Alter The Press!


Interview: Stay

Since last talking to Alter The Press! last year, New England-based pop-rockers Stay have expanded their line-up and have become a sextet. In addition the band have played shows alongside The Maine, You Me and Everyone We Know and We Are The In Crowd and more importantly they have been writing and recording a full-length entitled 'American Cherry Bomb'.

Alter The Press! caught up with the band to discuss the line-up changes, the new album, working with producer John Naclerio (My Chemical Romance, Brand New, Just Surrender), their future plans and more.

Alter The Press: Since we last spoke, the line-up of the band has expanded. Why and how did these changes come about?
Stay: I think the main reasoning behind the line-up additions was just our desire to try something new and enhance the live show. We've been rehearsing non-stop recently and I think the live show is going to be on a different level because of the line-up additions. Also, we brought in Alex Gaynor on lead guitar and he is a great vocalist. Having a few strong singers in the band can really help to maximize the impact we make on fans from a live show perspective. We're pretty excited.

ATP: How have these changes affected the bands music style?
Stay: I think so, here and there. Andrew Elliott (Guitar/Keys/Vocals) and my singer Anthony Rainville (Vocals) are the primary writers for the band. They collaborated on a few of the songs for the new album and I think the results are great. There are songs that sound similar to our past material from the Games With Girls EP and the Summer Sampler, but their collaborations also resulted in something new from Stay, especially within songs such as "Arson In The Suburbs" and "Machine Gun Summer".

ATP: PureVolume and named you one of the best unsigned bands of 2009. You're still unsigned. Are you looking for a label?
Stay: We're definitely motivated and excited to work with a record label. We're taking things one step at a time to be sure to find the right fit for us. Regardless of a label, we've got some great things happening behind the scenes and we're very confident in the future.

ATP: Your upcoming record, 'American Cherry Bomb' was produced by John Neclerio who has worked with My Chemical Romance and Brand New. What was the working relationship like with John in the studio?
Stay: John's an awesome engineer and a good friend of everyone in the band. We really like working with him and I think he really killed it on these new songs. He's always been super supportive of our band; it's also great to be working with someone who sees eye to eye with what you're trying to do and is confident in what the band can bring to the table.

ATPL With 'American Cherry Bomb' how has the bands sound changed and developed?
Stay: I think we took more chances with this album. It's not as conservative as our last releases. There are songs that are more out of the box and ones that push boundaries, especially our own "Stay" boundaries. The lyrics are probably going to be the biggest surprise for many people; they're much more real and are based upon many of the obstacles we've faced over the past year or so as a band.

ATP: Are there any particular bands or albums that have influenced 'American Cherry Bomb'?
Stay: I think Third Eye Blind and Fall Out Boy influenced us the most. However, I don't think our influences necessarily changed that much throughout the writing process for this album. We just took more chances with the writing and grew that much more confident in what we could do. I think it's a transitional phase that most bands go through. For us, it happened with this new album. For other bands, it might not happen two or three albums down the road.

ATP: Were there any particularly memorable moments on your recent tours with The Maine and You, Me & Everyone We Know that you could share?
Stay: The show with The Maine was a cool experience. We've always been big fans of their music so it was great to see them perform a special acoustic set. I don't think any of us had ever seen them perform acoustically. The tour with You, Me & Everyone We Know was awesome, they are great people and very deserving of their success. It's tough to narrow down the tour to specific moments but there were quite a few drunk nights. All of the shows in Florida were amazing too.

ATPL You're hitting the road with Romance on a Rocketship in the Spring. What are you looking forward to most about this tour?
Stay: We're really excited about the tour with Romance On A Rocketship. For The Foxes will also be on this tour. It's always great to get out on the road with label bands and I think both of these bands will become good friends throughout the tour. We're just pumped to be hitting the road again, especially during the spring time. We'll be announcing all of the tour dates on Tuesday, March 1st!

ATP: Will 'American Cherry Bomb' be available on this tour?
Stay: Yes! We'll be selling advance copies of the album, which will only be available on this tour so be sure to come on out to a show and pick up the new CD.

ATP: Are you excited to play the Never Say Never festival? Are there any bands you're hoping to catch perform?
Stay: Very excited! Thanks again to everyone involved with Never Say Never Festival for giving us the amazing opportunity. I think my band is most pumped to see Neon Trees perform live, there are quite a few Neon Trees fans in Stay. Other than that, it will be cool to see Breathe Electric, Down With Webster, You, Me & Everyone We Know, We Are The In Crowd, and Phone Calls From Home at the festival.

ATP: What are Stay's plans for the summer?
Stay: Tour! We'll be on the road for the majority of the summer, I'm sure. Our plans are still being sorted but we're hoping for a full US tour for this summer. We really want to get back out to the west coast and perform in those markets. We're going to keep working hard.

ATP: Anything else you'd like fans to know?
We'll be announcing our spring tour dates on Tuesday, March 1st! Keep checking back to our websites for other updates as well. Huge thank you to everyone at Alter The Press for this interview. Thanks to everyone for their continued support, 2011 is going to be a big year.

Stay on MySpace, Facebook, Purevolume, Tumblr and Twitter.

Words by Sean Reid. Assisted by Janay Kinney.

Alter The Press!