Coming off of The Only Way To Be Alone what are the plans for the next album?
Dan Swartz [Guitar, vocals]: The next album is going to be two EPs that are gonna come out. We havenít picked a release date yet but itís all done, itís all recorded. Itís just a matter of finishing them up and getting ready to release them and figuring out what our plan is from there. Weíre really excited about the new stuff that weíve recorded right now.
Tim Arnold [Drums, accordion, vocals]: Itís going to be part one and part two.
Dan: Theyíre going to come out separately throughout the year, hopefully early Summer and then early Winter and then hopefully next year weíll have another full length out.
And itís still going to be on Sargent House Records?
Dan: Yep, same label.
Zack: Where do you draw the inspiration from for your music?
Dan: Our inspiration is definitely the places we are or whatever weíre thinking that day. I think itís more of our lives than musical, as far as where the songs actually come from. Itís not like ďOh, I heard a song like that, I want to write a song like that.Ē Thereís not a logical thought process to putting the feeling of a song down.
How did you decide to go with a three part harmony and the folk sound coming off of being in Days Away?
Tim: Originally it was supposed to be one guitar and vocals and it was supposed to just be real stripped down acoustic and thatís where it started. But then we would do these cover shows and play bars and play all these cover songs and we all would just start singing together and we realized that it sounded good and we had a good blend going so weíre like, ďWeíve gotta do this in the songs.Ē
Dan: When Keith [Goodwin] and I first demoed stuff when Days Away had just gotten off tour, it wasnít really for a project necessarily, we started demoing some songs that we were writing separately and giving to each other and when we started putting the harmonies down we needed one more voice anyway so we started laying down three every time and it seemed to work out well that way. So Tim was able to do all the parts. We all have a very similar range. Every one of us has one place where they can go where the other person canít go.
So Keith is the highest?
Dan: Actually Keith is the middle, the lead singer right in the center. Iím the highest and Tim, Tim has a pretty broad range but he generally sits on the lower parts.
Do you have titles at all for the new albums?
No, weíve been tossing them around. We had one but it didnít get agreed on. And thatís definitely part of the process of getting it up and ready to go. I couldnít tell you how excited I am about the stuff that weíve done.
Is there going to be a vinyl release?
Dan: Yeah, definitely. Only Way To Be Alone is going to come out on vinyl and hopefully thatís gonna somehow coincide with our EP release. Itíll be a full length vinyl. Thatís part of what weíre trying to figure out. I canít really say exactly. The vinyl for Only Way To Be Alone will absolutely be coming out.
Whatís your favorite place to play?
Tim: Baltimoreís always fun, Chicago. Chicagoís definitely fun.
What are you listening to right now?
Dan: We are listening to a very wide variety of things.
Tim: I just got this new Squarepusher [album] that I really like. Itís badass. Itís like space-disco. Alien disco.
Dan: What am I listening to? Iím listening to The Hollies, Blood Sweat and Tears, The B-52ís, the new Animal Collective record. Lots of underground old stuff, it seems like. Iím starting to discover a lot of those old bands that Iíve missed, like 10 years after, bands that were really cool but just got missed along the way and discovering that theyíre just amazing bands.
I can speak for Keith and say that he listens to a lot of Harry Nilsson and a lot of reggae. Those things are on in the van all the time.
Ever thought about doing a reggae song?
Dan: Yeah. We want to one day make a record thatís us singing, like songs that we wrote, but have a real reggae group play all of the music. We love reggae and we love the feel of it.
[Dan at this point picked up his ukulele and played a few bars of some random reggae]