Alt Bloom Brings Us Vibes With “West Coast”

Offering the perfect vibes for windows-down cruising through LA, Alt Bloom’s newest single “West Coast” definitely needs to be put on your Chill playlist this year! We got a chance to catch up with him between his traveling and music-making to learn what went into producing “West Coast.”

Hi Ethan! Thanks for talking to us today. Congrats on your new single by the way! “West Coast” is definitely in our vibes playlist here at MDRN. We have a question we want to ask first. We noticed you’re traveling quite a bit recently, where are you at this very moment?

Hello! Thank you so much for taking the time to talk about my project! I have been traveling but currently am back in LA. For the last 10 days I’ve been doing live acoustic videos for each song on my EP across national parks in California. It was a blast of an experience and I can’t wait to share it!

Are the sights and places you’re visiting inspiring you to write new music? If so, how is it inspiring differently than other writing sessions?

I’d say stepping out of the studio always inspires new music. Living life is the only way to find new material and honest stories to write about. Being outdoors and out of LA keeps me in my own space artistically and makes me realize how vast the universe is which reminds me to keep on my path as we are all making it up on this little dot in space. 

Now on to your new single, which is honestly so amazing. What about the west coast inspired this song? A person, a moment, a sight? 

Thank you so much! Lyrics for me are always something that is bursting to be realized in my life and I just let them flow. “West Coast” is in that vein. But what really inspired the song was my roommate and producer Devin Damato. I was about to leave the house on a trip and heard him working on a track. The groove caught me and I started hearing the chorus melody and lyric right away. So I popped my head in his room and asked if I could write over what he was working on. About 20 minutes later the whole thing was written. I recorded a voice memo of it and when I got back from the trip, myself, Brian Phillips (producer), and Devin hopped in the studio and finished out the recording. 

Your “October Eyes” video and “Stay” lyric video have some amazing visuals and really catch the feel of the song? What can we expect for the “West Coast” music video? We hope there’s a lot of driving with the roof down.

Thank you! For the “West Coast” video we wanted to capture parts of LA that people who don’t live here don’t recognize but locals see all the time. LA river, Crenshaw, downtown, etc… It’s funny the original idea was to be driving in all the locations but the director, Erica Eng, knows that I am a big longboarder so she suggested I do that for the video instead to ground it to who I am. It ended up being a blast of a day just doing two things I love to do, sight see and skate. 


alt bloom west coast

If you had to put “West Coast” in a vibes playlist, what other songs would you include? Can be more of your own, as well as other artists? What would you call that playlist?

Biking” Frank Ocean, “Morning” Marc E Bassy, “Habit” Still Woozy, “Small Worlds” Mac Miller, “Make It Better” Anderson Paak. I’d call it PB and Jam.


What is your usual method of attack when writing music? Do you have a certain order you like to work in? 

I usually like to start with a palette of chord and groove. Whether it’s in my head or on a seed track. That helps me dive into a flow. Writing for me is a zen space. When I am in it I am in it 100%, committed to whatever the next few hours hold. It’s a ride every time. After that initial burst the song is either done or I spend the rest of the day or months putting the rest of the pieces together like a sudoku puzzle with a producer. 

Is there a specific line or lyric that you wrote that you are super proud of? Which one? 

In “West Coast” there’s a lyric, “Got a firework face, light up the whole place.” Not sure why I like that line, probably because I’ve only met a few people who can take out a room with a look and it reminds me of them when I sing it. 

If you don’t mind, we’d like to get a bit deep. What made you create Alt Bloom? We know that it’s your stage name. Is Alt Bloom a completely different version of you? Or is he an extension of yourself?

Alt Bloom was a new step for me. I had so many things associated with my name that I wanted a fresh start. And I didn’t want the pressure of anything I had done before to fall on this new place for me. I wanted to feel free to take this music wherever my heart wanted to, folk, hiphop, pop, rnb, rock, and by switching my name it gave me that space to let go of whatever had been holding me back from doing just that. 


We’re dying to know, do you have an album or EP in the works?

Right now there is so much music I have in the stash but the first step for me is an EP which we do have done and are planning to release a track at a time. Just waiting on those mixes ! An album for sure in the future, but for now I want to keep releases to EP’s so I can keep releasing at a quick pace. 


Since you love traveling so much? Can we expect a tour soon?

As soon as I can get out I will! Right now the focus is building and making the music I will be touring on. I’m hoping to get out a bunch this year and am keeping my fingers crossed for the opportunity. I do love traveling and singing. Especially if I can find new nature spots to explore and climb. On top of that the band is gonna be a kick to play with! Good people. 

What is your take on the MDRN day fan and how important they are to the industry right now?

Fans are everything. Without fans there isn’t an industry. Everything great that happens in this world takes a lot of people. Every success is do to the fact that masses are involved. DaVinci wouldn’t be remembered if millions of people didn’t reflect on and save his work. Even NASA wouldn’t be able to explore the worlds beyond without tax dollars from the masses. Every success is more that of the people and less the person. Though a person can stimulate the people it is the people that make the music connection so special. 

What can Alt Bloom fans look forward to in 2020?

Lots of new music, lots of new visuals, lots of new places to explore, live shows and a presidential election.

Okay last question and it’s an important one… What do you call your fanbase? If you don’t have one yet, what would you like them to be called? (May we suggest Bloomers?)

Haha bloomers sounds a lot like boomers I’d have to be careful. We actually call ourselves tribe. Tribe means a lot to me because it’s a heavy part in human existence, finding your tribe. My base is about connecting with each other and I love to watch them slowly growing as this project begins. It’s only really been six months !

Thank you for talking with us, Ethan! MDRN Mag wishes you the best luck! We can’t wait for all the new music! If there’s any last things you’d like to tell the fans, please do!

Thank you so much for taking the time. I’d like to tell people to get outside anyway you can. Staring at the stars, some trees, and getting fresh air does so much more the soul than any other thing in this world. Get out tribe!

Take a look at the video for “West Coast” below!

Alt Bloom
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Words: Jace Chiappetta | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Hello PR

30 Talks New Single “Met Too Young”

30

Getting ready for the new year, 30 is back with another single, “Met Too Young,” that he dropped earlier this month, and we go the chance to talk to him about his music journey, touring and what’s to come in 2020!

Hi 30, thanks so much for talking with us! And just to give our readers a little bit more information on you, can you tell us how you got started in music?

For sure! I started off writing. Before I wrote songs I wrote short stories or poems. I was probably like five or six. I remember writing my mom a book of poems. Then I started getting more and more into music, so I kept writing and finally got a chance to record. I’ve done it every day since then.

How does it feel to have thousands of monthly Spotify listeners and knowing fans are connecting with the music?

It’s so dope. You spend years and years where basically no one is hearing what you’ve spent hours working on, and then finally people start paying attention. My first dream was to make someone’s favorite song. To have people DM me telling me that every day is so rewarding. I gotta focus on appreciating that more though… I’m constantly focusing on what’s next.

Your music crosses a few genres to create your unique sound, if you had to describe your sound to someone who hasn’t heard your music what would you say?

I always say it’s a fusion of Hip-Hop, Alternative, and Pop. It’s definitely hard to describe, especially cause one song you hear from me could be 100% Hip-Hop and another could be me singing the whole time. But yeah, it’s just a fusion. I’m pretty versatile I like to think.

Congrats on your newest single, “Met Too Young,” where’d you get the inspiration for this track?

Thank you! It’s about a girl that I had a relationship with. Everything felt so right and we were so into each other, but being at our age we were just in two very different places in our life. Distance was a factor, music was a factor, just everything all at once. So I felt like I met the right girl at the wrong time in my life.

How has this track differed from some of your previous singles?

It’s so pop. Even EDM leaning. I’ve never done anything like it. But that’s what I’m saying… If I feel like I can do it, then I will.

We heard you spent earlier this year on tour with Futuristic and Gianni & Kyle, what’s your favorite part of being on tour?

Just getting to play in front of new crowds. My favorite place to be is in the studio or on stage. Also seeing cities I’ve never been to is so nuts. It makes me really sit back and appreciate that music has taken me here.

Photo: Big Picture Media

Any city you stopped in that you can’t wait to get back to? Any place you can’t wait to perform in?

I always love playing in Boston. It was the first city I ever played in, and it’s always dope going back. Next time I go back I want to headline and sell it out though.

Do you have any tours or shows coming up?

For sure! We’re working on getting a whole new schedule ready for 2020. I also just sold out my first show in my hometown which is so crazy. That’s on Saturday.

What can fans look forward too?

Lots and lots of new music. More shows, merch. We’re taking it to a new level. 

What do you think is different from MDRN day fans and fans from earlier decades? 

I think smaller artists have much more of a lane now. It’s dope cause with home studios and independent distribution, artists can get themselves poppin on their own. So in terms of fans, I think they really love having smaller artists that they’re into and can support. I’m so grateful for my little core of fans that are showing love. 

30
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Words: Mar Maldonado | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Big Picture Media

MIDFIELD Nails Every Little Thing With New Single

MIDFIELD

There’s something magical about Philadelphia and pop-punk bands and this time is no different. Coming right from the city of brotherly love, MIDFIELD brings us “Every Little Thing” as a brand new single. A perfect-for-spooky-season video accompanies the single drop!

In a fun, upbeat track that tackles toxic relationships and finally moving on from something so negative. Doing what pop-punk does so well and pairing happy melodies with tough topics, MIDFIELD nails the formula and has us wanting to jump in a sweaty crowd while “Every Little Thing” goes off on the stage before us.

The video features many nods to popular horror movies, dropped just in time for Halloween. There’s a certain level of comedy within the scenes and my favorite part is the use of their own merch. We love the representation!

Check out our chat with the guys below as we explore new songs, old songs, and what the future holds. There’s also a pretty solid joke regarding sports-themed band names.

1. So for those who don’t know, you guys originated in Philadelphia, correct? It’s quite an active pop-punk scene there. What kind of influence, good or bad, has it had on the music you create?
Tyler: Yes, it has totally had a positive influence on the music we create. There’s a ton of awesome local bands in the scene. Plus there are so many big touring bands that come through Philly on a weekly basis, so going to shows and staying active in the scene definitely influences us.

2. You have been a local sensation since 2016. What is the defining moment that you would say brought you on to the larger scale scene?
Kurt: Definitely the release of our E.P. Happy Thoughts and the campaign behind it. Before that we had no music videos, and only a 3 song E.P. (Wishing, Wanting) on Spotify. So the addition of 5 new songs and 2 music videos really helped us expand on a bigger scale. 

3. You’re about to release a brand new track titled “Every Little Thing”. Can you tell us about that song? What is the inspiration behind it?
Kurt: Yeah so, when I’m coming up with songs or lyrics I’ll typically just brainstorm melodies or lines I think can sound cool and engaging then try to adapt that to a feeling theme or thought. 

The first line I got for this song was actually the opening line “My self-esteem is lower than your morals”. The song pretty quickly expanded from there. I wanted to hone the feeling of being put down by a toxic relationship in any regard, not just romantic, but one that you keep going back to for whatever reason. Something I’d imagine is pretty relatable for a lot of people. But I wanted to end it with a breakthrough moment and feeling of closure and growth, and kind of a diss I guess, so we have the ending group chant of “You’re nothing, nothing at all”. 

4. Your single “Casper” is available now for streaming. Were there many differences between the writing process of this track and “Every Little Thing”?
Tyler: Yeah it was totally a different process. “Casper” started out as a rhythm guitar track that I had for a while and decided to bring it to the band so see if we could use it. I recorded the drums to a scratch track of the guitar. Then Matt worked on lyrics for it and wrote a melody. Wes wrote the bass track and the guitar parts for the bridge. Then PJ recorded his leads parts and it was basically a wrap.

Matt: Yeah, “Casper” had a pretty interesting process because Tyler had basically the whole song ready to go when he showed it to us, but with no lyrics or theme for what he wanted the song to be about. So it was a cool experience kind of letting the music guide me and I think what came out of that was pretty powerful.

Tyler: “Every Little Thing” is a bit different because Kurt had the rhythm guitar, lyrics, and vocal melody all worked out before approaching the rest of the band. We workshopped it and wrote the rest of the parts and went to the studio to get it recorded.

5. The music video drops October 4th, which is just in time for Halloween. Did that inspire the theme of the video? Are you all big fans of spooky stuff?
Tyler:
I don’t know about the rest of the dudes, but Halloween is my favorite holiday so I’m definitely a fan of anything spooky.

Matt: I am definitely the biggest horror / spooky one of the group. Tim Burton and David Lynch are my two biggest influences. I was actually the one who came up with the idea, but it didn’t really fit the vibe for how dark I wanted it. We aren’t really that type of band but after some compromises, I love what we came up with and I’m glad we went forward with the idea. 

Kurt: I don’t like spooky stuff – skip to Christmas!

6. Can we look forward to more releases from you guys soon? An album or EP?
Tyler: Our plan is to head to the studio and flesh out another EP.

7. Where do you see MIDFIELD at this time next year? What are your hopes and dreams to have completed by then?
Tyler: We totally want to get some tours going and hopefully get hooked up with a label that wants to work with us.

8. Does MIDFIELD have any shows coming up? Things people can look forward to and experience your music in person? 
Kurt: Off the top of my head I know we have some cool things lined up in November and December, not positive if any of them are set in stone. So unfortunately I can’t give dates BUT if you check in on Midfield.Pizza every now and then you’ll see any shows we end up getting on.

9. Speaking of live shows, if you could create any tour to be a part of, what would your dream lineup be?
Kurt: I’m sure we all have different dream lineups. One Ty mentioned not too long ago would be Four Year Strong and New Found Glory (which would be sick). A running joke we have (which would also be a pretty badass tour) would be State Champs, Goalkeeper and us (Midfield), and it would be called The Sports Tour.

10. Finally, what’s one thing you want new listeners to know about you as a band and individuals?
Tyler: We really just want to have fun and make music that people enjoy listening to.

Kurt: I can’t speak for everyone, maybe they have something to say about themselves. But what I think I can say for the band as a whole is we’re just five guys having a good time making the music we love, drawn from what we grew up listening to.

MIDFIELD
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Words: Kaiti Fleeger | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Indie Media

OBB Talks “Foolish” and What’s to Come Next

OBB-Foolish

OBB is hot on the music scene and this band of brothers just released their third single of 2019! Get the scoop (haha, get it) on the meaning behind their newest single, “Foolish,” the visuals for the new track and what we can look out for from the band in the near future.

OBB
Photo: OBB

Thank you guys so much for talking to us! So you’re all brothers, but how did you all end up making music together? Tell us a little background about yourself.

We all grew up playing the piano, so we have always enjoyed music. But as we got into our teenage years, we started playing different instruments, and that allowed us to play together as a brother band. The first time we ever played together was for a battle of the bands that our dad signed us up for without us knowing. He came home from work and said, “It’s tonight so start getting ready!” That day was just the beginning. 

Congratulations on your new song “Foolish”! What’s the meaning behind this track?

We find that we often tend to act a little foolish around our crush. You might stay up super late on the phone or drive a crazy amount of miles to see them for just a few hours. I think Buddy the Elf said it best, “I’m in love, I’m in love, and I don’t care who knows it. So that’s the feeling we wanted to give this song. You might act foolish for your love or crush, but who cares?

We’ve heard you guys have a video coming out soon too, can you give us a sneak peek on what we can expect from the visuals? 

We had an amazing time shooting the music video for “Foolish”. We wrote and directed this video ourselves, and we can’t wait for people to see it. It’s a video that has the same vibe as the song. It’s fun, fast-paced, and a little silly. We got to shoot in Monumeny Valley in Utah, so the scenery for the video is unbelievable! 

And this is what, you guys third single of the year? Can we lookout for an EP or album anytime soon? 

Yeah, we are hoping to have the EP out next year, followed shortly by the album! 

How would you say “Foolish” differs from your earlier singles like “7 Billion” and “Close By?”

This single is definitely more of that fun band song! I would say it’s more in the realm of “Mona Lisa” and “Sweater”.

How’s life on tour? Any new cities you all got to visit that you’ve never been to before?

We have a great time out on the road seeing new places! Monument Valley [Arizona] was a new location for us! Also, we got to play in Las Vegas for the first time at the Bite Of Vegas and we can’t wait to go back! 

What is your favorite part of being on tour?

Getting to see the country, meeting fans, and making new fans! 

And you guys recently performed on Good Day LA, any other live performances or shows coming up after tour ends? 

Yeah, we will be hitting some more colleges and then looking at our next tour soon! 

Can fans look forward to anything in the upcoming year? 

We have a lot of new music coming your way, so make sure you follow us on Instagram and Spotify

Listen to “Foolish” below!

OBB
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Words: Mar Maldonado | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Michelle Kirk

We Got “Close Enough” With Richlove

Close Enough

Bringing pop melodies and that oh-so-famous country twang together in perfect harmony, Richlove drops their brand new single “Close Enough” and it’s sending us right back to the middle of June. Notorious for dropping tracks that embody summertime and warmth and sunshine, this up-and-coming five-piece pop-country band is at it again as we approach the cold.

On Friday the band dropped their brand new single which depicts a story of appreciating what’s right in front of you, instead of always looking for something more. Coming together earlier this year, lead singer Chloe Hendrickson wrote the single with fellow country musician, Dylan Brady.

We sat down with Chloe earlier this month for a little chat that wound up covering everything from ice cream flavors to amusement parks, from writing inspirations to touring, and traveling, and new music.

As far as ice cream flavors go, the country-pop singer says Richlove is actually most comparable to sherbet! “[…] because you get a little bit of everything and it tastes like summer.” It sure is fitting, when you consider their personalities and sound, which happens to just be what they naturally fell into: “We all really enjoy the writing in country, we all really like songs that have meaning behind them. [But] We’re all pop kids who love our pop.” So the two loves came together and created this magical force.

Stream “Close Enough” now!

Here at HQ, we’ve been jamming to Richlove nonstop and we’re kind of stoked about the idea of new music and tours from these guys. After a bout of touring and releasing four stand-alone singles, Richlove is determined to get back in the studio to focus purely on writing as much as they can. However, this doesn’t mean we’ll be getting an album or EP soon. “Not right now, unfortunately. We were thinking about it, but we want to focus on writing and creating a bunch of music first.” We’re bummed to hear it, but ready to see what becomes of them in the coming months and years!

Keep an eye out, they’re a fun bunch with a lot to give to the industry! And if you ask them what they want everyone to know about them? “We’re more than the music. It’s more than just writing and we want to meet people. We want to create connections with you.”

Richlove
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Words: Kaiti Fleeger | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Richlove

Twin XL are too “Good” to Miss This Fall!

Twin XL

Twin XL is an alt-pop trio from Los Angeles. Cameron Walker-Wright (vocals), joined brothers Stephen Gomez (bass) and John Gomez (guitar) in the studio back in 2017, just to have a fun jam session. They realized very quickly their time in the studio was more than just messing around – it was pure magic. And that’s how three friends just hanging out gave us the band we are currently obsessing over.

It only took Walker-Wright and the Gomez Brothers a couple years after their first studio session to drop their debut EP How To Talk To Strangers. The trio completely wrote and produced the album themselves. They incorporated classic instruments, synthesizers, and vintage drum machines to give the music a “retro feel”. Countless TV shows and even more playlists are currently featuring the band’s music. You can hear them on Taco Bell’s “The Bell Poolside Playlist”, Hulu’s original series Light as a Feather, and so much more! With a sound that’s been shaped by so many great influences, who wouldn’t want Twin XL‘s music on their project?!

Twin XL have toured with some amazing bands – such as lovelytheband and The Mowgil’s. They have also headlined a bunch of their own shows across North America; but this fall, they are heading out on tour with The Maine. The Mirror is a tour that is a fully immersive concert experience. We could not have begged The Maine to bring a more perfect band than Twin XL on such an experimental tour that will (hopefully!) shape the way of touring in the future.

Keep reading for an exclusive interview with the band!

It’s just been announced that you’re touring with The Maine this fall, on their The Mirror Tour. They’ve claimed that this is their most “ambitious” tour that will give fans an “immersive audio and visual experience.” Has this shaped the way your set will be played on this tour? If so, how?
We are a very visual band – we have some really cool new visual stuff we are working on. We are always trying to improve our show whether it’s adding new transitions between songs or finding those little moments to really do something special within a song. The Maine is such an incredible band and I’m really excited to see the show and be a part of the experience. 

We know you’ve been a part of The Maine’s “Eighty One Twenty Three” Festival, which is a pretty immersive event itself. What do you think will be the biggest difference between the two events?
There are some obvious differences – these shows will be indoors as opposed to an outdoor festival vibe. There’s so much more you can do inside with lighting and set design. I’m not sure what they have planned but they never seem to disappoint! 

You’ve been headlining your own shows recently, what’s been your favorite part about setting up a headlining show, versus participating as an opener?
I love that when we headline our own show we can take our time, so there’s a little more room to experiment and try new things. We did a really cool stripped down / acoustic moment that turned into a big crowd sing along at the last few shows and that was really fun. As an opener our job is to warm up the stage and get the crowd hyped for the headliner but we’re also there to try and win over new fans and we only have a short amount of time to do it. There’s this sense of urgency to it and I love that feeling. 

Your music is so unlike anything we hear on the radio (in the best way)! How has writing for Twin XL differed from writing for any previous projects you’ve been involved in?
Working together has been such a pleasurable experience. When we started writing the songs for the EP we weren’t entirely sure what the destination was and it wasn’t until about half way through that we decided to start a band together. Everything has felt very organic and natural in the studio as well as on tour and on stage.

Your debut EP How to Talk to Strangers features seven different tracks. What are some pros and cons of writing and producing the entirety of your own work?
We have all written and produced music for other artists and outside things so I think we all feel very at-home and confident in the studio. We are very proud of the fact that we made this EP entirely on our own. Everything about the lyrics, music, sound choices, production etc.. came directly from us and we feel extremely connected to it in the best way possible. 

Of the tracks, which is your own personal favorite? Why?
I (Cameron) love the song “Don’t Wake Me, I’m Still Dreaming.” It’s about growing up and how the world seems a bit grey compared to how it  looked when you were a kid –  and desperately trying to hold onto that feeling. 

Your first single as Twin XL was “Good.” Why did you choose this as your official debut? What set it apart from the other tracks on the album?
“Good” definitely felt like a standout track throughout the process of making the EP. The vintage, dusty sound that “Good” has was something we really tried to capture throughout making the EP and it just felt like a great introduction to the band. 

Are there plans to release new music in the near future? If so, what kind of sound are we expected to hear?
We are constantly writing and we have a lot of new songs in the works. Some are very close to being finished and some are in their early stages. We aren’t sure exactly when we will start releasing new stuff since the EP is still very new but there is definitely new music coming in the near future. 

Twin XL

“The vintage, dusty sound […] was something we really tried to capture throughout making our EP”

A lot of your music draws influence from all sorts of musicians and instruments, who/what has been the most outlier of an influence for you?
For me (Cameron) personally The Cure and The Killers have always been big influences. I also love the early Gorillaz stuff… I think for most people there is always those core artists or bands that stick with you. Lately I’ve also been getting to a ton of newer artists as well such as Sir Sly and Pale Waves. There’s so much great stuff out there right now. 

What was the moment when you realized this was way more than friends messing around in a studio and you knew you had to become a band?
I think we all started to feel it after writing the first few songs together. To me I remember having a moment listening back to the first mix of “Friends” and really feeling it was something special. Some time after that John called me while he was driving in his car and he was just like “dude, these songs are really, really great and we want to be in this band with you.” I was hyped because I felt the exact same way. 

You have been featured on a lot of great TV shows and playlists. What show/playlist were you most excited to be featured on?
We just got added to Spotify’s New Alt playlist and that was a very exciting moment. I check that one frequently and have found out about a lot of amazing new artists there so it’s very exciting that we are now included on it.

Which song from The Maine’s entire discography, do you wish you had written?
I’m going to go with “My Best Habit.” The new album is brilliant!

If you could bring any band/artist that has ever existed on tour with you, who would it be and why?
Definitely The Killers. I would just be so stoked to watch them every night.

And finally, what do you want new listeners to know about Twin XL?
We are very excited to be going out on tour with The Maine this fall and we hope to see you there! 

Watch Twin XL’s music video for their debut single, “Good”

Twin XL
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Cameron Walker-Wright
Twitter | Instagram

John Gomez
Twitter | Instagram

Stephen Gomez
Twitter | Instagram

Words: Anna Grillo | Featured Photo: KayKay Blaisdell

Us In Motion Talks Nothing Above, Romantics, and More

After Us In Motion dropped their latest single, “Romantics” on July 26th, MDRN MAG had the pleasure of chatting with the band. From a new EP Nothing Above, to upcoming tours, and yes, even ice cream, Us In Motion chats with us about it all! Read the interview below.

Your newest single, Romantics, is finally available (July 26th). Is there a story behind the song? If so, how did it inspire the final product of the song?

“Romantics” is about how we deal with losing a loved one, rather than the grieving aspect that you normally hear in songs of this subject matter. I wanted to address the ‘what will I do to ensure I can move on and live with the trauma’, opposed to having an ‘I miss you; I wish you were here’ view point. To me, that’s a slightly more ignored and realistic viewpoint that affects people more than the initial loss.

What was the process like for filming and creating the “Romantics music video?

Filming the video was an exciting, yet slightly stressful process. We had never done a ‘real’ video shoot before with story elements and performance shots. So, it was exciting to have multiple sets and bring to life the visuals that I had been seeing in my head during the writing and recording process. We had a small window to shoot in, so the pressure was definitely on.

“bring to life the visuals that I had been seeing in my head during the writing and recording process.”

You have your first EP, Nothing Above, coming out soon. What are you hoping to achieve with its release?

Being our debut, we are hoping to get our name out to as many people as we can and start gaining some traction. We want to continue to build our fanbase outside of Nashville as well, so we can start playing in other cities. 

Are there any particular bands or albums that have influenced Romantics and the rest of your upcoming EP?

The album’s influences are pretty wide-spread. There’s mainly singing and some screaming, high gain and ambiance, and a lot of production. I’d been writing music my whole life and listening to many different genres that have inevitably influenced the different songs I wrote. I think all of those former demos and influences have sculpted my writing style and led me to creating something like “Nothing Above” and “Romantics”. 

What inspired you guys to get into music and the music industry? 

We all grew up listening to music and started teaching ourselves how to play at a young age. For me personally, I enjoyed playing in bands and always dreamed of being a ‘rockstar’, but it wasn’t until high school when I realized I could actually try to make it happen. We all decided to pursue music and that’s when we met here in Nashville.

“We all decided to pursue music and that’s when we met here in Nashville.”

If you could collaborate on a song or album with any artist who would you work with and why?

That’s a tough one! We have a long list mentally, but as far as an all-around collaboration, involving songwriting and producing, I’d probably have to say Jordan Fish or Sonny Moore. They are both incredibly talented at what they do and have had a big influence on me musically for quite some time. If we’re looking at just a guest feature, having Jason Butler from Letlive and Fever333 would be incredible. He brings so much passion to whatever song he’s singing on. 

Are there any plans for an upcoming tour? If so, what are you looking forward to doing while touring?

We currently don’t have any concrete plans but are planning on playing a release show in Nashville, and then trying to do a string of shows throughout the Midwest in the fall or winter of this year. All of those details will be on our pages when they are made. 

What do you want new listeners to know about your band?

There’s nothing too specific, but we just thank them for giving us a chance out of all the other thousands of bands that pop up every day. We hope they enjoy the music and connect with it just as much as we do. 

Finally, what should we expect next from Us In Motion?

Well, we have our debut EP Nothing Above coming out August 16th, and from that point on we’ll be playing shows to support it. We also plan on filming some live/studio session videos for our YouTube, as well as releasing some songs that didn’t make the record. Everything the fans will need to know will be on our socials!

Us In Motion are due to drop their EP, Nothing Above, on August 16th. But in the meantime you can watch visuals for their 3 singles now. And read our review of “Romantics” here!

Us In Motion
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Words: MDRN MAG | Featured Photo: Courtesy of Peyton Lamkins

Sleep On It, White Claw, and Other Things You Need in Your Life.

Sleep On It band
Sleep On It band

Despite the name, Chicago based band Sleep On It is an upcoming band you should keep your eyes open for. The talented musicians behind the band (lead vocalist Zech Pluister, lead guitarist/backing vocalist TJ Horansky, rhythm guitarist/ backing vocalist Jake Marquis, and drummer Luka Fischman) have been working tirelessly since Sleep On It first formed in 2012. And it’s easy to tell that the self-proclaimed “daddest pop-punk band” has been doing everything but sleeping. After finishing their co-headline tour with Like Pacific they’re about to embark on their latest tour with Don Broco. Now they’re getting ready to drop their next album Pride & Disaster.

Sleep On It recently finished a co-headliner with Like Pacific

Fans are dreaming of the day this album drops and that dream will come true on September 13th, 2019. The song “Under The Moment” gives a great glimpse on what’s soon to come on Sleep On It‘s horizon. Bearing dark lyrics and a catchy melody this song will have you deep-in-thought while simultaneously dancing along. Even in their earliest music, the band has harnessed the talent of harmoniously pairing hard topics with cheerful tones and melodies. There’s no doubt that their second album will execute these talents beautifully. Pride & Disaster is gearing up to be a lighter record than their 2018 release Overexposed. However, it will still be the Sleep On It we all know and love. There’s a good reason why this band was named Kerrang‘s Hottest Band Of 2018, so if Sleep On It isn’t on your playlist then you’re definitely doing something wrong.

Check out the music video for “Under The Moment”

Here at MDRN MAG are excited for Pride & Disaster to drop and we hope you are too!

Scroll below for our interview with lead singer Zech Pluister.

What did the process of choosing the album name look like? Where did the name come from?
The album name came from the song “Take Me Back.” When we were picking the name we knew it had to be bold and make a statement. We had a running list of like ten titles, some from lyrics of the record, some just phrases that we thought fit the thematic arc of the record. We landed on Pride & Disaster because it really fit what went into the writing of this record and the message we were trying to portray throughout.

On Overexposed, you collaborated with Derek DiScanio from State Champs. Are there any collaborations fans can expect on the new album?
No guest vocals on this record, but we worked with a different producer, and wrote and recorded a couple [of] swings with Mike Green, who did “Disconnected.” We really wanted to showcase our abilities and what we could do while pushing ourselves to think outside the box, and working with […] some new people was exactly what we needed.

How would you describe the progression of your sound during the writing process of this album?
So the songwriting process didn’t really change too much, they came together in basically the same way as always, just over a little more time. Going into this record we weren’t really sure what we wanted it to sound like, so TJ was basically just throwing any and every idea he had out and we just went with what we thought worked best.

As we approach the release of your new album and enter this Pride & Disaster era, what are you most excited about?
I’m most excited for people to hear the progression of Sleep On It. I think this record is the best music we’ve made yet, and I am so excited to hear what everyone thinks of it. We poured so much of ourselves into this one and I hope that shows.

Which song on the album are you most anxious for fans to hear?
Probably “After Tonight.” We wrote it in the studio with our friend Pete Adams, and we wrote it in [six] hours overnight, and it was just so natural and fun. It’s also really pop forward and something that’s a little different for us. It’s my favorite on the record.

“We want to be better people. We want to improve ourselves, and we want to help the people around us improve as well.”

Knowing you’ve DJed for emonite before, what song on your emonite playlists do you wish you wrote?
That list is almost endless, but if I had to pick one that’s on MY playlist, I would probably say “Sweetness” by Jimmy Eat World.

When was the last time you were truly star-struck?
Meeting Frank Turner at Indianapolis Warped Tour. He is such a huge inspiration to me and the whole band. He’s such a down to earth and an incredible human, and it was a pleasure to talk to him for a little while. It took me three days to ask him to sign my copy of his book.

You just dropped a brand new single called “Under the Moment.” What was the inspiration behind that track?
That song was inspired by my most recent battle with depression and anxiety. Over the last year of touring I’ve kind of spiraled into a deep hole and I didn’t even realize it until writing that song. I all of a sudden found myself distant from my loved ones and isolated. And after I had written it I realized I was calling for help without even noticing I needed it.

On this new track, which lyrics stand out the most to you? Which is your favorite? Why?
Probably, “I promise I won’t drag you down here with me, make the most of the time that we’re wasting.” It really just felt so important and visceral to me after I wrote it. When I go into [a] spiral like that, the happy moments are so important to grab a hold of and run with, “making the most of the time you’re wasting.” So I really felt proud of that one when I wrote it.

The lyrical content on this song is a bit darker, as is the video. How does writing and recording songs like this help your healing and recovery process from difficult times within your life?
It’s just very cathartic to put it out into the world, to let people know that what they’re feeling is normal and natural. Also, it’s just very important and necessary for me to get it out instead of just bottling it all up and holding it in until I explode. Talking about this stuff is the most important way to start a road towards healing.

After finishing your co-headliner with Like Pacific, can you tell us your favorite moment from this run? To add to that, what are you most looking forward to on your next run with Don Broco?
My favorite moment on the whole tour was probably on the last day. We convinced almost everyone to shave into mustaches, and we were all just helping each other shave into the most ridiculous facial hair configurations. It was truly hilarious and I loved it so much.

As far as the Don Broco tour, I’m just excited to see everyone again! We hung out with them and Trash Boat a fair amount on Warped last year and they’re all such great people, and I’m stoked to get to know the Selfish Things folks, it’s bound to be a great time!

We know, in music-industry-years, you’re still fairly young, but have you had a moment yet of “we’ve made it” or “how is this my life?”
The Chicago show on the Co-Headliner. Sold Out Bottom Lounge, our biggest headline show to date. 700 people screaming the words back, my family and girlfriend were there. I was truly just so overwhelmed in the best possible way. Definitely a “how is this my life” moment for me.

If you had to choose a band mascot, would you choose the Buc-ee’s Beaver or a can of White Claw?
It would literally be a combination. Buc-ee double fisting White Claws!

Finally, what do you want new listeners of Sleep On It to know about your band?
Just that we’re normal people from cities and towns just like them. We’re not special, we’re just very very lucky to be in the position we are in, and that none of this would be possible without them showing support, coming to shows, listening to the music. It all thanks to them, and it’s all for them.

Sleep On It’s new record, Pride & Disaster drops next month, so keep an eye out! You can pre-order it here.

Check out the tracklist!
1. Racing Towards A Red Light
2. Hold Your Breath
3. Babe Ruth
4. Under The Moment
5. Fix The Dark
6. After Tonight
7. Take Me Back
8. The Cycle Of Always Leaving
9. Logan Square
10. Lost & Found

Sleep On It
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Words: Maeve Dupree | Featured Photo: Alex Bemis / Second Society Report