Their success since the release of their 2007 album Boxer has bred a measure of confidence for Brooklyn-based band The National.
Vocalist Matt Berninger and brothers Aaron and Bryce Dessner and Scott and Bryan Devendorf met in Cincinnati and formed a band in 1999 before moving to Brooklyn.
With their sixth record, Trouble Will Find Me, released in May, everyone is developing a more relaxed approach. Berninger said he believes he has "let his guard down" in this record more than any other.
"For a long period in our career we had no attention at all, then we started getting a little attention so I think we were desperate to keep a little of that. So every record, we felt like there was a lot of pressure, we don’t want to blow it now," Berninger said in an interview with CBC’s Q cultural affairs show.
"That served us well, that kind of hunger. In the making of this record, I think we stopped thinking about that – it doesn’t help you write good songs. I think you can hear the easygoing vibe a little bit more in this record," he said.
When The National was touring in support of 2010’s High Violet, Berninger’s brother Tom accompanied them to make a documentary.
Berninger shares the discomfort of being part of the doc Mistaken For Strangers in his Q interview.
But bandmate Aaron Dessner says members naturally opened up to the gregarious Tom and that helped create a more fun-loving image for the band.
"We do often get portrayed as brooding rockers, which is actually not how we actually are," he said.
The National played two songs from their album in the Q studio.