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Spin or Bin Music Interview With The All-American Rejects

By  January 14, 2012

The boys of The All-American Rejects may not be in town but we managed to snag an interview with them last December!

From going on secluded writing retreats, facing "a quarter-life crisis" to filming the video for Someday Gone, TAAR has been busy working away on their follow-up to 2008 release When The World Comes Down. Find out what the hitmakers of Gives You Hell have to say about their upcoming album Kids in the Street.

It's been awhile since your last record, what's it like getting back into the studio?

TAAR: It was great getting back into the studio for “Kids In The Street.” We work in shifts… We’ll burn ourselves out on the road and then hit the studio and do the same until we can’t wait to play shows again. But we went into “Kids In The Street” with a different mindset than our past records. We wanted to ditch the compulsive need for technical perfection and make sure that, first and foremost, we got the vibe right. So we took things loosely, tracked a lot of songs live, and learned to embrace the little mistakes that added up to the big feel we were searching for.


What can fans look forward to from upcoming album Kids in the Street?

TAAR: “Kids In The Street” is definitely a record unto itself when you look at all of our albums. We always take our time writing, and I think because of that our records tend to sound different from each other, but something came together with “Kids In The Street” that doesn’t happen often. It’s our most varied record stylistically, yet somehow feels like our most cohesive. It definitely carries you through different moods… ups and downs… but it all makes sense. That’s what you always hope to achieve, but it rarely happens as you envision it.

So it's a bit of a routine for Nick and Tyson to go on retreats to write songs. Tell us about the songwriting process.

TAAR: The songwriting trips were again the basis for a lot of the songs on “Kids In The Street.” It sometimes just takes that seclusion, that removing yourself from the rest of the world, to be able to focus in a productive way. The songs on “Kids In The Street” were written over the course of a year all over the country, but unlike in the past, we actually utilized the studio to form the moods and arrangements of a number of the songs. This wasn’t a “jam for a month in a practice space, then hit record” kind of album. Several of the songs truly found their personality once we hit record.

What are some of the things/moments or stories that have inspired and influenced the creation of this record?

TAAR: Tyson had a rough time after we came off the road touring our last record, “When The World Comes Down.” You could call it a quarter-life crisis, but it comes down to something I think a lot of our generation is facing: the realization that you’re no longer a kid, but you have yet to make a life for yourself as an adult. We all handle it in different ways, but Tyson’s methods fell on the more self-destructive side. He had to find himself, and doing so may not have always led to the best paths, but those paths led to songs. The songs ended up being good therapy and what you hear on “Kids In The Street.” They’re some of his best lyrics, without a doubt.

In the video for Someday's Gone, Tyson got abused pretty badly in there. How many retakes did you guys have to do to get the video in a single take? Did anyone end up with injuries?

TAAR: I think we did nine takes of the “Someday’s Gone” video. No injuries! It was a blast and something we were all very proud that we actually pulled off. We thought of the idea on Thursday, planned it out on Friday, shot it on Saturday, did all the post Sunday, and had it online by noon on Monday. All very DIY with our friends helping out. We’re getting ready to shoot the video for the first single from “Kids In The Street” called “Beekeeper’s Daughter,” which will be a full-on professional video production, and I actually think our professional video director man has a lot to live up to!

You guys also recently did a mash-up of Mean and chart-topping single, Gives You Hell, at the CMT Music Awards. Any chance of a future collaboration with Taylor Swift or artists from other genres?

TAAR: No plans. We’re just gearing up for a year of non-stop touring behind “Kids In The Street,” so that’s all we’re thinking about.

Aside from writing music, what have you guys been up to over the last year?

TAAR: That’s it! “Kids In The Street” has been our lives for the past year and half. We consume ourselves in what we do. When we work, nothing else exists. It’s how we like it.

Since 2011 is coming to an end, what's everyone's hoping for in 2012? Any new year resolutions?

TAAR: We’re just hoping to have a blast this year, finally playing shows again. We haven’t toured in almost two years, which is the longest we’ve been off the road. We’ve got a lot to make up for!

Last of all, do you have a message for your fans from Singapore and Asia?

TAAR: We always have the craziest, most fun shows in Asia. We hope to make it over there many times in the coming months!

So there you go! As we eagerly anticipate the boys visit, Kids in the Streets will drop in stores on Mar 27. Remember to catch the premiere of Beekeeper's Daughter in the upcoming episode of 90210 on Jan 24.

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