Sometimes you have to go back to basics in order to find yourself again. This is something Scottish rock band We Were Promised Jetpacks realized over the course of creating their fourth full-length album, The More I Sleep, The Less I Dream.
After the musicians finished touring 2014’s Unravelling, they decamped home to Scotland and took a breath. They reverted back to their original fo ur members and dealt with several behind the scenes changes. They celebrated a few marriages and tried to remember who they were when not on the road. A decision was made. No more touring until a new album had been written. It wasn’t until early 2018 that they finally felt they had a collection of songs they were proud of. But only after taking a few wrong turns along the way. The first batch of songs were written for the wrong reason, ” Mike says. “We put a lot of pressure on ourselves and ended up writing a certain kind of song. Focusing more on
choruses and structure, trying to simplify everything.”
„We scrapped probably a full album” Adam adds. “Something just felt off about them. They didn’t work at all.” So they regrouped. Instead of focusing on external expectations, they decided to write for themselves. To write songs that made them happy. “The More I Sleep, The Less I Dream” was one of the first songs to help shift the band in the right direction. It didn’t take long to write with all members quickly connecting with its darker vibe.“
All of the songs we scrapped were very calculated, whereas this song just flowed. It was instinctive. That gave us the confidence to believe that we could actually do this, just the four of us,” Mike notes. “After that everything else just clicked.” “I’m glad we got that out of our system.” Adam says. “A lot of the songs on the album are a reaction to that. We wouldn’t have arrived at them without going the wrong way first.“
From there, they focused on making sure each song was fully
realized before even thinking about studios or recording. After meeting up regularly and writing constantly at their rehearsal space in Leith, Edinburgh for two years, the band made sure they knew all of their songs inside out. Every single detail of everyone’s parts poured over, refined, built on. “We didn’t want to fall back on studio tricks or extra sounds,” Mike says. “If it wasn’t right in the room, then it wasn’t right. If a section needed to sound bigger we’d have to find a way to make it sound bigger live in the room. No excuses.“