You guys just finished your Warped Tour run. Can you tell us a little bit about that experience?
Warped Tour was one of the craziest things we’ve ever done as a band. They call it “bootcamp for bands” and they’re totally right about that. We did not expect to work as hard, sleep as little, or have as much fun as we did. But it was totally worth it, and we’re proud of what we did while we were out there!
What were your favorite bands that played Warped Tour with you, to listen to or hang out with?
Our favorite band and the coolest dudes we met this summer was definitely The Wonder Years. They are our labelmates, but beyond that they are just some of the nicest, most generous people that we have ever met in this industry. But beyond them we met so many cool people from bands like Echosmith, Motion City Soundtrack, The Early November, Relient K, Handguns, For the Foxes, the list goes on and on. For the most part everyone is super nice and friendly.
You released “Peaks + Valleys” a couple months ago. How has the response been to this EP? Is there a full length album in the works anytime soon?
The response has been rad, we’ve already sold more copies of it than anything else we’ve ever put out and the fans we’ve met seem to really dig it. There is a full length in the works; we have an album’s worth of material we are finishing up and hope to be recording soon.
Most bands have four or five members but you guys have seven. What’s that dynamic like? Is it ever hard to get along with that many people with different personalities?
Honestly, for us, seven members seems completely normal since we’ve been together since we were 16. In fact it feels weird if we’re all together and one member isn’t around. Of course during a tour or practice personalities will clash, but we’re family, it’s not a big deal.
You’ve got some fun lyric videos for “Run,” “Let The Sun Come Up,” and “I Can See Canyons.” Whose hands are those moving all the cutout letters or putting together the Legos? How long did those take to make?
Those are our hands, we made all those videos ourselves! The “Canyons” video took about 14 hours by itself, and altogether we spent about 24 man hours making them.
You grew up in Houston and relocated to Austin. How is the music scene different there? In a city famous for live music, is there a lot of competition?
We were in Houston for about two years during our high school years so the scene there was really close knit and very talented for the ages of everyone playing back then. We’ve now be in Austin for almost a decade, and its different. If there is a “scene” here we’re definitely not a part of it, and it is extremely competitive. We’ve been able to carve out our own little space in this market and are happy with the friends and fans we have here.
What’s the best part of being in a band? What’s the worst part?
The best part of being in a band is creating something that forms connections with strangers all over the world. Going to a city you’ve never been to in your life and having people sing back your words is extremely surreal and never gets old. The worst part is the business side of it: money, debt, being poor, ha ha ha.
What bands would you say are your biggest influences?
In no particular order, a few of the big ones would be: Taking Back Sunday, Saves The Day, Motion City Soundtrack, Brand New, The Anniversary.
If you weren’t in a band, what would you be doing?
Well most of us have careers outside of the band, so for example I’m currently an instructor and PhD student at the University of Texas, so I’d probably just keep doing that.
It sounds like you guys have had a busy summer. What are your plans as a band for the rest of the year?
We have plans to tour, tour, and tour some more. Also, find a producer and prepare to hit the studio to record a full length! And also to have a very merry Christmas.
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