It was a really tricky time for me – and really special.” Because so much of her focus was on her pregnant wife and the pending arrival of their daughter, Carlile found it easier to surrender control of some of the more excruciating details of the record-making process.
In a departure from earlier albums, pre-production was kept to a bare minimum.
Whereas the improvisational Hendrix sang and played simultaneously, Mc Cready and Carlile divvied up responsibilities – and encountered some challenges as a result.
“We were never able to really play and sing those lines completely in time, since they’re totally intuitive.
Their family was about to expand when Carlile set to work on the new album.
“My wife was about eight months pregnant when we started recording, and nine months when we finished, and the baby was born just a few days later.
“We really wanted the songs to happen in the studio,” she explains.
Nevertheless, Carlile says she and the Twins have discovered unlimited creative opportunities in playing these unplugged shows, which completely eschew microphones and amplification.“There’s the really tight take that happened in the live room, and the really loose one out by the creek, and we doubled it, at equal volume, which is why ‘Wilder’ sounds a bit otherworldly.” Mike Mc Cready joins the band for “Blood Muscle Skin & Bone.” The Pearl Jam guitarist also played a pivotal role in the hard-rocking “Mainstream Kid,” even though he doesn’t play a lick on it.In recent years, Mc Cready and Carlile have dabbled in covering the music of Jimi Hendrix together; their performance of “Machine Gun,” featuring Barrett Martin and Duff Mc Kagan, was a highlight of the November 17, 2012 Hendrix tribute concert at EMP.“We were getting irritated at the smell of each other’s breath,” she says affectionately. “We started playing the song again and we could hear the creek in the background and through the firs.” Bingo!They recorded a whole other take in the great outdoors, and then married the two versions into one.