A Day To Remember have spent the last year going from strength to strength since the release of their 2010 third album ‘What Separates Me From You’ and are currently blazing a trail across Europe as headliners of the Eastpak Antidote Tour.
NME recently caught up with their frontman Jeremy McKinnon to talk stage pyrotechnics, UK crowds and his love of Mumford & Sons.
So, how has the tour been so far?
“It’s been amazing man, absolutely awesome, this has easily been our best time coming over here so far. This tour in particular has been great because we’re friends with all the other bands we’re playing with and we absolutely love all of them so that’s made it amazing.”
How have you found UK crowds?
“They’ve been incredible. I know it’s a kind of stock phrase to talk about how good the crowds are over here, but it’s true. There’s something about playing in Europe with the crowds, I guess they just appreciate it a little more over here because they don’t get to see us as often. It’s really inspiring to have that experience.”
You’ve the last band to who will ever get to headline the Eastpak Antidote Tour. How has that been?
“It’s very weird to be the ‘last’ band to ever play for sure. I know they’re thinking of going hip-hop next time around, but it’s amazing that we’ve got to be a part of it.”
So what’s happening next for A Day To Remember? Lots more touring?
“After this tour we’ve got a week and a half off and then we’re doing a short tour with some radio events. Then we’ve got six weeks off before we start touring with Rise Against across the US. Then we’re doing Soundwave in Australia and then we’re coming back to Europe for some summer festivals.”
“I can’t say yet man. We’ve not ready to announce them all.”
You’re nearing the end of your touring cycle, are you thinking about a new album yet?
“I am. I’ve got a lot of stuff written. We’ve not been able to get down to putting it all together as yet, so when that happens we’ll really be ready to go. But there’s a tonne of ideas.”
Have you gotten any new inspirations for the new material? What have you been listening to?
“There’s new stuff I’m listening to all the time, I listen to a bit of everything, a huge thing that I was actually listening to the year before last was the Mumford & Sons record, that was really big for me, I think it’s amazing and full of great songs. This year, I’m listening to the new Bon Iver record, the Living With Lions record is great, I’m working with The Ghost Inside so I’m super into them and they’re a big influence on me, heavy wise. I love that band. A little bit of everything, I’m actually really into the new Coldplay record, it’s great.”
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Do you think Coldplay or Mumford could bleed into A Day To Remember’s next record?
“Maybe, I guess I’ll find out when we go through all the new ones, but no one’s ever told me that in the past when we’ve made records and I’ve always listened to a bit of everything. When I was making ‘What Separates Me From You’ I got really big into this country singer for a month. Everything influences me, but it’ll be an A Day To Remember record.”
You’ve said you’re trying to add a bit more production and colour to your live shows, why have you decided to do that?
“There are no bands, certainly no bands on our level, who seem interested in adding that to their shows. If you look back at 80s and all those arena rock shows, I remember going to see some of those and it was so much fun and it’d really help you get into the show. Bands who do crazy things onstage and I think a lot of kids growing up now will have never seen bands put on shows like that. I think everyone else is just stupid for not trying that because firstly it’s fun and secondly all the kids just eat it up.
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“Nobody pays attention to them, nobody wants to put on a show. So many bands work so hard and when they get to a level where they’re playing decent sized rooms, they just stop trying and just do the exact same thing over and over again until kids get bored. Our band will never stop, we’re going to keep making our show bigger, we’re going to keep giving back to our fans and that’s why we’re going to be around a lot longer than anybody else.”
What would like to do with your shows? Would you want to pyrotechnics?
“The sky’s the limit with that stuff. The more we keep growing, the crazier and crazier stuff we’ll do. When we played on Warped Tour over the summer we doubled the size of the stage, we had these two inflatable speaker cabinets that were the size of the stage and we had these intros with loads of clips about monsters rising and then models of our five heads would inflate above the stage. A five-headed monster loomed over the stage while we played; none of the kids knew what had hit them.”
What’s the best arena rock show you’ve ever seen?
“Rammstein. I saw them headline a German festival a few years back and it was easily the craziest thing I’ve ever seen. That’s a perfect example of a great show, I’d only heard one of their tracks, that ‘Du Hast’ song and I sat there for two hours in awe of the whole thing.
“I was with a friend and we could have both given a damn about the actual songs, but the whole show was so damn entertaining that I wasn’t bored for one second. And what’s more important than that? If you can convert the people who don’t care about your band and make them have a good time, then imagine what you can do for the people who love your music, you’re doing something for those people that people can’t do.”