“It’s been a minute since we played, so I feel nothing but positive,” A Day To Remember frontman Jeremy McKinnon tells NME just a short while before they’re due on stage at their huge comeback show at Reading 2019. “This is one of the biggest rock festivals in the world. It’s always an honour to play, and to be asked to play right before Foo Fighters is just incredible.”
Watch our full video interview with A Day To Remember frontman Jeremy McKinnon above
Those vibes of hope and optimism are symptomatic of being in and around ADTR these days. Their last album, 2016’s ‘Bad Vibrations’, was born of frustration, confusion and gloom. Now, as McKinnon finds himself at the end of “the best 10 years of his life”, A Day To Remember are gearing up to roll out a record driven by much, much happier vibes. ‘You’re Welcome’ will arrive on November 15 through Fuelled By Ramen records.
“The mood in the camp is positive,” McKinnon told NME. “I would say that shows in the songs too. It kind of feels like the happiest record that we’ve written in a minute – or ever. That’s exciting for me. The name of the game this time was collaboration. You know, getting in a room together, getting in a room with people who inspire us, seeing what comes out.”
The new album ‘You’re Welcome’ (due “at the tail-end of next year”), was last week launched by the bold and bright new single ‘Degenerates‘. You might be thinking of it as an anthems for all the rogues and renegades, but you’d be sorely mistaken.
“It’s actually the complete opposite of that,” he admits. “I’ve been getting a lot of people say that, and for good reason. I’m playing around a lot on this record with this thing that I’m really inspired by from the country world. Kacey Musgraves has got this song called ‘Space Cowboy’. I love how you’ve seen the title of the song, you think you know what she’s talking about, then that chorus hits and it’s a completely different subject and meaning than what you thought the song was going to be about.”
He continues: “I thought that was just the coolest thing, and that really inspired me lyrically to ask, ‘How can I take this subject and just flip it on its head?’ If you really listen to the lyrics in ‘Degenerates’, it completely flips the meaning of the song. It’s about what other people assume by looking at someone. That’s where the line ‘dividing all the books by their covers‘ comes from. It’s about judging others by the way they look, rather than on their merits.”
So is there a ‘message’ to the new album as a whole?
“Honestly, no. Like every Day To Remember record, all of these little islands exist on their own,” replies McKinnon. “We’re never going out and trying to write a specific thing. We kind of just let the idea evolve into whatever is best for the idea. It’s similar to ‘Common Courtesy’, I would say.”
And will there be a few more surprises on this album, like the Viking metal on ‘Bad Vibrations’?
“On one of the songs we go even more in the hardcore direction and are more influenced by real deal hardcore bands that are very modern,” he goes on. “We did one with Will Putney who’s an awesome, heavy producer. It goes all over the place. There’s one that’s influenced by Tom Petty.”
And of course, we couldn’t let McKinnon go without asking if 2019 will also see them to anything to mark the 10th anniversary of their seminal album ‘Homesick’ – a record firmly embedded in the hearts of so many fans.
“The thing with that was, of course it’s something that we want to celebrate – but it just didn’t seem right,” says McKinnon. “We’d just done the 15th year celebration tour, so doing something like that back to back just wasn’t right for the moment. There’s also the fact that people expect it. Let’s wait until the time is right. If you love it today, then I’m hoping you’re going to love it whenever we play that show.”
For now, enjoy A Day To Remember living very much in the now, and loving every minute of it.
‘You’re Welcome’ is released on November 15.
Watch our full video interview with McKinnon above, he also talks about his dancing skills and other plans for the future.