RM: It was like that except for the anger after The Sameness of Difference session. But man‚ I came back a month later to mix it with Gene Paul‚ and when we were mixing‚ both of us were just like aghast at the transformation that happened‚ as soon as Gene got his magic fingers on it. That guy's mixed so many of my favorite records. I mean‚ God. Kimock and I-we were just listening to some Aretha Franklin today that Gene Paul engineered in the '60s. You know? I was like‚ God. I'm so pleased with the way the record sounds. I just couldn't be happier.
MM: Yeah‚ it's a great sounding record.
RM: The record feels like it was just given to us‚ like we didn't even do it. That's why it was so weird. We didn't know what we were doing. The record just sort of gave birth to itself. It was a homebirth. That might be part of Joel's magic‚ you know? Joel definitely has a magic sense about him.
MM: It's part of the mystery. Like‚ you're never really sure.
RM: Oh yeah. He's an interesting guy‚ man. He's really fun to be around.
MM: So that must've been a hell of an experience‚ working with him.
RM: I really tried not to think about it too much and just sort of really relate to him in the moment‚ you know? Just stay present with him and think about who he is later. (laughter) But he and Gene treated us like equals. It was a full-on collaborative spirit. It was really beautiful‚ particularly in the mixing process. I was just astounded at how open they were to all the ideas I had. I was expecting to just be a fly on the wall and watch Gene work. But he spent the whole time asking my opinion and asking me what to do. I was just like‚ God‚ you guys are gracious for a bunch of masters.
MM: That's incredible. That's great that you got that experience.
RM: It was really something. I'll never forget that. And the studio had the four-tracks from Abbey Road.
MM: Really?!
RM: Like the actual tape decks the Beatles made all their records on were sitting there.
MM: Oh my God.
RM: That was pretty heavy. (laughter)
MM: You're like‚ whoa.
RM: Thank you! I was just looking at it just like tripping out‚ you know? 'Cause I've seen pictures of John Lennon with his little mustache leaning on it‚ drinking tea‚ and I recognized it. I'd seen it in pictures. (laughs) It was crazy.
MM: I was going back and forth with Brian about this‚ about your last record and this. I feel like it's this slowly evolving thing‚ which is obviously what you're going for in the tradition of the music that you're playing.
RM: Sure. Hopefully.
MM: I'm going back between Walking With Giants and this.
RM: Oh really? You've been playing them back to back?
MM: Yeah‚ just because I know Giants was recorded…
RM: Almost three years ago.
MM: Yeah‚ which is surprising because I only got it last year.
RM: Well‚ that's when we released it. It took us a year and a half to find the right guys to put it out.