Counting Crows have delighted us with their first album release since leaving Geffen Records, 'Somewhere Under Wonderland' - and the tone is very different. But what did Adam Duritz have to say about his latest offering?
We spoke to Adam Duritz about his first album in six years
Released on Capitol, the new album takes a more detached standpoint, stepping out of that first person narrative that was clear on much of his previous work and looking at a variety of characters. 'What you really want to do in a song is make sure to express how you feel about something and I always did that in the context of talking about my own life, and with the play I realised how satisfying it was to express it in other stories', Adam told us in a recent interview. 'That was very liberating for me. I didn't really think of that when I was starting this record, but I knew that I really enjoyed writing for the play.'
One of those stories was expressed in 'Palisades Park'; a story about two friends growing up in the seventies with the setting of an old amusement park in New Jersey. 'It was a place I was kind of fascinated with as a kid', he explains. '[It was] advertised on the back of comic books and when I was a little kid I was always fascinated by this place that Superman and Batman would tell you to go to.' Accompanying this lead single - which clocks in at 8 minutes 21 seconds - is a mini-film directed and written by Bill Fishman, which depicts the story in a coming-of-age style tale.
Despite his newfound interest in third person perspectives, Adam condeded that writing for an album was still an arduous task at the end of day. 'Writing is always very frustrating and very satisfying when you're done. I don't know if I'd ever call it enjoyable', he admitted. 'But that's ok, I don't think everything's supposed to be fun.'
What he does find fun, however, is getting involved in other music projects. October sees him join his long-time friend Ryan Spaulding for their musical showcase, The Outlaw Roadshow, at New York's CMJ Music Marathon; a show that they also brought to SXSW earlier this year. 'It's my favourite thing I do in my life', says Adam. 'I just love being around all the musicians and watching all the great young bands play; it's just very satisfying and you feel like you're playing a part in helping out.'
In November you can catch Counting Crows on tour in the UK, while 'Somewhere Under Wonderland' is available now.