Elway [August 2015]

By Lee Male

Elway have just released their new album ‘Better, Whenever’ so we decided to have a little chat with them about the release, Riot Fest and …. Snoop Dogg.

What are you most proud of, musically speaking, on the album “Better Whenever”?

We took a much simpler approach to recording this record. We recorded in Fort Collins with our buddy Jason Larson from Arliss Nancy at a studio that is, compared with Atlas, very bare bones. The production, as a result, is more lo-fi and deliberate. The drums aren’t chopped up and sampled, the guitar and vocal tracks are straight takes, and it sounds a great deal more like the imperfect slacker band that we actually are. The tone and production of the album is as accurate a depiction of our sound as we could have hoped, and for that I am proud.

What does the phrase “Better Whenever” mean to you all?

We are at the point in our career (ha) as musicians and in our personal lives where we haven’t got much to prove to anyone else. The phrase means, at least when divorced from the context in which the song was written, that we will be the band and the people we want to be on our own terms and in our own timeline.

What have been the most significant influences in the writing of “Better Whenever’?

Aside from my own extremely vain sense of abject misery and lack of self-respect, I think we were all seshing quite a bit of Pedro The Lion. We wanted to make a record that nods simultaneously to the Midwestern punk template from who’s loins we were birthed and the sound we are presently after, which is in many ways totally antithetical to where we’ve been.

Has your method of writing new material altered in anyway over the years?

It all starts with an acoustic guitar, a notebook, and something that I perceive as tragic. My writing style, I dare brazenly say, has only gotten more fluid and honest the older and more read I get. The process remains ostensibly the same, though.

If this was your first ever release as a band which track would you want people to hear first and why?

I think the song Delano is a good mixture of where we’ve been as a band and where we are presently. “Better Whenever” is my favorite though, for reasons both personal and (again, ha) professional.

On your Facebook page you state your band interests as “Fred Durst and the singer of Korn rap battling” What do you think Fred’s opening line would be in this hypothetical battle?

You’ll be in a dream of ecstasy to know that you needn’t speculate about the answer to this question. Anyone who can get their hands on a copy of Korn’s seminal album ‘Follow The Leader’ can hear said rap battle any time their heart desires. I recommend bumping it in your bedroom beneath the vinyl Nine Inch Nails tapestry you begged your mom to order you out of the Metal Edge magazine mail order and weep sorrowfully at the world.

Congratulations on being on the Riot Fest line up for 2015, who are you most excited to be sharing the stage with and why?

Snoop Dogg, because it’s fucking Snoop Dogg.

Will you be adapting your setlist especially for Riot Fest?

I imagine we’ll make a point of including a handful of new songs, along with some old classics and maybe a few we haven’t played in years. It’ll be a mixed bag.

Does a large festival like Riot Fest cause more nerves knowing that it will not be mostly fans of yours in the audience?

Nah, at this point in my life I couldn’t be bothered to care much. I am proud of my band and what we’ve managed to accomplish. I cannot, I shall not, I do not owe the casual festival-goer a goddamn thing. If 10,000 people are stoked on what we are as a band, it’ll be a hell of a party. If 6 people are stoked, we could play some cee-lo or scrabble.

Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]