When Stéphane Schück, principal songwriter and guitarist of the Paris-based band Salt, became ill during the recording sessions for the group's 2023 album, his bandmates and their Chapel Hill-based producer and performer Chris Stamey needed to improvise.
Stamey said they reached out around the world, and the 12 resulting tracks on the group's newest album "Life" were recorded in Paris, Chapel Hill and Kernersville, N.C.
The album — billed under a new group name: The Salt Collective— blends power pop and alternative rock sounds and combines the voices of American and international artists to celebrate the record's namesake.
“I also mixed the record, which I took all these different parts from around the world, and made them combine to a sonic picture that seemed appropriate and coherent,” Stamey said.
On Jan. 17, The Salt Collective will kick off their American tour at Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro. The tour will feature Stéphane Schück and Fred Quentin from Salt, and Stamey as well as artists from other N.C.-based bands and beyond.
Stamey said it was good luck to start their tour at Cat’s Cradle, as a number of the collective live nearby and can meet to rehearse.
“The Cat’s Cradle venue has been a boon to the university and the area in general for many decades now,” Stamey said.
The album's Chapel Hill label, Propeller Sound Recordings, was co-founded by Jay Coyle and Jefferson Holt in 2021. The label provides services in management and consulting and works directly with their roster of artists under one umbrella.
Coyle said The Salt Collective was truly the sum of all its parts. He said he could distinguish the people performing and felt as though they got in a room together and created each track, even though they recorded from home studios.