Above: Civil Twilight will perform at the Levitt Pavilion at 8 p.m, Saturday, Aug. 27.
It’s well past twilight when Richard Wouters is reached by phone, on break from creating the music that will become Civil Twilight’s second album.
“We are about four weeks into it,” he says of the work being done at a New York City recording studio.
The band’s first, self-titled album was released in 2009, several years after the band moved to the United States, after forming in a suburb outside of Cape Town, South Africa, where the three members grew up.
The band, in addition to Wouters, who plays drums, includes brothers Steven (vocals, bass, piano and keyboards) and Andrew McKellar (guitar). The trio will be coming to Westport’s Levitt Pavilion on Saturday, Aug. 27, at 8 p.m.
Their performance falls on the last weekend of the music venue’s 38th summer season, which offers free entertainment most evenings, including Saturday’s performance.
“We’ve been touring America for about a year-and-a-half,” Wouters said, noting that the band got its first shot at headlining earlier this year. “We really like it in the States … we are grateful to be able to make our music. We want to make the best record we can. We are excited about it.”
Still, there is nothing like going home. Wouters said excitement was high among the audiences that turned out in December when the band returned to South Africa to put on a few shows.
“They wanted to see us and are excited about how we are doing,” he said.
The three musicians first started playing music 14 years ago, when they were in their early teens. They grew up listening to American music, including such bands as Pearl Jam, Nirvana and The Strokes, as well as bands hailing from the U.K., including U2, the Police, Oasis and Verve.
While such influence can be heard in their music, the band brings their own distinct influences and inspirations to the music, through Steven McKellar’s lyrics and his bandmates sonic collaborations.
When not on the road, the band makes its home in Nashville, but Wouters said there is an energy in New York City that can inspire much creativity.
“It is a pretty amazing place,” he said. “The energy is really unique. I’ve never been to any other place like it.”
In fact, the band’s journey across the United States over the past year or two has definitely colored the music they are now making, Wouters said.
“As a musician, you have to progress in a sense, you can’t keep making the same record over and over again,” he said. “This is stuff we haven’t done before, and that is exciting. It keeps it fresh.”