direction. Not a conscious effort, but an inevitable movement. There were also some roster changes between New Moon and the previous record, Open Your Heart, which Perro said set the band up to “see through some of the things that weren’t possible before.”
It wasn’t long after recording New Moon and doing some touring that The Men were back in New York City, in a real studio, taking a much different approach to the next record.
“We took the last three months of the year off last year and we just wrote for three months, which is awesome,” he said. “It’s very different from New Moon because we went in fresh off the road with no time to write at all and all these ideas in our heads.”
They went in with about 30 songs and came out with a 13-track record. All that’s left is to master it. But while the approach was different, Perro doesn’t think the album will sound drastically different than New Moon.
“I think it’s a continuation of those ideas,” he said. “I think New Moon as maybe a burst of inspiration or something, and this new one was kind of being able to settle into those thoughts and maybe fine tune them a little more.”
Maybe what audiences are hearing is more drastically different than what The Men hear from themselves. However it’s translating, it went over well in reviews of New Moon and it’s going over well while the band is on the road.
“It’s going really well. people have been really supportive and the shows have been good,” Perro said. “It’s hard being on the road for personal reasons and the shows have been really good. It keeps the positivity going.”
The tour will bring The Men to the hi-dive tonight at 10 p.m. Forget defining the sound and just go drown in the rock.