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Interview | Never Shout Never

April 18, 2010
By: Megan Washington | Filmed By: Bridget Washington
Video Interview: Available here.

* There was a press release last February that stated you were releasing your full-length in May. But, it turns out, you didn’t release your full-length until January. It said you were also going to be working with Forest Kline. So, at that point, before you got your major label deal, had you started recording a full-length then?
Well, the Summer EP was suppose to be a full-length. But, it turns out, I didn’t really like half of the songs that I recorded, and I recorded that with Forest. We just wanted to have some B-sides and stuff, so we just put out a six song EP, which was the Summer EP. After that, we recorded in June of that same year, last year, for What Is Love?. That was suppose to be a full-length again but I didn’t really like some of the songs I recorded so we just did eight. But, actually, I go back into the studio in May to record the next—well, the first full-length. Which, I think I’m going to put out under Christofer Drew instead of Never Shout Never. It’s going to be the first one, I’m really excited. I have like, literally, thirty songs right now that I’ve just been storing for this transition. I feel like they’re some of my best songs so far.

* So you’re going to be dropping the Never Shout Never name?

* What do you think is the most important thing for your fans to take away from your latest release (What Is Love?)?
I guess, experimentation. You know, letting them know that I’m not going to be making the same shit over and over again. You know what I mean? Alot of kids didn’t really like the last full-length—the last EP—because it was different. I recorded alot of the stuff live. It was alot more raw than the other stuff. You know? My vocals weren’t spot on. Like, I didn’t take a bunch of vocal takes. It was literally like, I’d take two vocal takes, and we’d take the best one. I wanted to keep it super organic, and also we recorded it all on analog equipment. So, it was all pre-70’s stuff. It was really fun. You know, I just want the kids to understand that I’m not going to be making the Yipee EP over and over again. Alot of them are kind of stuck in that phase, but I want them to grow past that.

* Recently you made your national TV debut on Carson Daly’s late night show. So did you guys have to change any aesthetics of your performance for the show compared to like your show here at the AP Tour?
No. We just kind of went with it. We played and hung out, and were goofy.

* You’ve had some videos come out recently. How did you come up with the concept for those? Or, did somebody send you treatments for them?
Well, I got my buddy Isaac—who’s been doing all of the videos since the bigcitydreams one, two years ago—we just kind of team up and we lay it all out. I’ll say like—this last “Can’t Stand It” video—I kinda want to do some Bob Dylan and Beatles references in there and things like that. It’d be cool if we did the Ed Sullivan show or something like that. So, Isaac just kind of put together a treatment for me, and I sent some changes back to him. We just kind of went back and forth with it until we get our finished product that we really like.

* Out of all of the videos that you have done, which one has been the most difficult?
The most difficult, probably “Can’t Stand It” just because it was a little more intense, you know, we had to have extras and things like that for it. It was our biggest production video so far. But, um, I think my favorite would have to be the “What Is Love?” love. I love that one. It’s super stripped down. It took us like forty minutes total, and it’s all just one shot. And also, I got to have all of my friends in it too. So it’s my favorite. Also, it was super like fall weather. The colors were really beautiful.

* Punk Goes Classic Rock is being released on the 27th, and you contributed “Bohemian Rhapsody,” originally by Queen. So, what was the story behind that song, did you pick it?
Yeah. I just, I wanted to pick the hardest song possible, and I feel that was definitely the hardest. I had to do like fifty vocal tracks and all this crazy shit. I just wanted a super big challenge, you know. Something that I’d just have to go above and beyond to get it. It’s okay, it’s not the best thing I’ve ever done, but I feel like it’s a pretty good attempt for me–being a nineteen year old kid trying to cover a masterpiece. I worked my ass off. So, I just wanted something that was really difficult.

* The Jersey Shore is filming here in Florida for their new season. So if you were magically a cast member on the show, what would you be known for?
I’ve never really watched that show, but, I’d probably be known for being the guy that just gets stoned and goes in the bathroom and writes songs.

* Have you ever seen The Buried Life, then?
No. What are these shows on?
* They’re on MTV.
I’ve never seen that stuff.
* The Buried Life, is actually good. Our next question was actually in reference to The Buried Life. If you had one thing you had to do before you die, what would you want it be?
Ummm, I don’t know. I haven’t like, cried in nine months. So, I’d love to just cry. It’d be awesome.

* What kind of responsibility do you feel like you have to assume with introducing your fans to new music?
Uhh, you know, just make relateable music and not be selfish about it. I could easily just be selfish about it and write crazy ass indie songs instead of trying to make songs that are relateable. I just want to make songs that people can sing along with and something they can feel the emotion in. It has to be emotional, it has to be from the heart. It can’t be just bullshit, it can’t be just a product, you know? So, I just have to, I guess, just make songs that are easy to relate with and have some kind of emotion from the heart.

* Do you think it’s more important to be understood as an artist or as a person?
Nobody’s ever really completely understood. You know what I mean? I think… I say artistry and personality are kind of the same thing. I think just being understood is a little far fetched for me because nobody has ever understood me—not even my family. So, it’s a little far fetched for me. I think it would be cool to be understood, but at the same time I like being misunderstood because it gives me more inspiration to write songs and be different.

* The last question is obviously, what do you want to say to your fans?
I guess that I love you guys and that you guys are sick. I really appreciate you guys listening to the music. I’m just going to keep trying to write songs that you guys like and that you guys can sing along with, and express myself. Also, to live with love and to live with selflessness instead of selfishness because our society trains us to be selfish and I hope that you can live your life with selflessness because that’s how you’re going to be happiest.