Over GRAMMY weekend, OneRepublic lead singer Ryan Tedder noted that the band’s third studio album, Native, was originally scheduled for a November 2012 release. When Tedder and his band mates stopped by the studio recently, he cited a couple reasons for the delay, including the influence of Swedish House Mafia on the record.
“It was just like overwhelming because I saw them at Coachella; they were the best performer that whole weekend,” Tedder told me. “Radiohead is one of my favorite bands of all time, but I gotta say like… Black Keys, Bon Iver, Kasabian… none of them held a torch in my opinion to the Swedish House Mafia set.”
Despite Tedder describing himself as “not a card-carrying electronic music fan,” the experienced directly inspired the single, “If I Lose Myself,” along with the general tempo of Native.
“We’re not going to all of the sudden; three years after the fact jump ship and be like, ‘Oh! This is popular now. Let’s go do this!’” he explained. “That’s lame. You’ve got a handful of bands who did jump ship and just went pure electronic… and we’re the furthest from that. And then you’ve have other acts who kind of batted around with electronic; tried to do like a “dance” record and it kind of missed the mark. So we were like, ‘Let’s do it. Let’s hit the nail on the head. And let’s capture that energy but still keep it sounding organic and like a band.’”
OneRepublic also decided to keep two tracks at the last minute – songs that Tedder almost gave away to other artists.
“We had a close call on this record. There was song that we were all really in love with,” revealed guitarist Drew Brown. “We went through a phase of feeling like it wasn’t going to fit with the rest of the continuity of the record. In the last hours of putting the record together there was a big ‘come-to-Jesus’ about like, ‘We absolutely can’t get rid of this song. We have to put it on the record.’”
The band called in Jeff Bhasker, who worked on the latest masterpieces for fun. and Kanye West, to finish the track. “Can’t Stop” made the album, due out March 26.