How is life in Title Fight lately?
Itís really exciting, like the record came out in America two days ago. Those songs have been written and recorded for a while, so itís very exciting to have that out in the world, because it kind of refreshes the whole album to me. Not that I got sick or bored of it, but now that the public is hearing it, itís exciting to see what everyone thinks and itís given it new life, I think.
Shed was only released last year, how come you produced another record so quickly?
I donít know, I think we just wanted to keep things moving and we did a lot of touring off of Shed, and we were writing new music and had a flat where we could record and make it all happen. We just did it because we like writing and we like recording. Just because Shed came out not that long ago, it doesnít mean there has to be time limit or anything. We were just ready and excited to do it. It just happened to work out. It was for the best, because if we were on this tour, still touring on Shed and playing those songs, it would have been fun, but weíre ready to play new songs. We just want to keep things moving and keep things progressing. Maybe after this record itíll take a while to record another one or maybe weíll feel inspired and have another one out a year from now, who knows? For us, I donít work anymore, Title Fight is what we do fulltime and writing music to keep it going is an exciting thing.
So, you just released Floral Green and I havenít seen one negative review, how do you feel about that?
From what I can gather, itís been overwhelmingly positive. Itís weird, because I was expecting a lot of people to be turned off by the new record and I was accepting of that and kind of prepared for it. Especially, when we released the video for ďHead In The Ceiling Fan,Ē the first song off the record, we really stuck our necks out on the line, and people ended up really liking it a lot, which I was surprised about. I think itís that a lot of kids whoíve liked us over the years, are sort of growing up with us in a way with their musical tastes. I know for me, growing up Iíd always love a certain kind of band when I was young and then as I grow older, Iím listening to new music and discovering new stuff. I think being that band that is growing up with our peers is part of the reason why everyone has such an open mind about us releasing new music that sounds different, because change is happening in everyoneís lives. Itís exciting and we really appreciate people sticking by us, like weíve done a lot of weirder tours in the past and stuff that was out of our comfort zone, so it really means a lot to us.
Youíre obviously very Ď90s-influenced Ė whether itís your music, look, merchandise, videos, etc. Whatís with your 90s worship?
I never really thought it was Ď90s worshipí until people started saying that, but I guess it kind of makes sense. To us, thatís what I identify with when it comes to bands I think are cool, like a cool sound, merch, all that kind of stuff. Our frame of reference isnít whatís happening right now, itís what I was drawn to when I was first getting into music. Ď90s just has a cool aura about it, it feels very special and very much itís own thing. Stuff with even like our videos, I think a lot of it is just a product of us. Like the last video for Secret Society, we filmed it on VHS, not just because we were familiar with that, but also because we really needed to get it done really quickly. We had four days to get it done, and we didnít have time to find a fancy camera or find a crazy director to do it, we just did it ourselves. I think itís cool if that encourages a kid to use something they found lying around their house, like an old video camera or old guitar, to prove you donít need to nicest gear or equipment to make art. You can make art with anything. The quality doesnít matter; it just depends on the effort and how you feel about it. To me, thatís what I hope to get across with all these videos. Like if you want to be in a band, you donít have to save up a ton of money to buy the nicest amp or anything like that. Anything you want to do is at your fingertips.
There definitely seems to be a Ď90s resurgence, with bands taking on this more indie/emo rock sound, and even peopleís fashion sense, like hardcore kids wearing their XXLs, why do you think that is?
Yeah, I donít know. Like I said, we donít really look to our peers, weíve always liked what we liked. I think a lot of it has to do with where we come from; weíve had a really good example set for us by the scene and community weíve come from. Things have been past down from old records to t-shirts and the way we discover bands are from the older guys that have been around in the 90s. Weíre just drawn to the past in that way, I guess, and that leads us to buying old t-shirts of bands we like who arenít around anymore. Ned will buy a Gorilla Biscuits shirt or something off some old guy who has it lying around his house and itís just big, because they didnít have as many sizes back then. Now itís common to have girlsí sizes and youth large, which is really nice, but from what I can gather in the 90s, it was like L and XL when it came to hardcore bands and stuff like that. I think thatís maybe a reason why people are looking the way theyíre looking, I donít know. We never really put too much thought into our fashion.
Like you just mentioned, you just released the video for ďSecret SocietyĒ and itís pretty grim, where did that idea come from?
I hate being that guy who takes credit, but I guess it was my idea. We knew we wanted to do a video and we knew we wanted to do something different, and weíve never had a narrative storyline in our videos, and doing videos has been something thatís really started to interest me lately. I just think itís really cool to have another extension of the band thatís an artistic outlet, which is totally different to making music. When we had the idea to make a new video, I was just watching older videos to see if anything struck me and a lot of the visual aesthetic I liked, but I couldnít think of a storyline. I think I watched a video and there was blood on it somewhere and I thought itíd be cool to do something really over-the-top, but almost in a funny way. Something that was a cute storyline, but also gruesome and crude, and I thought that would be a really interesting route to take. I told everyone my idea and I think they were pretty weirded out, but we started speaking about it and Nedís girlfriend helped direct and edit it, and it just kind of snowballed into what it is. Iím really happy with it, I think itís interesting and definitely caught people off-guard.
You said youíve been on some weird tours Ė one that springs to mind is your recent tour with Rise Against and A Day To Remember, which was pretty unorthodox for you, did anyone give you shit?
No one gave us shit to our faces, but I think it reflected on a lot of kids not coming to the shows that would have normally come. I really donít blame them though, because tickets were crazy expensive and most of them were in arenas with barriers and it just wasnít the right atmosphere to see us in. I totally understand people not wanting to go through that, because I donít think I would want to either. I didnít feel any backlash for doing that. I think a lot of people that know us personally know that we just do things, because I donít know when Iím going to experience playing that again. Thatís putting the band aside and what kids are going to think, because at the end of the day, weíre always thinking how we feel and it was just something we wanted to try out and we knew weíd never get a chance like that again. Iím glad we did it, because despite no one caring we were playing, we met some really awesome people and it was cool to see that sort of professional side of touring and have videos and pictures to show our kids when weíre older. It was a really special thing and I was glad to do it with the rest of the guys in the band, because it was a learning experience for everybody. Weíll always be able to play a basement no matter what, but weíre not always going to be able to play an arena. If people talked shit on us, then I didnít hear, because I donít pay attention to anyone except my friends.
I remember interviewing you back in 2010 and there was a load of hype around you, and two-and-a-half years on, there still seems to be this massive buzz about you.
It feels good to know that people are talking about our band and care about us. We quit school in order to pursue the band as a career, not only to devote our lives to creating art, but also we dropped everything we were doing to see if we could do it as a career. I feel like weíve constantly been doing well the past few years, and as a band, you canít really ask for anything more. If no one was talking about us now or no one was hear to see us, then itíd be a different story. If people are still talking about us and weíre still a ďhypeĒ band or whatever, I donít care. Iím having the most fun of my life and making some stuff Iím really proud of. Itís crazy. I feel like we got really lucky, because I think there are a lot more bands that deserve to be more recognized, and I feel like weíre not any better than a lot of bands. We feel really lucky and fortunate to be in a position where weíre able to do exactly what we want and people are still sticking with us. Weíve been able to tour and go around the world, on our own terms too. We havenít compromised on any of our music or art, and I think thatís important. I donít know what it is, but hopefully, it keeps up.
Even though your sound in Title Fight has digressed, you still remain true to your hardcore roots, as youíre in a straight edge youth crew band called Disengage Ė is there anything going on with Disengage at the minute?
Thatís more Nedís baby more than anything. He writes everything, I just kind of play live, because itís fun. Itís just like a casual thing we do on the side when we have time from Title Fight. Those shows are where all our friends are at and itís cool to go back to that after doing a tour like this on a bigger scale. Doing Disengage kind of brings us back down to earth and we donít get to worry about the little inconveniences that Title Fight shows sometime bring up, because the more we tour, the more professional it gets, which is cool, but to not worry about what time weíre loading in or sound checking, and just hang out with our friends and play, thereís no agenda and itís just about playing music. Disengage isnít really up to anything right now, Iím sure weíre going to play more shows and write more music, but weíve been pretty focused on the Title Fight record, so we havenít had time.
I interviewed Uriah from Dead End Path earlier this year and he said the Wilkes-Barre scene was at a low point a couple of years ago, but then you got a venue and it really flourished. How do you feel about the Wilkes-Barre scene?
Itís so cool to be apart of it, especially traveling around the world, like weíll go to Japan and kids will be wearing Dead End Path shirts and they donít even speak English, but Iíll point to the shirt and theyíll know Dead End Path is from Wilkes-Barre and know what it is because of our friends. Thatís crazy to me, because theyíre my friends and weíre just a bunch of dumb kids who are in bands and try really hard to be creative, and people recognize that. Itís really awesome. Thereís always new kids coming through and new bands starting out all the time, itís really healthy for being such a small area. Everybody just kind of looks out for each other and I think itís a really unique experience if youíve never experienced something like that, but to us, itís just home and normal. The venue helped out a lot, it actually got shut down recently, but weíre reopening one in October, hopefully. It gives us a common ground and we play there whenever we can Ė us, Dead End Path, United Youth, The Menzingers, Tigers Jaw, thereís so many cool bands in the area, and itís important to have that sense of community.
Whatís next for Title Fight after this?
Weíre going home and having a record release show in October, which should be pretty fun. Then weíre doing a headline tour in the States with Pianos Become The Teeth and a band from Canada called Single Mothers. Tigers Jaw is playing a couple of shows, Powertrip is playing a couple of shows, and Face Reality. Weíre really excited to do it, because we havenít headlined in America in a while, and the new record will have been out for a couple of months and we get to tour with the bands we got to pick, so itís really exciting. After that, itís the holidays, so we donít really have anything planned after that. Iím sure weíre going to tour a lot on this record and try to get as many people as we can to listen to it.
Is there anything else you want to say?
Thanks for the interview and thanks for anyone who supports our band, especially in spite of weird tours or anything like that, that is kind of questionable as of late. I totally appreciate people still coming out and listening to the music. I just want to thank anybody thatís stuck it out with us.