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Backstage at Bumbershoot: the Shins

Following the quartet’s midday performance Saturday (Sept. 2) beneath Seattle’s Space Needle at Bumbershoot’s main stage, James Mercer, the frontman and creative force behind indie darling the Shins, slipped out of his dapper couture, snuggled up in some Target-bought shorts and sat down with backstage for a brief chat. Touching upon their seemingly endless touring schedule since the release of chart-topping opus Wincing the Night Away, Mercer divulges the Shins’ forthcoming plans — a U.S. tour, and a little down time — a tentative record, and his hometown’s creatively nurturing environs: “… One of the cool things about Portland, your social life gets sort of intertwined with the whole thing, the shows and the things that you do … if you want to start a band, I can’t imagine moving to Williamsburg.”