Just over a week ago Taylor Swift surprised fans with her ninth album Evermore, the sister record to July's Folklore. The National's Aaron Dessner helped produce and co-write songs for both albums alongside Swift and Jack Antonoff, and last week he spoke to Billboard about the experience, and discussed his forthcoming plans.
When asked how he's feeling energy wise following the two albums (and the false rumour of a third surprise album), Dessner responded, "I think we both feel like it was Mission: Impossible -- and we pulled it off. I imagine that we’ll make music together in some ways forever, because it was that sort of chemistry, and I’m so thankful and grateful for what happened, but I think there’s a lot there. It’s not just the two albums, there’s also bonus tracks, and two of my favourite songs aren’t even on this record. We’re not pouring into another one now."
Dessner continued, "I’m going to finish the Big Red Machine album -- I was really very close to finishing it when all of a sudden the Folklore and Evermore vortex opened up, and actually Taylor has been really helpful and involved with that as well - and The National is starting to talk about making music, and I think she’ll probably take a break. But I’m so excited for any future things we might do -- it’s definitely a lifelong relationship. And I’d say the same for all the people who worked on these records, including my brother and everybody who contributed. It’s a really special legacy."
When asked about the pressure of following up Folklore, Dessner replied, "I think because of how we made it, it really wasn’t like producing some giant record or something, it still had this very homespun feeling to it. There may have been a moment or two when I think Taylor was wondering when and how to put out Evermore, but I think the stronger it became, and as each song came together, it just started to feel like, "This is a sister record" -- it’s part of the same current of creativity and collaboration and the stories feel inter-related."