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Their story here is a little bit different from their success back home where they're from in the UK. Let's just say they are bigger than life! They came off a completely sold out headlining tour featuring We The Kings and Forever The Sickest Kids as their openers and come here to watch the former play the main stage every day to at least 3,000 kids per show. The boys aren't giving up the chase any time soon though to try and gain the same level of success here and I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to talk to front man Josh Franceschi and rhythm guitarist Max Helyer about everything from their challenges in spreading their music to the US and how Warped tour was going for them!
So coming from the UK and actually being on your second time on Warped Tour in a row which is really exciting, how is it going the second time around?
Josh: It's been a lot different since we're on a much bigger stage. We're playing to more people. I feel like there's more awareness of our band over here now then there was the first time we came to America. We did a tour in the fall with Mayday Parade and The Academy Is and Set Your Goals and that kind of really helped kind of starting things up here.
Max: We've also got a new CD which came out the other week so I think kids are kind of aware of it and there's people who haven't heard of our band before who are checking us out live and it's been a lot of help for us promoting the new CD.
And it's coming out in a few weeks or it's 'Hold Me Down'?
Max: Yeah 'Hold Me Down' came out two or three weeks ago on Virgin. It's kind of nice to back over here touring like new stuff because when we were back over here last playing older songs and now we're playing like the current songs that we like to play so it's fun to come back over especially playing these songs.
Then I know you headlined a tour back home in the UK and you had We The Kings opening and Forever The Sickest kids I believe?
Josh: Yeah Forever The Sickest kids opened and We The Kings were main support.
How is it to come here then? You guys are growing things here but back home in the UK it's at a much bigger level, yeah?
Max: Yeah. I think we know like it's going to be tough when we come out to America because we haven't toured as much here for those fans but that's the whole point of us being here right now. Like touring as much as we can. I think next year is going to be another target as well where we want to be over a lot more and touring a lot more so hopefully we can just nail it down.
Josh: I think ultimately like our band's ethos has always been about like wanting to take an audience who maybe a. haven't heard of us or b. doesn't like us and get them. That's what we've always been about. I feel like it's great what we have in the UK. It's obviously phenomenal and we're very lucky but like we want that everywhere. We don't want to be a band that just sticks to one place so we're going to keep coming back here as much as we can and it's not about getting massive or making lots of money, it's about seeing that more and more people are coming. We haven't played main stage at Warped Tour or close the day like We The Kings or whatever you know. Maybe that will never happen but you know we want to give it a chance. I guess we'll see what happens.
Max: It's about just enjoying our time here with our best mates as well. I mean that's why we started up this band so to even be here on Warped Tour we feel privileged to be here.
Then where can kids find you this summer? Like what stage are you playing?
Josh: We're playing Altec Lansing stage.
Oh wow, that's definitely a big stage! Like Hey Monday, Four Year Strong, etc.
Max: Some of our best friends are on that stage this year. So it's really nice to be on the stage and we can watch our friends play and not clash with them.
Josh: That's the best part. I realized like that's the best part of being on this stage is that like realistically the only bands we really want to avoid clashing with are All American Rejects and We The Kings. I guess Bring Me The Horizon but I sing a song with them so we don't normally clash and it works. Clashing with a band like Four Year Strong would really suck but we don't have to worry about that.
Then what's one of the crazier things so far this summer that's happened? Maybe at one of your sets, at some one else's? I just heard about some girls taking all their clothes off at the Rejects?
Josh: Oh yeah he's funny. We saw him the other day when they were playing. Some of the stuff he was saying was pretty jokes. At one of our shows though? It's really all becoming a blur, it's been so long.
It's only been a few weeks!
Max: Warped tour is so routine! You get into this like Warped tour zone.
Josh: We were watching Parkway Drive the other day and like Winston the lead singer was like I want to see people start head walking and it was like this massive crowd. All you see is these people getting on everyone's shoulders climbing across the thing. I thought it was pretty nuts!
Max: I think the best crowd we've had was actually in Toronto. Toronto two days ago like was insane. We've been there before on the AP tour and I think the kids really got our band then and like a lot of the kids were singing along to the newer songs and it was really like a promising sight to see that people had picked up the cd and had checked it out. Hopefully they can happen everywhere in Canada and the USA as well.
Then what are the plans for the next few months? Obviously the CD just came out in the US, I think it's been out for a while in the UK but what are the plans? Are you guys going to be coming back to the USA, what's going to be going on?
Josh: Yeah we're in discussions about various tours. We were going to come back in the fall but it's looking pretty unlikely now because we've got some commitments in the UK and Europe we've got to do but we plan to come back in the spring.
Max: We hope to come back next year and for a lot longer time, not just two months. You never know, we might wait and record another CD. You never know.