Indy: The new CD, How We Operate, is out on ATO Records, the label-co-owned by Dave Matthews. This comes after you split with Virgin Records. I get the sense How We Operate is an important record for the band.
Peacock: A lot of people should know about us that don't. I mean, in the U.K., a lot of people kind of just haven't heard the last couple of albums at all. A lot of people don't even know we're around.
Indy: How We Operate strips back on the electronics and other effects that were part of the sound on In Our Gun and Split the Difference. Why did you go for a more organic, rootsier sound?
Peacock: At times we have thrown pretty well everything on it, and sometimes, while that's kind of musically interesting, it kind of makes the songs underneath it a bit more difficult to see. I think we've always written good songs, but sometimes it's been a little bit hidden away behind; there's too much going on.
Indy: Gil Norton, who's known for his work with the Pixies and Foo Fighters, produced your new album. How did he help you achieve your goals for the CD?
Blackburn: He's very good at [simplifying songs] and saying, "That's what you need for the song." We learned that very quickly: Streamline the part. Make it as melodic as it needs to be or whatever, or make it less complex for this section, and let all the melodies come through. The song has to be audible. And at the right time, go to town [instrumentally] and do whatever you want.
At Boulder's Fox Theater, May 16.