"The project places the talents of the two artists in perfect harmonyâ¦" – The Los Angeles Times
"Aimee Mann and Ted Leo have combined their eloquent, slightly off-kilter songwriting powersâ¦" – SPIN
"Coupled with Mann’s gift for a pop melody and Leo’s penchant for spiky, urgent guitars, the end result is a best-of-both-worlds situation." – Boston Globe
The Both is a collaborative project from critically acclaimed musicians Aimee Mann and Ted Leo. Building on a friendship forged while they were on tour together last year, it was Leo’s solo sets that piqued Mann’s interest in getting on stage with him and writing music together. Of the project, Mann notes, "Honestly, I feel like for the first time, I’m part of a rock band."
The band’s all original songs were written as back-and-forth collaborations between Mann and Leo. With their differing musical vocabularies and mutual admiration for one another, the duo found working together to be a boon. "We were just like ‘Fuck it, let’s push and make it happen,’" notes Mann. "You really just have to go, ‘You know what, I have to trust that this other person’s instincts are good.’" Leo furthers, "I think as Aimee and I have gotten closer, we have realized how much in common we have and how much respect we have for what the other person does and what they’re bringing to the table. The writing process has largely been long distance, but it’s been line by line, verse by verse, part by part; we’ll send each other something and go back and forth until it’s finished." The album was recorded in Los Angeles with Ryan Freeland, between stretches of touring in 2013, and produced by Mann’s longtime friend and band member Paul Bryan.