Title Fight - Ned
What are you guys currently up to?
As of late, we’ve been practicing every day. We’ve been home for about a month now, since United Blood ended. We’ve been home practicing and getting ready for the SET YOUR GOALS tour, and tonight is Man Monday so we’re going to eat chicken wings and watch WWE Monday Night Raw all night.
How do you handle getting into the mentality of being ready for a big tour like the one with SET YOUR GOALS?
I’m definitely amped up about the tour. We’ve been home for about a month now like I said, but we just have started touring more lately. I’m excited to go back out and play some new areas for us, as well as some of the same that we usually play. It will be interesting to play to some kids we’ve never played to before. Every week on that tour, there’s a new opener for the tour. The first week has MAKE DO AND MEND which is cool ‘cause we can hang out with them. It’s going to be an awesome tour; I’m excited about it.
Are there any areas of the country you’ve never been to before that this tour is hitting?
Not so much on this tour… A lot of them are smaller areas for shows. SET YOUR GOALS is doing the Warped Tour so they aren’t allowed to play within a certain radius of all those cities Warped is hitting. Those are all the major cities. Because of that, this tour is a lot of the smaller towns across the country. Coming from Wilkes-Barre, that’s like what we have for a scene. We are in a small area of Pennsylvania that doesn’t get a lot of touring bands and is winding down. We’re going out to those places with SET YOUR GOALS, who has a really good reputation with the spotlight on them. It’ll be cool to see how kids in smaller areas like that react to a band like SET YOUR GOALS or COMEBACK KID.
How did you guys originally get approached about doing this tour?
It was really SET YOUR GOALS who made it happen. Their booking agent is kind-of our booking agent. Not really…. They work in the same company, the Kenmore Agency. I guess they were into us and gave us a really good offer. We’ve never toured with them, although we’ve played with them like once, but we chilled with them a little bit in California too. We decided it’d be a fun thing to do and a little different.
You have Bamboozle coming up. That same day, you are playing up in Providence, RI. Logistically how is that going to work?
We’re going to show up early to Bamboozle. We requested to play as early as possible. I think the Rhode Island show starts at like…. 7 or 8 o’clock there, and we’re playing 2nd or 3rd. We’re going to hopefully be able to play kind-of early in the day at Bamboozle and then get right out of there to drive straight to the show. I wish we could hang around and see some of the bands.
If you could hang around for it, what bands would you try to see this year?
I want to see PARAMORE play… Our friends in FOUR YEAR STRONG are playing. Every year is a pretty good fest, and in the past couple years, they’ve been incorporating hardcore bands into the mix which is really cool. Like last year with the MONGOLOIDS set, saw some videos from that.
On a contrast with Bamboozle, you guys played United Blood recently, which was an awesome fest in itself. Do you prefer playing a hardcore fest like that over a larger mostly non-hardcore fest (like Warped, Bamboozle, etc)?
Just growing up being a hardcore kid, my general interest lies in going to hardcore shows and playing hardcore shows. That aside, it’s cool playing something like Bamboozle. We haven’t done too many things like that before. We’ve done the Ernie Ball stage of Warped Tour before in 2007 I think? We won some contest online or something. That stuff is cool because it’s completely different. There are barriers and security guards, but your sound is good on stage, and you’re playing to way more people than a thing like United Blood. I just like the vibe of a hardcore fest. Any fest we play like Sound And Fury, United Blood, and This Is Hardcore just has a good vibe and has kids there who want to have fun and not be there just to catch the hottest new band. There aren’t any industry people there or any stupid stuff like that. Kids are there for music, which is what we’re interested in.
Do you have any plans for the summer set in stone yet?
We have it set up right now so we get home from the SET YOUR GOALS tour, hang out for a week, then fly out to Rainfest in Seattle. After that, it’s just laying low and writing new material. We were trying to have a record be recorded in the summer, but we waited too long on that so we need to finish writing it and see where we are going to record and all that. We’ll probably get in the studio at the end of the summer. We just want to have as much time as we need to finish writing and get everything perfect how we want it. We decided to spend a lot more time on that. As soon as we’re done in the studio, I’m sure we’ll be out again and touring.
For writing new material, is the band more collaborative, or do any of you in particular craft most of the songs?
It’s more of a collaborative effort as a whole, but Jamie is the one who usually brings the riffs to the table to start with. He’s the one who really starts almost every song that we write. I’m sure he has like 12 LPs written in his head right now. He’ll come to the table and say he has a song he wrote like three years ago that didn’t fit then, and he’ll go play it for us. He’s that kind of kid. He just writes stuff constantly, and it’s always awesome. Once he brings something forward, we all work on it, put our input into it. That slows down the writing process since we’re trying to please four people instead of having one person drive the whole thing, but we want everyone to be 100% happy because this is something that we really enjoy and want to be proud of. We try to put as much effort into it as we possibly can.
Got a couple questions about other bands you’ve been doing also… First off, is BAD SEED an active band at this point, or are the rumors true about it been mostly done?
BAD SEED isn’t really winding down, but we’re just so busy with TITLE FIGHT that we haven’t been able to think about it much. I mean, we’re going to do a show in Wilkes-Barre, and we’ll probably do more stuff like that, but it’s more focused on TITLE FIGHT. Plus the other guys in BAD SEED have other stuff going on as well. Our guitarist is in school finishing up and stuff. We haven’t had any time to sit down and practice or write anything new besides that WAR HUNGRY split. It’s active to a point of a hardcore band with kids in other bands and kids in school. There might be some more stuff after Rainfest, but we’re trying to figure out everyone’s schedules to see what we can do. BAD SEED is still going on though.
I remember DISENGAGE played at a show I was at down at Championship. I heard something about a 7” for you guys coming out months ago and then heard nothing more. Is that still going to happen?
That band was originally just me writing songs that I wanted to write. I just recorded a demo… I did a zine for Edge Day, and I just wanted to do a PROJECT X type thing and have a certain amount of zines come with a DISENGAGE demo. Some people actually were into it so I decided to do a little more with it. We played a couple shows, and we were going to record that 7”, but it’s really been on the backburner. Hopefully it’s coming out soon.
Do you have any other projects you’ve been writing for on the side?
We always have a bunch of stuff at home. I’m trying to start a band with Dan from COLD WORLD’s girlfriend called DOG POWER. Kinda like an indie band with a girl singer. Our drummer has recording stuff so we’ll just be jamming, write a couple songs, record a demo, and play a couple shows. It’s just a lot of small side bands just for fun.
What’s your personal opinion on the strength of the hardcore scene right now?
I don’t think we’ve ever had a bad show in Richmond, which is where we just played for United Blood. Our shows in Pennsylvania have been awesome, as well as Jersey. Shows have been really good. In general, I’m stoked on hardcore right now. There are a lot of really good bands out right now. There are a lot of good bigger bands too putting out awesome stuff. United Blood this year had one of my favorite lineups I’ve ever seen. There were so many good bands, and it wasn’t even like crazy reunions with people coming out of the woodwork. It was just all the main bands from today. All the kids were super stoked on being there. Everywhere we go it seems like hardcore is doing well. As always, there are problems, but I love hardcore. I love being in a hardcore band, touring, and talking about hardcore to kids. It seems like everyone else is stoked as well so there’s really nothing to complain about.
You mentioned new bands coming out… Who should people check out immediately when they finish reading this interview?
BACKTRACK, FOUNDATION, MOTHER OF MERCY, GYPSY, FREE SPIRIT, NO TOLERANCE, STICK TOGETHER is coming out with a new record soon. Way too many bands for me to remember. Really, check out all the bands around right now, give everyone a chance.