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Crowded House singer Neil Finn talks recording new album under Covid-19 lockdown

Crowded House frontman Neil Finn said the band were "having a ball" while recording a new album while under Covid-19 lockdown in the US. 

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Finn joined Breakfast this morning following the band's announcement of a 10-day tour next March. Source: Breakfast

The iconic rock band behind classic hits Don't Dream It's Over and Better Be Home Soon returned to New Zealand one month ago, after recording a new album - which began before the Covid-19 lockdown - in Los Feliz, Los Angeles.

Crowded House will be performing shows at 10 different cities across the country next March.

It follows the release of the band's first new single in more than a decade with the debut of Whatever You Want.

“We were making an album, we were remote, Pro Tools studios in everybody’s house and sending files to each other on Zoom,” Finn explained on TVNZ's Breakfast this morning.

“We mix by Zoom - our mixer was giving us the music in real time - and we were all there, sort of chatting away, daily two-hour session in the morning and having a ball, actually,” Finn said. “It worked well.”

He said honouring the band’s legacy has meant he has not been in the band in recent years, choosing instead to tour with American classic rock giants Fleetwood Mac as the replacement for vocalist Lindsey Buckingham.

“I take it very seriously and it’s why I haven’t been in Crowded House all these years, ‘cause there were times I didn’t feel it in my heart, basically.”

Finn said coming off the back of a Fleetwood Mac tour where he “really connected with that feeling of a classic band and how real it was onstage” made him realise he had his own “experience of that classic band with a long history and songs that young people are connecting with”.

“I had a real sense of occasion about getting it back in a new form that felt like it had a chance to move forward,” he said.

He said that was what led to changes in the lineup, with his sons Liam and Elroy joining longtime friend and collaborator Nick Seymour, and original producer Mitchell Froom.

"We play together like family and there’s no replacing them."

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Coming home: Crowded House to perform at 10 New Zealand cities next year

Finn said there is still a sense of joy wonder in stepping out on stage.

"The sense of joy of an audience singing your music back to you in a live setting is unparalleled and I'm still fascinated by it,” he said.

“It compels me to try and write better songs every time."

He added that New Zealand has a "buoyant spirit" and "deserves to enjoy a really golden summer".

Crowded House album Dreamers Are Waiting is expected to be released next year.