Lee Ranaldo has been playing out with the members of The Dust since before his last album, 2012's "Between the Times and the Tides" came out.
Now, he says, "I finally felt like it deserved to have a name," and the idea that the quartet is indeed a band had a marked impact on the Sonic Youth guitarist's just-released new effort, "Last Night on Earth."
"This record is so much more of a band record," explains Ranaldo, 57. "I've gotten very comfortable with these guys, and they were very instrumental to the way the songs were arranged and came about.
"It kind of took a year for the band to solidify around me and get off the ground and get to be something in terms of alive band and a comfortable band. For this record we worked so much together in the studio on the songs, much more than the way the first record was done, when I sketched the songs out on my own and brought people in to play on them. This one we did more together."
The Dust also includes Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley, but Ranaldo says neither musician feels like he's biding time while their band is on an open-ended hiatus.
"Everybody seems quite energized by what they're doing at the moment," Ranaldo says. "None of us are discussing any band-related future activity with each other. I don't think any of us feel like it's necessarily over and done for good, but it's a good time to just let it sleep, and I'm happy to have the time to put into what I'm doing with (The Dust) right now."
Lee Ranaldo and The Dust and Brokeback perform Saturday, Oct. 12, at Trinospheres, 1464 Gratiot, Detroit. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12. Call 313-737-6606 or visit www.trinospheres.com.
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