Transit @ Slam Dunk 2013

By Chris Marshman

We kicked off Slam Dunk 2013 by speaking to the guys in Transit. We talked about their home life, their fans and more!

You guys have been out with Man Overboard, how’s that been for you?

It’s cool. We just did two shows and it’s always a good time to play with them, they’re some of our oldest friends. The first time we ever came to the UK was with Man Overboard in 2010, so yeah it’s always a good time to tour and do shows with friends, especially such good ones.

So you guys go back quite far then?

Yeah, a little too far back! When we first started touring we’d always play each other’s shows. We would always drive down to New Jersey or they’d come to us, we did our first tour together. We’ve known them for like five or six years now.

What’s the main differences between the likes of Slam Dunk in the UK compared to ones you’d play in the US?

This is kinda like Warped tour, it has the same feel to it or Bamboozle or Skate and Surf. I like how this is a smaller proximity, there’s a bunch of stages and you can have fun and walk around the different stages and stuff.

Who are you looking forward to checking out?

We’re here with a vast majority of bands who we’ve toured with and we’re friends with, (The Story So Far, Fireworks, Four Year Strong, The Wonder Years) so it’s basically just a friend fest. Allister are playing our stage too so that’s gonna be interesting. I never got to see them so it should be cool.

You released ‘Young New England’ not too long back, how have you found the reaction to it so far?

Well, pretty much every record we’ve put out has been kind of different to the last. We try to do that on purpose so we’re not putting out the same old stuff and also to test ourselves and to make it new again every time. I would say compared to any of the other albums this one has been picking up the fastest and it’s been really cool. We’ve been getting a lot of requests to play new songs and that’s never really happened in the past, so we’ve had to add new songs into our set, more than we thought we were going to. Kids have been coming up to us after shows or on twitter telling us they wished we’d have played a certain song so it’s really more than you can ask for. A lot of times whenvyou put out a new record, people want to hear the old stuff because there’s been such a change but with this one it has been the opposite and we’re really psyched.

It’s a different sound compared to what you started out with, you were known originally maybe as a pop punk back which you’ve furthered into a more alternative rock type of band…

Yeah a little bit, we’ve never really been a full on pop punk band, our first full length is kind of hardcore indie with pop punk elements, so it doesn’t really feel like we’ve changed all that much as far as a band goes. The albums have different themes and different styles to them but we’ve always just mixed that with a lot of our influences and styles.

What influences have you brought to the new record?

A lot of 90’s alternative rock like Third Eye Blind, Goo Goo Dolls and Tom Petty, stuff like that. Basically it’s music we listened to when we were younger that we still like today that has been more of an influence on our stuff now. It feels like the new songs have more longevity, like we’ll play some older songs today and it kind of feels like you don’t really connect to it and we don’t want that to happen anymore so we’re trying to update our formulas.

It’s better to play songs that you enjoy playing and mean something to you…

Exactly, we started playing shows and touring when we were really young, so we kind of grew up playing in this band, so the older we get we obviously don’t like the same things that we liked when we were seventeen or eighteen. Our taste in music has matured as we did as people and that’s how it’s all come out I guess.

I spoke to the guys from Senses Fail last week and he said that if you revert back to an older sound it’s more like you’re keeping your fans happy rather than the band happy…

I feel like you’re losing anything that you have if you’re not making music you want to make, you have to be a leader not a follower.

What songs from the new album do you enjoy playing live?

‘Young New England’ is really fun to play because there’s always a sing-along, even when we don’t play it in Boston. It’s kind of a demanded song now, people get upset when we don’t play it, on the last tour we had it on, then we took it off and within three days people were complaining, so we have it back on our list now! So you have to please fans, you want them to have a good time because that’s why you’re doing this, it’s what it’s about. You have to listen to them sometimes but you have to pick and choose with what you agree with.

Talking about your fans, as you mentioned each album has had different styles, have you found yourselves losing older fans but gaining newer ones as you go along?

It’s happened with every record, especially with the last record where everyone was like “They’ve found their sound” and it’s like, No! What are you talking about?! We’re always trying to surprise ourselves and if it surprises us then it will surprise someone else and that means we’ve done our job. It’s not about just recycling and regurgitating the same stuff to make people happy because that’s a cop out, to me music is art and if you’re not surprised by what you create then don’t show up.

What’s coming up next for Transit?

We do Slam Dunk, then four shows with Tonight Alive and then we’re home, hanging out for the summer, get some sleep and catch up with old friends and family.

How big is the importance of managing to get home and reconnect with your family and friends?

We’re very close to home and our families, we all have really big families and a lot of our friends are mingled in with our other friends, it’s all kind of like its own community. It’s a small town turned into a big town, everyone knows each other where we’re from. So it’s gonna be really cool to get back there. It’s always good to be home, especially after being on the road for so long, it can take its toll on you. It’s the subtle things in life, the little things!


Try these three interviews

Interview: Greywind [Reading 2016]

Interview: Arcane Roots [Reading 2016]

Interview: Trash Boat [Reading 2016]