Lady Antebellum 'dial back' for 'Golden' sound

Thu May 9, 2013 5:47pm EDT
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By Vernell Hackett

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (Reuters) - Lady Antebellum are growing up and getting sassy with their fourth studio album, "Golden," embracing a stripped-down sound to showcase their vocal strength as they prepare for an upcoming tour with a baby on board.

The country band, formed by vocalists Hillary Scott, Charles Kelley and guitarist Dave Haywood in Nashville, Tennessee, released its latest album this week, which saw band members drawing on their live tour experiences.

"When we went into the studio we wanted the new record to have that live band sound and we wanted it to be different from the last record," Haywood told Reuters.

The trio, who have picked up seven Grammy awards since their debut self-titled album in 2008 and have become a strong force in the cross-over between country music and pop music, hoped fans would hear a new side to the Lady Antebellum sound.

By keeping the production simple, Haywood said the band wanted to showcase the vocals on "Golden," due in part to the band being more secure in how their voices blend together.

Scott added that the final 12 tracks selected for the album leant themselves to the simpler production.

"It made sense to dial it back, which allowed us more time to spend on vocals and get them exactly the way we wanted them," the singer said.

While most of the band's songs feature romantic lyrics, such as "American Honey," the lead single "Downtown" from the latest album saw the band take on an edgier feel as a sassy Scott sings about demanding her boyfriend to take her out in town.   Continued...

Charles Kelley (L), Hillary Scott and Dave Haywood of Lady Antebellum perform the song "Downtown" during the 48th ACM Awards in Las Vegas April 7, 2013. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni