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How has this co-headliner been going with Chiodos? Obviously too Spencer (Chamberlain, ex Underoath vocalist, current Sleepwave vocalist) who's been around forever and Jonny who's been around forever. How has this tour been with their new bands coming out and everything?
It's been cool! I mean this is day three so we're officially like halfway done. I mean it's really short. We played Baltimore yesterday, three days ago now we played our like hometown show. So I mean it's been cool. Been a lot of fun. Yeah it's just a short little run before Christmas. We haven't toured since the beginning of October was when our last headliner ended. We've taken off a ton of time to write and keep writing. That's really all we've been doing. So we're like oh we have a week open right now in December. Let's go on a little tour for Christmas. So I can buy my family something besides like socks and bad Christmas presents. Even though I actually like getting socks for Christmas. Now that I'm twenty five, I'm like yes socks! So I mean that's kind of what we've been up to. It was really awkward yesterday. I was getting my stage clothes. The tour manager/merch guy for Sleepwave. His name's Brendan. He's actually a photographer but he's a good friend of mine and before the show started, I went over there and grabbed a Sleepwave shirt. So I was changing into the shirt. Put it on and turned around and Spencer walked into our green room and I'm like 'Hey this is not completely embarrassing and weird at all". I'm wearing your t-shirt. It's fine!
Maybe how has that experience been considering Underoath was a band for so long.
Yeah I mean I personally really, really like the new Sleepwave CD and so I was like stoked to be on tour with them because I was just like this is an awesome CD. It's completely different and I'm really happy about it. Pretty stoked on it. I was watching their sound check earlier. That's how much I liked it (laughs). Actually one of our old drum techs, his name's Tai, he plays drums in Slaves. We toured together for two years, like him working for us and now he's in a band. So it's cool to be on tour with him again. Got a lot of old jokes. Probably nothing that I can publicly say. Make some fans question our sanity.
They already do. It's okay!
They probably do already do. I just downloaded Snapchat yesterday for the first time ever. I was like whatever I'm bored. Brutally bored and so I like posted on Twitter. A bunch of fans started sending me snapchats and I just responded to all of them with like a picture of the ground and then I would draw a cat and I'd just send it. It didn't matter what it was. I thought it was hilarious. I'm a little quirky I guess. Losing my mind out here.
Then I know obviously you have a large hand in writing for this band. Something I don't think most people realize but you said you were taking off time to write. Is it forming into an album just yet or do you think it's still kind of the ideas phase?
No it's been awesome because of all our previous CD's we wrote primarily on the road. I mean the first two CD's we wrote completely entirely on the road. Then "Tracing Back Roots" was about seventy percent written on the road. Maybe sixty percent written on the road. So it's been nice to like not be on tour and be able to like write and concentrate on something. Instead of setting aside fifty percent of your time touring and fifty percent writing. Where it's now 100% to writing and it's coming out way nicer then any other method. I hope that we never have to write on the road again. To be able to have time off and write. It is so much better. It is so much less stressed and I think it's coming out awesome. I mean at least I'm going to like it. We'll put it out and every kid's going to be like 'I want more break downs!' That was a high pitched voice.
That was really good.
Make a note of that. I mean everything that we're writing, we're all like super stoked on it. We're all ready to put it out. It won't come out for months. It's been great. Just having time to like dedicate for that. For the first time in our band's almost ten year career.
That is crazy to think about.
I'm an old man at twenty five.
I was thinking about that the other day. I've been interviewing you and others for like five years and it flew by. It's crazy.
It's been a while. It has been a while. Let's see. Yeah we released "To Plant A Seed" at the end of 2009. So that's just so long. I remember when we were recording our EP, I turned 19 while we were in the studio. We only had six days to do four songs. So we were working like twelve hour days in this little garage with Joey Sturgis. It was like it's my birthday and I turn 19 at midnight and the guys went to like the gas station because it was like this really small town in rural Indiana. So the guys went to like a gas station and brought back cupcakes and I was like oh thanks so much. It's too bad I hate chocolate cupcakes so they just ate all my birthday cupcakes and that was that! That was a long time ago. Six years ago now.
That's crazy. Then maybe speaking of the writing, has it changed? Stylistically, is it pretty similar to what you've always done?
I mean it's definitely changed. I feel like we've done a pretty good job at putting out different CD's. To me, there's a big difference between "To Plant A Seed" and "Understanding". Especially like lyrically. Massive difference. Maybe not so much musically but between "Tracing Back Roots" and "Understanding" it's huge. Then this next CD will be different. It will always be different because I mean as normal music listeners and normal people that we all are. Our music tastes change. What we want to play changes and what we listen to for enjoyment changes. So what we end up writing is always changing. I think it's fun. I like it. I think it makes it interesting as opposed to just putting out the same CD over and over and over again. I mean there are always going to be the kids that call for more breakdowns but unfortunately for them, we are the kind of band that wants to write and play music that we want. If other people like it, then that's great. If they don't, well then I don't know. We don't want to write songs that are just out there to like make other people happy and we're on stage miserable. When we wrote "To Plant A Seed", we loved all of those songs and now still playing them on stage six years later, I'm like this is so boring. I have literally probably played this song a thousand times.
Yeah! If it gets that way with songs that you love, imagine how it would get if it was a song that you didn't like and you just put it out to try and make other people happy. To try and sell some singles. To try to do whatever. You would be miserable and you can definitely tell. So yeah, we don't do that. We like the stuff we play.
That's always good! Then I wanted to end with it this. I wanted to bring it back to like the first time we interviewed you . A lot of those bands that were on tour with you then have all seen member changes as well as plenty of other bands but you guys have maintained the exact same lineup. From when you started this band.
Yeah it's been the same since our EP. We picked up Kyle like three months before we recorded it. So I guess that would be five months before we put it out. Eight months before we signed. Timelines. All that stuff, yeah. So it's been a while. The same six guys which is something.
Yeah! I mean as well as interviewing you and this genre, I also you know do interview pop rock bands for the same amount of time like The Maine, The Summer Set, bands you do Warped with who have also maintained same line ups. Maybe advice to bands to try to do that? To pull through this together?
I mean if you can stick together as a band, then that's awesome but at the same time I mean if you're not happy, make changes. Why would you waste your time knowing that you're going to be unhappy. Like oh I have a month long tour coming up and these two guys don't get along and I don't get along with this guy. So okay I'm just going to go spend a month and not be happy. It's just a waste of time. I don't think that there's anything wrong with bands having member changes. Just because if both parties aren't happy, change something to be happy. I mean it might not always be the cleanest or most happy moment when it happens but it's much better then wasting your time. Like expecting something to change that won't. But at the same time, I don't think that's it right that you get in one fight with a band member and you're like kick this guy out! That doesn't happen but if that were to happen, then my band would have none of the same members. I wouldn't be here doing this interview because this band is family. You fight. There are times when you hate each other but you always love each other. It's a weird thing. As much as I talk about what my band does, it's like every band is different. Every family is different. So what I say makes a lot of sense to me and my band but probably makes not a lot of sense to some one else in another band somewhere because that's a whole different dynamic. It works for us. I roll with it because that's the only band I got.