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Interview:
Iration keeps its reggae on the sunshine side
 

By GARY GRAFF
Digital First Media, @GraffonMusic

» See more SOUND CHECK

Iration's Micah Pueschel says the group's new album, "Hotting Up," falls "much closer to the original vision of what we set out to do than anything before."

And there's good reason for that.

During the making of 2013's "Automatic," fellow percussionist Kai Rediske, who shared lead vocals with Pueschel, left the California reggae group. Pueschel re-recorded Rediske's vocal tracks -- "It was like an emergency band-adjust thing," he says -- but "Hotting Up," which came out in August, allowed Pueschel to establish himself as the sextet's chief creative force.

"I've written or co-written almost everything we've done before, but Kai had a different kind of style and a different point of view when he was writing," Pueschel, 33, says by phone from a tour stop in Boston. "The goal this time was to get 10 songs that we really felt were 100 percent what we wanted on the record. And I feel like it came together really nicely."

Pueschel says part of the key was taking more time with the songs, incorporating more input -- from fellow guitarist Micah Brown and producer Dave Manzoor -- and working particularly hard on the drum sounds and rhythm tracks. "We wanted it to sound big," Pueschel notes. "We wanted it to sound like we had taken a step forward production-wise. And I think we really accomplished getting every song to a place we wanted to get it. I can't say that, 100 percent, about every song we've done in the past."

Iration is, of course, planning to promote "Hotting Up" well into 2016. But the group was so happy with the recording process this time around that it hopes to "keep getting at it" whenever there's a chance to work on new material.

"It's a big undertaking, making a record," Pueschel says. "It's along haul, but it's enjoyable, and it's something I love doing. I love making records. It's a good release for me, artistically, but it also comes with a bit of pain before you get to an end result you're happy with."

Iration, The Green and Hours Eastly

Friday, Oct. 30. Doors open at 7 p.m.

Saint Andrews Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit.

Tickets are $20.

Call 313-961-8137 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff

 



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