Credit: Kate Powers

Their debut album, Twice the Speed of Life, was just certified triple platinum, and as of tonight’s CMA Awards — where Jennifer Nettles and Kristian Bush will premiere “Keep You” in a laser field — they will have performed all but two of Love on the Inside‘s songs on television: only “Take Me As I Am” and “Very Last Country Song” remain unconquered. (LotI, btw, was just certified double platinum, and is also up for CMA Album of the Year.)

So it’s time for another album cycle in Sugarland, say Bush and Nettles, who are aiming for a “summerish” release date. “We’ve already been writing,” Nettles told EW before Monday’s CMA rehearsal. “We have to go in the studio at the beginning of next year, at some point.” This is no surprise to fans who caught the live show in 2009, where they were treated to new material like “So Long” and “Take Me For A Ride,” but there’s no guarantee those songs will eventually appear on the album. “We’re not afraid to put stuff out there,” said Nettles, but Bush cautioned, “Some things just show up once in our land.” Another fan favorite, the overtly non-country groove of “Blood on Snow,” appears primed and ready for an appearance on a certain vampiric movie soundtrack. So is Twilight: Eclipse in the game plan? “Call ’em up! That’d be great!” grinned Nettles. “Just say ‘Twilight’ again!” said Bush. (Twilight.)

As they await their undead fate, the two will crank up a new tour, featuring more of their trademark theatricality. “Bigger, better, faster, more,” is how Bush described it. “We’re working on the narrative now,” said Nettles, who will divulge only that “music is a powerful healer, and the way that translates to people… I don’t want to give it away. That’s a really beautiful sentiment. But it’s more fun than that.” When asked why they refuse to just stand there and sing the hits like everybody else, Nettles replied, “Cause we’re artists as well as entertainers. We like to create not only music, but a musical experience when we’re performing live, and we like for that to have meaning, and depth, and layers, and texture beyond the songs that are happening.” Bush continued, “It matters because we’re fans of music, and I think it would matter if I was a fan of us.”

What do you think, Mixers? Do you appreciate this duo’s dedication to “meaning and depth”? Have you heard any of the new material on tour? And does a country band belong on the Twilight soundtrack? Leave it in the comments, and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @EWMusicMix!

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Photo Credit: Kate Powers/ABC

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