When did it all start for your band?
I got my first real six-string. Bought it at the five-and-dime. Played it ’til my fingers bled. Was the summer of sixty-nine… actually, it may have been closer to the summer of 2011.
What does the name American Standards represent?
The absolute opposite of what it reads. Think of the irony.
Where do you draw inspiration from?
Everything from the bands that we grew up listening to, to the experiences that we’ve had over the years. I find inspiration comes most often when at the edge of sleep and it’s least convenient to put pen to paper.
Some people say we’re fortunate (some say unfortunate) to be living in interesting times. What say you?
I think every time in history is simultaneously the most and least fortunate time depending on who’s reflecting upon it. We have more tools and resources to influence positive change then ever. It’s up to us to have the right mind set and optimism to do so.
Are you a political band?
We’re political but non partisan in our approach. We’re not here to push an agenda or give the answers but hopefully we can pose questions that people haven’t considered yet. I think the only effective means to create real change is the path that leads to self realization by both parties. Screaming your own viewpoints without listening to others only creates a polarizing effect.
Can you tell us about your main influences?
Musically our influences vary pretty dramatically. We all grew up listening to bands like Rage Against The Machine, Refused And System Of A Down. When we look more towards today, similar artists would probably land closer to The Dillinger Escape Plan, Converge, The Chariot and Every Time I Die.
Your latest album ‘’Anti-Melody’’ was released in April. How has the reception been so far?
It’s been a humbling experience. It feels like people have really connected with the story and message behind the songs. We wrote much more personally than in past releases and I’m beyond thankful for everyone that’s been open to take the journey with us.
Why did you decide to name your album ‘’Anti-Melody’’?
To me a good album or song title is always multifaceted. ANTI-MELODY started as an inside joke made over a decade ago. During my first experience at a recording studio the engineer had made a comment that our vocalist sang “a killer anti-melody”. At the time, this went completely over my head and I didn’t realize it was actually a subtle knock at his ability to harmonize. Fast forward to the recording of this album and somehow I pulled this fleeting moment out of the memory bank. It really seemed to fit the theme of the album in a literal and more poetic sense. The idea of a collection of single notes that come together to make something pleasant and musically satisfying is actually being pulled apart. Perhaps a representation of the dissonance in our music along with the exploration of themes such as personal loss and cultural divide in the song lyrics.
What are you listening to these days?
I think anyone looking for new noise should really check out Frontierer, Employed To Serve, Bungler and Dangers. All great bands really pushing the genre in the right direction.
Are you guys movie fans? Any good ones you’ve seen lately?
I’m a pretty big movie buff; especially for a good horror, sci-fi or documentary. I think a few of the stand out films from 2017 are;
- Get Out
- The Big Sick
- Baby Driver
- It Comes At Night
I also strongly recommend jumping on Netflix to binge Black Mirror and Master Of None. Both deal with some heavy topics and make them more easy to digest. Then of course Stranger Things as the series that everyone in the world has probably told you that you have to watch.
You’ve shared the stage with bands like Sick Of It All, Norma Jean, Atreyu and Nails. Is there a live show you enjoyed playing the most?
Playing with a lot of the bands that we’ve always looked up to and respected has been great but honestly some of the most memorable shows end up being the small DIY spots. We did a house show in Kansas City for example where there must have been 80 kids crammed into a tiny living room. We thrive in those environments.
Any live shows planned in the months to come? European dates perhaps?
We’re doing a small run of US festivals at the end of October then planning to jump right into pre-production for the next release. I’m sure we’ll have some one off shows between now and then but the goal is to have new music by the beginning of 2018 then hitting the road hard shortly after. We’d LOVE to make it out to Europe if all the stars align. If any of your readers want to partner on making it happen, feel free to reach out to us!
What does the future hold for American Standards?
More music, touring and hopefully more fun, new ways that we can directly connect directly with people like live streams and such.