Ben Lovett and Ted Dwane from Mumford and Sons talk 'Delta'

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Mumford and Sons, left to right: Ted Dwane, Marcus Mumford, Winston Marshall, Ben Lovett. (courtesy Chalk Press Agency)
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Interview: Ben Lovett and Ted Dwane of Mumford and Sons
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Delta, the fourth full-length studio album from Mumford and Sons, releases Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. In the run-up to the album release, New Hot host David Safar spoke to Ben Lovett and Ted Dwane of Mumford and Sons about the forthcoming record.

Listen to the complete interview above and read excerpts below.

Interview Highlights

On whether Delta is "experimental," as Rolling Stone had described it:

BEN LOVETT: Yeah, I guess in some ways, inasmuch as all of our albums have been experiments. [But] experimental music is actually a genre, isn't it? And this isn't that. … I think it touches on, sonically, some of the stuff that we've done previously, but across all records, so there's banjos and double basses, but there's also electric guitars and drums. It's actually like a hybrid of our previous three albums. It's got some influences from Johannesburg, our mini-album we did with Baaba Maal — there's rhythmic influences from that. … But I don't think anyone is going to listen to it and be like, 'This isn't Mumford and Sons.' And that's why we put 'Guiding Light' out, because it feels like that's a song people should know.

On the themes or message of Delta:

LOVETT: It's been inspired by various different things that have changed in our lives, from love and loss and birth, and then there's kids now around, and we've lost family members and friends. There's just quite a lot of change in the last couple of years. I suppose if we had a message, it would be that it's OK to be able to stand up to all those things, good and bad, but do so confidently and embrace it, and not just try to hold on to yesterday as if there couldn't be something better around a corner or that things can't get better. Again, 'Guiding Light' more succinctly does summarize that sense. We feel like we have a bit of a responsibility to get out there as four guys and spread that message to the wider world. It gives us purpose.

On working with producer Paul Epworth on the new album:

TED DWANE: I think as an energy in the room, he's just a very affirmative one, and he instils a lot of confidence in people. … he's got a lot of energy, a lot of inspirational ideas, a beautiful room that has been evolved to suit his working style very effectively. So he is kind of like the fuel in the tank.

We knew that we wanted to broaden the sonic soundscape of what Mumford and Sons might have been in the past without losing everything that we hold dear, everything that we love. It was an interesting process, and it was kind of experimental in that sense; we just tried everything. There was no place we couldn't go sonically; we were just trying on whatever worked, whatever felt good, whatever got the room nodding and tapping their feet, we were like, 'Yeah, OK, OK this is it, we're getting it.' Just pursuing it through a process of experimentation, and Paul is all about that. He's just a very open, excited dude, whom we love.

On how the title Delta can be interpreted in many ways: geographically, mathematically, semiotically:

LOVETT: From our point of view, it's exploring the journey. You know, you take the Mississippi journey down from the safety of the riverbanks … you know where your left is and your right is, and you're on a path that's almost predestined. And then when you get out into the river delta, out into the mouth of that, you're standing on the precipice of the ocean, a horizon unknown. And for us, this is a record that has us standing at that point, from the safety and seclusion of the river, and saying to the ocean that we're up for it, basically.

External Link

Mumford and Sons - official site

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    Mumford and Sons, 'Delta' (Glassnote Records)

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