Alter The Press!


Interview: You, Me And Everyone We Know

With their debut album and forthcoming headline US tour on the cards, You, Me And Everyone We Know are finally ready to step into the limelight after two years away. A period which saw various line-up changes and more. Now they have found a home in Doghouse Records, the Washington group are set to release 'Some Things Don't Wash Out' next month.

ATP! spoke to vocalist Ben Liebsch about the line-up changes, signing to Doghouse, the new album, their forthcoming US tour and more.

Alter The Press: You, Me And Everyone We Know has experienced a few line-up changes. Is it hard to adjust to new members?
You, Me And Everyone We Know: It was always people leaving that was tough. I mean, when someone joins the band the problem you have is solved, so its all good feelings. In addition, we don't just grab anyone off the street. We do our best to make sure whoever we're sharing the road with, is a great person who meshes well with everyone. We're still friends with everyone who has played for the band, and they support what we do.

ATP: You guys are originally from Washington D.C. Does D.C have a large indie music scene?
YMAEWK: We "started" the band in DC yes, but thats really just where everybody lived. I think we played maybe ten shows in 4 months in the Baltimore/DC Metro area before we started touring. D.C. is tricky because nobody actually lives IN DC. It's tough to cultivate a following there. There is a great history with Hardcore in the area and there are some great bands coming from DC but it's pretty sparse from what I still know.

ATP: Back in 2007 you announced work on a debut full-length, what caused the delay?
YMAEWK: Life happens. Van fires, horrible management, member changes, bad song writing due to the aforementioned stresses, and so on. We didn't want to release a full length, until we wrote what we thought was our best work to date. I think we've done that now.

ATP: What can fans expect from 'Some Things Don't Wash Out'?
YMAEWK: Our new record is going to be a true combination of the sounds on our first two EPs. We took what loved about both of them and combined them, while also trying to write more intelligent pop music.

ATP: The record is being released through Doghouse. How did this partnership come together? Had you talked another other labels?
YMAEWK: Contrary to popular belief, we've never been offered another record deal. I guess we're good at looking like we have our shit together on the surface, but for a long time we weren't sure what we wanted and we couldn't hold down a steady line-up. Plus we were horrible live for a while. I like to think this stuff has changed for good now.

We've been flirting with Doghouse for a few years now. It's always been a dream label for us. They work hard for their bands and they don't make a big deal about themselves. Like I said before, our existence was very tumultuous and they kept people waiting in the wings until we finally got our shit together. We sent them the new stuff we were working on, and they dug it and asked if they could put out the record. It's a true partnership, which I love.

ATP: Some of the material on 'Some Things Don't Wash Out' was written three years ago. Did you have to rework those songs at all for them to flow with the newer material?
YMAEWK: What I actually said was that we/I've been working on some of these songs for three years. You know, sometimes you don't have the life experience to finish a song. Something you want to write about, but you haven't quite actually lived yet. Rico did re-work "Bootstraps" which was a wreck when I first brought it to the table. He did a stellar job. I am not a musician. I am lucky to keep the company I do.

ATP: Was the recording process of the full-length different from that of the EPs?
YMAEWK: Well our two EPs were very "get in get out" situations. We were very much coming down to the wire while working on both of those. I remember not finishing recording 'Party for the Grown and Sexy' until two weeks before the release date. I also remember being at the studio at one AM on the last day of recording 'So Young, So Insane', adding various bells and whistles. Trevor went about this recording process in the best way I could have hoped for. We sat around and talked about every aspect of every song. I don't think I've ever been asked to sit down and read aloud the lyrics to songs, and explain them all before beginning to record them. It was very therapeutic for me in a sense, putting me back in the moment or mindframe that drew those words from me in the first place.

ATP: You're asking fans to participate in the making of the video for "Some Things Don't Wash Out" by contributing their own footage. How did that idea come about?
YMAEWK: The people that work for us brought it up and we were all about it from the start. I think it's going to turn out fantastic.

ATP: Last year you guys toured with Forgive Durden and did 28 shows in 33 days. What was that like? Would you do a run like that again?
YMAEWK: It was amazing. We made great friends on that tour. Bonds that arent breaking anytime soon. We are road dogs, we will play a year without a day off if we could get that booked.

ATP: Speaking of touring you're just coming to the end of The Bigger Lights tour. Has that been fun for you guys?
YMAEWK: The tour was alot of fun. We drank way too much and slept way too little. We jammed with The Graduate every night at the end of their set. We're very lucky to have never had to be on tour with shitty dudes and dudettes with egos and whatnot. Knock on wood...

ATP: September sees you embarking on your own headline tour with Queens Club and Take Cover. This is your third time out with Take Cover, what's it like touring with them?
YMAEWK: Our first tour with Take Cover really changed how I thought about touring. I had never really bonded with a band to such extent before and to be honest, I dont think ever since. We have a blast with them and we keep taking them on tour because they deserve the exposure. They work hard and they do it all for the right reasons, which is not the case with all the bands. Any band bitching about being on tour, doesn't deserve the honor of being on the road. Our lives are a fucking vacation. They get that and we love touring with that kind of band.

ATP: You've also teamed up with Smartpunk for this tour. How did that come together?
YMAEWK: We were real flattered when we found out Smartpunk was coming to us with all these great ideas about how to make our pre-order and cd release more successful. I guess somewhere along the way we decided to jump into bed together, for both parts of our headlining run. It's been great so far, O am grateful that people believe in what and how we are doing things, and want to help us succeed.

ATP: What are some of YMAEWK's future goals? Any plans to tour the UK?
YMAEWK: At this point, everything that happens from here on out is a bonus. This time last year I didn't know if this record would ever see the light of day. Now it's coming out on Doghouse, the label we've wanted to sign with since the start, people are talking and asking about the band, we're touring regularly again. Life cant get much better. Although, I would love to see the UK in 2011. Let's cross our fingers...

ATP: Is there anything else you'd like to add?
YMAEWK: I want to thank you for taking the time to ask these questions, for believing in and caring about our band. We didn't expect any of this stuff to happen to us, ever really. We are amazed daily at what we've been able to do with words I write, when I'm having a hard time with something I'm not comfortable talking about. I also want to thank everyone who reads this, tells a friend about us, and eventually comes to a show. Your support means more than you could ever know.

'Some Things Don't Wash Out' by You, Me and Everyone We Know is released on October 12th through Doghouse Records.

You, Me and Everyone We Know on MySpaceand Twitter.

Janay Kinney

Alter The Press!