With their fourth studio album doing so well we thought it was only right that we caught up with The Wonder Years before their set at Slam Dunk North .
FM: So, the new album’s doing really well in America…
TWY: It is, it’s not doing so bad here here either, infact it’s not really doing bad anywhere. This is the first record we’ve had chart in the UK I think we charted number 108 on the official 200, we’re number 20 in the US and we’re number 98 in Canada. It’s exciting for us.
FM: Were you expecting it to do so well?
TWY: Not quite so well, but we expected it to do well. I don’t want to say that in a “we’re like the fucking best” way, it was more of a “we worked our asses off” way. I mean, I knew it was gonna sell a lot of records because I was physically selling them to people. We did 4 shows in 24 hours, it’s hard to explain to people from England for them to kind of grasp it because I remember once talking to someone over here and they were like “oh yeah we’re going on vacation to New York and then we might take a day and go see California” and I was like, do you understand how far away that is? They were like “It’s the same country” it’s a fucking huge country. If you were to do that it’s a 48 hour drive if you don’t stop for gas. So what we did was in 24 hours, we played Philadelphia, then New York which is about a 3 hour drive and then Chicago which would be a 12 hour drive but we flew so it took like 2 hours then we played in California which is a 6 hour flight and probably a 40 hour drive. That was all in one day and so obviously we sold a lot of records there and then we opened up our own store in Philadelphia for a week.
FM: Would you say this album doing so well is your career highlight?
TWY: Objectively yes, it’s the stat you can measure the easiest. I guess selling that many records in the first week would be a career highlight for sure but it’s different things. It’s flattering and humbling to sell that many records but what gives you more satisfaction is to play the shows and have that sense of community. What I always thought was a cool highlight was The Starting Line Say It Like You Mean It tour and we’re from the same suburb as them like 15 minutes down the road and when we were in high school Kenny was in the next high school over in the year above us. It was like wow dude, this kid got to stop going to high school and start touring with all my favourite bands. That was my favourite record in a long time and we got to play in our home town the day after christmas and The Starting Line got onstage and said some really really nice things about us. It was like who’d have thought a bunch of kids from the fucking suburbs would be doing this stuff. There have been so many wow moments, the first Slam Dunk we played was a wow moment, the first time we went on tour, the first time someone knew the words to one of our songs, the first t-shirt we sold. They were all wow moments. Every next step is like holy shit can’t believe that happened, we’re constantly in utter disbelief. It’s been the same from Day 1 and now we’re on Day I don’t know like 1400.
FM: This album has a more mature sound, was that a conscious decision?
TWY: No, I just think that we’re 2 years older so the record’s gonna sound 2 years older. That’s just how it is, you just evolve as a band. Your music is a by-product of who you are as a person and who I am as a person is now 27 and not 25 so there’s gonna be a change.
FM: Do you get a different reaction here to what you get in the states?
TWY: It’s little things like last night (Slam Dunk Glasgow) was the first time people have sang the guitar lines back to us, often times people sing the words back to us but this was weird. There was a one more tune chant which was weird, because we’re used to one more song. Just little things.
FM: Do you prefer playing the smaller venues or would you rather play the big festivals like today?
TWY: I don’t think I prefer anything. I think the fact that we’re able to do both is really what makes it cool. Sometimes we play big gigs like today and then the next day we’re playing little 500 cap venues.
FM: Do you remember Royal Park Cellars?
TWY: I do remember Royal Park Cellars, I remember there been an immense amount of broken glass. If I were a bar in the UK and I was allowing people to take their drinks into the front area I’d put that shit in a plastic cup. I also remember I was swinging from the pipes.
FM: If you could tour with anyone, who would it be?
TWY: Fireworks. I mean there are others like Man Overboard, Polar Bear Club, Story so far but half of touring is hanging out with your best friends, why wouldn’t you wanna hang out with your best friends? I don’t wanna tour with like The Beach Boys, they’re probably fucking weird. I wanna hang out with Fireworks and joke around. I would really love to do A Starting Line tour though, just because that’s a band we’ve looked up to and they’re from the same city.
FM: Is it just like being on a big holiday, even though you’re working?
TWY: Yeah, there is a lot of that but there’s also y’know “Hey, we have to drive 12 hours right now and none of us can sleep” my job is much better emotionally and much worse physically. A whole tour can be different, based on the people that you’re with cos you’re spending such a huge portion of your life with them. It’s really important that you get along with them. It can make a bad situation much better or a great situation much worse.
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