Interview: New Found Glory [January 2015]

By Adam Rosario

Sitting in the confines of The Forum’s dressing room upstairs, with Jordan and Chad from New Found Glory, was a surreal experience. Read on for our full interview.

Hey guys, how’re you both?

Chad: Awesome man.
Jordan: Very well thank you.

So you’re currently on and about to end the ‘Pop Punk’s Not Dead’ Tour. How’s it been for you?

Chad: Yeah, there’s a lot of cool bands on the tour, and a bunch of our friends so I’d say we’ve been hanging out way more on this tour than the one we just did in the States, which is cool.

Do you think that’s because you’re all playing the same sort of genre?

Chad: I think it’s because we’re all kinda in love with each other. We are missing home though, so we’re finding affection in each other! Especially with the holidays, having been here for Thanksgiving.

Was this the first Thanksgiving you’ve done away from home?

Chad: Man, we’ve been a band for so long now, that I don’t remember the last Thanksgiving I was at home! Last year, I think we were on a plane…
Jordan: Yeah we were on a plane, going to Australia.
Chad: The fall is always a popular time to tour, so I rarely get Halloween and I rarely get Thanksgiving…

Having just released your 8th album, ‘Resurrection’, how does it feel now, knowing that you’re the so called ‘Elder-Statesmen’ of your genre?

Chad: The Elder-Statesmen?

Like, you’re hitting that level of Green Day and blink-182 where you’re becoming a main influence on newer bands.

Chad: Well, they’re like Grandpa Statesmen, and we’re just like, older handsome young statesmen.
Jordan: It’s funny because we’re pretty close in age to some of those bands that are, y’know, influenced by us.
Chad: We just started really young and I think it’s cool, looking back and seeing the sort of happy accident that happened. When we started we wanted to combine West Coast Punk and East Coast Hardcore into one style and New Found Glory came out. That all kept inspiring newer bands, and whether you like that style of music or not, New Found Glory’s put it in a different kind of direction, and it’s cool, because we never intended that. We were just combining elements of music that we liked.

You can definitely hear that on the new album, especially with the heavier riffs and the harsher harmonies. With the current tour lineup, do you think that they’re the next up and coming breed of pop punk?

Chad: Yeah, I watched The Story So Far, and I think it’s cool because they don’t sound like New Found Glory. I think that’s important. It’s always important to state your influences, but not sound like them. I think that that’s why we had success, when everyone was trying to sound like their favourite bands, and we didn’t. We created our own style and we can point out where our influences are. That’s what’s cool about The Story So Far, I see them playing and I think “Whoa, I never would have done that in a song” and they did. They have their own spin and there’s gonna be tons of bands who come out saying they listened to The Story So Far, so it’s a nice little constant domino effect. As long as bands have the right attitudes, it’s cool to see.

In recent pop punk music releases, like The Story So Far and Neck Deep, there seems to be a bit more of a rough side.

Chad: Neck Deep to me sounds a little more on the poppy side.
Jordan: They’ve got that double bass, that drum stuff going on.

And what are your opinions on Candy Hearts? Do you think they’ll be massive?

Chad: I don’t know, it’s so hard to be ‘massive’ but the thing about Candy Hearts is they’re on the tour and they’re getting thrown in with the pop punk label, but I think there’s an element to the band which is very 90s alternative. One of the reasons I like them is that they have a grungey, alternative punk vibe. I think Mariel, the singer, has really cool lyrics that a lot of people will like reading, especially females, because she has a different outlook on life.

Moving onto a more controversial topic: since 2012, rock music has been declared as being ‘dead’ by Simon Cowell and recently by Gene Simmons: what are your opinions?

Chad: They’re not the only ones to have said it, even Jimmy Ivy and Leroy Geffen (Head of Interscope) came in and had a meeting with us and said, “I care about pop, rap, the internet, something else, and then rock”. It was the fifth thing on the list of what was important to them and the label. And we were like, “Good to know, glad we’ve just made a rock record!” I hate to sound silly and patriotic but rock music has always been a ‘for the people, by the people’ kinda thing. It’s never been about conforming to norms, so it’s such a contradiction when people are like “Rock isn’t rock anymore!” and “It’s gone!” That’s fine, it’ll come back again. In our last interview we were talking about Nirvana and how Kurt Cobain didn’t set out to get put on the radio. He was a troubled teen who had issues and wrote songs about it. The next thing you know, everyone else who had the same issues with self-esteem heard the album and bought it. And I think that that will always happen no matter what it is. It might not be all over the radio right now, but music is always changing, so for anyone to say that rock music is dead is stupid. I thought 80s cheesey dance was dead but you turn the radio on now and it sounds like CNC Music Factory again and that died a long time ago, and now you hear the beat and it’s like [sings] ‘GOOD VIBRATIONS’ and it’s the same music.
Jordan: I take Reading and Leeds as the perfect example, for you have 50,000 people screaming to rock bands, the whole day, and some of those bands aren’t even on the radio.

After these last shows, you’re off to Europe next?

Jordan: We’ve got like ten shows.
Chad: Yeah, like eight shows or something. We get home 11th December, hang out for a few months. Starting out in February, back on tour again.

Have you got more UK tour plans coming up?

Chad: We know we’ll definitely be back next year, but we can’t really announce it yet or we’ll be shot! We’re definitely going to promote this record for a really long time. Drive it down your throats.

Well, I’ve had the album in my top albums this year so you’ve done that for me! Any ideas on festivals for next year after talking about Reading and Leeds?

Chad: Don’t know yet, we’ll see. We usually do festivals so we’ll see.

I was surprised you weren’t at Reading and Leeds this year. You’d have been perfect for the Lock Up Stage, especially with Jimmy Eat World on there this year.

Chad: That would’ve been awesome. I didn’t realise they were on that stage.

They played ‘Futures’ in full for the 10th Anniversary, having played a main stage set. Having been to the UK numerous times, do you have a standout UK memory?

Jordan: Yeah, well for me, when I think of the UK I think of all of us hanging out, then all the other bands all hanging out, how we’re all walking the streets at night, it’s cold, everywhere’s closed, we’re looking for a kebab shop or a pub. The fun memories of shouting in the streets late at night are the best.
Chad: I remember the memory of being here at The Forum, we shot our DVD here. The ‘This Disaster’ DVD, and the power went out. So it happened live on the DVD.

Moving onto tonight’s show: are you excited for the London shows?

Chad: No, I’m over it! I’m kidding. I’m so excited man, we’ve been waiting for the London shows. We put this show onsale and it sold well so we added the second night, so I’m really excited. A lot of diehard fans are here in London.

Have you had a favourite show of the tour so far?

Jordan: Manchester was awesome and Leeds was awesome, they were my two favourites.
Chad: Manchester and Leeds were really crazy.

I like to end interviews with a funny question, so would you rather be attacked by a horse sized duck or 50 duck sized horses?

Chad: A horse duck?
Jordan: It’s really funny if you think about it.
Chad: Or 50 duck sized horses? 50 duck sized horses would be way cuter.
Jordan: I agree.
Chad: A bunch of baby horses running at you.
Jordan: [neighs] Kinda like My Little Ponies! They’re all trying to stampede you, but they’re all just on your foot! [laughs]

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Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]