Alter The Press!


Interview: Mayday Parade

Whilst making their first trip overseas with the release of 'Anywhere But Here', Alter The Press managed to grab some time with Mayday Parade front man, Derek Saunders before their set at the London HMV Forum.

Derek spoke to ATP about the new album, signing to Atlantic Records, the "controversial" video for their new single 'Kids In Love' and more.

Alter The Press: This is your first time overseas with the release of 'Anywhere But Here'. How has it been so far?
Derek Saunders (vocals): It's been great, I'm just bummed it's the last show. The response has been really good.

ATP: How have the fans responded to the new songs live?
Derek: You know, it's the same as always, it's different in some places as it is others. I've noticed that there's actually a lot of people who sing along to the new stuff here, a lot of kids who ask me about songs off the new album, that we actually aren't playing on this set. It's a really good response over here and we're excited to see that.

ATP: The album got to number 31 on the Billboard chart. How was it, when you got given the good news?
Derek: That was awesome, that kind of stuff is just overwhelming because I still remember the days when we started out as a local band, just writing songs. We still feel like that, we just try to write the best songs we can, and that's all we do. So, to be successful like that, we are very grateful.

ATP: With this album you've signed to Atlantic Records. Why the switch from Fearless?
Derek: It was a collective thing; everyone thought it was time. Fearless were great about it, and that's awesome, because you hear a lot of awful stories, of bands being held back when making a switch over to a major label, but Fearless has been awesome, and great for everything. We had been talking to Atlantic for a while, and figured it was the right time to have, obviously, the bigger staff, promotion, budget and stuff like that.

ATP: Despite the mixed reviews the new album received compared to 'A Lesson In Romantics' (debut album), it's still been the band's most successful release to date.
Derek: We are all really proud of it, and obviously there is a lot of controversy because of Jason (Lancaster, ex-member lead vocals/guitars) leaving, and there is not so much back and forth singing type stuff, and I can understand that. I felt the same way, when other bands Iost a member. It's kind of hard to get your faith back in a band, but people have stuck with us through it all, which is awesome. We're always just going to keep going and write the best songs that we can.

ATP: The new music video for 'Kids In Love', dubbed "controversial." What was the story behind it?
Derek: We've done five videos and the first four are kind of what you would expect, the band performing live and the love story, which is kind of like what you always see nowadays. So we thought of doing something that no one would expect. Obviously, a lot of people aren't going to like it, it's very explicit. We also want to state, the things that people are doing in the video, are good or bad or whatever, we just wanted it to be more real. We're not really a part of the video; we are in it for a short split second, we didn't even see it until it was all done, cut and edited, and we think it's really cool and are really proud of it. Hopefully, people will look past whatever they don't like about it, and realize it's art; the director had the idea of doing this, and we wanted to go for it.

ATP: What do you think of the response you have been getting from it?
Derek: In all honesty, I'm surprised there has been so much good stuff that has been said. I felt like there would be nothing just, 'Oh my god, this is trashy, this is disgusting, this is trash!' There is a lot of that, but, overall, it’s 'I love this; this is real and true. It's a big step doing this.' It's gained a big respect for the band.

ATP: This has to be the only thing YouTube is hosting with nudity in it.
Derek: I've noticed that as well, and that kind of blows my mind. I don't know how we got passed that, because YouTube has always never been allowed to have nudity. You do have to be 18+ to view it, but even so, I've never seen anything on YouTube that has been released, and that kind of boggled my mind.

ATP: With a lot of your fans being under 18, have you had a backlash of angry parents, or is that still to come?
Derek: I haven't had any responses from any parents yet, but a lot of people have said; 'I like the video but I wouldn't want my younger brother/sister to watch it,' stuff like that. I imagine there will be a bunch of parents, once they catch wind of it and see it. It's kind of unfortunate, because that video really is intended for 18+, I wouldn't want my twelve-year-old cousin to watch it either. But, I can understand, and unfortunately, there is no great way of really avoiding it; it is what it is.

ATP: Do you have plans for another single/video?
Derek: As of now, no, but I'd definitely like to, on this album cycle. If it was up to me, I'd like to do the song, 'Save Your Heart', it's a ballady, powerful song. That's the song I would like to see turned into a single or video, but it's not up to me at all, so we'll see.

ATP: What's planned after this UK tour?
Derek: We have five days off at home, and then it's more touring. We are doing Warped Tour this summer. Up until then, we are doing a lot of smaller, b-market dates, with A Rocket To The Moon, Sing It Loud and Sparks The Rescue. It's going to be a lot of fun. I met the dudes from A Rocket To The Moon on the 'Take Action' tour, and they are just the coolest dudes. After Warped Tour, we are trying to come back for Reading/Leeds, and some more overseas stuff. The rest of 2010 will be focused on touring, and being on the road. We want to come back over and we hope it pans out. We are good friends with the dudes in You Me At Six, and we have been talking about doing some touring with them over here, that would be awesome! Like I said, it's too soon to say.

'Anywhere But Here' is out now on Atlantic Records (US).

- Jon Ableson

Alter The Press!