Interview: Rebuilder [July 2015]

By Lais

We had a great chat with Boston punk band Rebuilder recently about their new album ‘Rock & Roll In America’, getting psyched to get back on the road, and generally being psyched about everything they’ve achieved so far.

Hey guys, how’s it going? You’ve recently released your album, ‘Rock & Roll In America’ (which is great, by the way). How’s it been going down?

Thank you! The reaction has been great so far, which has been more than we could have asked for. The album has been a time capsule of the last year and a half for all of us, so having it out has been a relief.

How would you describe the sound of the album to someone who hasn’t heard it before?

I would say it’s the punk rock you grew up listening to when you were younger (Epitaph, Fat Wreck Chords stuff) but has the maturity to catch up to you now. At least I hope so. It’s the rush of a kick flip over the anxiety of your bank account overdrafting. Or maybe the 23 tracks of a Punk-O-Rama comp melted into 11 songs.

Tell us about the album making process.

Writing the record was a mixture of us coming together in a room and sharing ideas. Some songs were close to fully formed when brought to the group, while some came from the ground up. The four of us playing as a band for a few years now has made it a smoother process for sure. As far as the recording process Jay Maas is, for me personally, one of the easiest people to work with. This was our first shot at a full length album so we came at it as prepared as we felt we could be.

How did you decide on the album title? What does it mean to you?

We wanted to call it like we see it – we are an American band who wrote a rock and roll record. We didn’t want to come off as sluggish with the title, but at the same time we didn’t want to overshadow or underplay the songs themselves. It was meant to be a true introduction. Also, ‘Rebuilder II’ would have sucked, so we had to go to the drawing board…

Have you been playing many of the new songs live?

Sure have! Even before the recording process we’d already started playing some of the songs live. We were fortunate to have a two-week long run of shows to road test the songs before we hopped into Jay’s studio. Every setlist we do we try to make sure there’s a certain flow, so that was really important to us to find that flow for the album as well. I think playing the songs live so much before going to the studio helped us do that.

What are your plans now that the album is out?

Tour, tour, then tour some more. We’re always searching for any and all ways to expose the record to new audiences. With everything that we’ve put into this album, it’s definitely not a time to stay quiet or lay in the shadows, we want to share it as much as possible.

You have a tour coming up in August/September, right? And you’re playing Fest this year. How do you find life on the road?

We do have the tour coming up and it’s going to be such a relief to be back on the road again! Life on the road is easy when you are doing it with your closest friends. The long drives aren’t too bad when you add iced coffee and playing music for 30 minutes every night into the mix. We call it “the poor man’s vacation.”

What are you most looking forward to this year?

We played out of state a few weeks back and the crowd was going off, they were singing the new songs louder than we were. From the very first time I ever penned a lyric, that was all I ever wanted; for the words to be screamed back at me. If that can happen more and more, then I’ll be psyched. And of course, I’m also very much looking forward to Fest! It’s the perfect punk rock vacation and it comes at such a great time in the year. I am beyond thankful to be able to experience it again, especially considering the short amount of time we’ve been a band.

Where do you guys see yourselves in five years? What is your ultimate goal?

We see ourselves doing what we’ve done the previous five years; still playing music. Hopefully it’s with the same group of friends, working on making another album, maybe also doing larger tours.  What we’ve always done, but growing.  From day one this band has been about being honest and doing what feels most natural. We’ll have to let the next five years speak for themselves when the time comes, but I suppose the ultimate goal is to stick to those same goals we agreed on from the start!


Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]