So guess what guys! This is a hella big deal! I’m interviewing American Standards, but, I didn’t have to email them first, this is the first time a group emailed me! SQUEE!!! I am also reviewing their recent Album Anti-Melody! I hope you all are as excited as I am for this new thing that I’m doing.
Question 1:) What was it like recording Anti-Melody?
Recording Anti-Melody was a new experience for us. Not only were we recording out of state but we were also at a well known and respected studio, Kingsize Soundlabs. In the past we had always tracked back home in Arizona at more independent studios.
Question 2.) Do you have any funny stories about being in the studio?
I think there were times that we got a little overly ambitious with our musical experimentation. It started with simple stuff like adding keys and strings. It quickly escalated to auto-tuning a harmonica and using a snake rattle and then by the end Corey was literally crunching a bag of chips into a microphone.
Question 3.) What was the hardest thing about recording Anti-Melody?
Recording out of state and all the travel it required became challenging but it also forced us to really dedicate that time to the recording process without distraction.
Question 4.) What was your favorite song to write off Anti-Melody?
Each song had their own moments. I loved the organic feel of writing “Carpe Diem, Tomorrow” and “Danger Music #9” but it was also fun to experiment with different instruments and tones in songs like “Bartenders Without Wings”.
Question 5.) Did anyone cry recording Anti-Melody? The instrumental intro to Bartenders without Wings ALMOST made me cry.
If we did, we wouldn’t admit to it. Kidding. Some of the songs definitely bevame emotional taxing. Both “Cancer Eater” about my father and “Chicago Overcoat” about Cody’s suicide come to mind. I actually didn’t realize until we got the first mix that a lot of the room noise is captured at the end of the song and I think it kind of captures some of the feeling.
Question 6.) Here’s a question that is less focused on the album and more on the pain of losing people who are close to you, do you have any suggestions on how to handle that kind of thing?
When someone close to you passes it’s easy to think about the loss and the sadness that it brings. It’s important to channel that emotion into something productive though whether it be art or another hobby. Let the experience bring something positive into this world for you or those around you because your loved one surely wouldn’t want it any other way. The pain will never fully go away but time will bring a new perspective.
Question 7.) What instrument took the longest to record?
Drums are always a beast to prep for between set up, mic’ing and finding the right tones. We’re still old school in that regard whereas many bands in our genre are triggering drums or using electronic drums altogether. I think vocals also took quite a bit because I’m never content with what I’m doing and will track into oblivion.
Question 8.) Were there more songs you could have put on the album? I kinda wish it was longer. If so, would you consider making a second part to it?
There were a couple songs we had written for the album that didn’t make it. Partially from time and money constraints but also just due to their overall tone. We didn’t want to force anything onto the album that didn’t fit naturally. I think you’ll hear some of that progression on the next release though.
Question 9.) Did you have a game plan for Anti-Melody when you were going into the studio, or did you just go off the top of your head?
We went into it with most songs at 80%. The other 20% came from experimentation in the studio.
Question 10.) Which one of the songs from Anti-Melody hit the hardest emotionly when writing?
For me, “Cancer Eater” hits the closest to home. It’s about my father being diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. He literally worked until the day he was diagnosed and was taken just weeks later. The memory of those last few hours in the hospital with him replay themselves in my mind and I often get caught up on stuff like a letter and birthday gift I had brought to him in the hospital that he never had to opportunity to open or read.
Question 11.) Is your favorite song to record your favorite song to play live?
If not, what is it?
My favorite song often depends on my mood. One that we don’t play live often but I really love is “Churchburner”. I think the message behind it is relevant now more than ever.
Question 12.) When do you guys plan on making another album?
We’re currently writing for the next release which will hopefully be ready in early 2018. With the release we plan to announce one of the biggest changes that we’ve had in quite some time. Something that will likely play a key part in both the sound and direction for the band.
Anti-Melody is a very loud, yet emotional album. Some people don’t really like unclean vocals, more well known as screaming, every song has unclean vocals so if you’re not into those vocals I would not recommend this album to you. If you do like unclean vocals, or you don’t care and just listen for the instrumentals or for the emotion, the FUCK YEAH listen to this Album. Personally, I’m not SUPER into unclean vocals, but I really enjoyed this album. It was very emotionally driven and that’s one of the most important things to me. The Instrumentals were amazing too. I’m a drum person so of course I’m going to say that the drums were my favorite out of the instruments, but I actually really liked the vocals even though like I said earlier I’m not one for unclean vocals (Yes your voice counts as an instrument had you going didn’t I though?). If you’re unaware of the background of the album, the band and the singer lost some very important people to them. So it is a very sad album. If you are very emotional, like me, I’m a HUGE pussy, listen with caution. LISTEN TO IT! But with caution. If you’re not emotional, still listen to it. Over all I give this album a 8 out of 10 because like I said I’m not much for screaming, and I’m jealous of anyone who can scream.
My Favorite Song: Bartenders Without Wings