They’re the kids who are dead inside; but they’re the ones who feel alive!
Since releasing ‘Never Happy, Ever After’ last year, As It Is have gone from strength to strength and they haven’t looked back. The pop/punk rockers have played shows all over the world and they just recently put out a deluxe edition of their debut album.
We caught up with lead singer Patty Walters backstage in Manchester earlier this week. In our exclusive interview, he spoke about: working on As It Is’ second album, supporting Sleeping With Sirens, being lyrically inspired whilst cooking lasagne and much more.
You can read some highlights from the interview and listen to our chat in full below!
You’re currently playing live shows around the UK – how’ve you found the tour so far?
“It’s been incredible; this is technically the first ever UK headline tour we’ve done and the response has been mad. Tonight’s sold out along with a couple of other shows and yeah, we can’t complain. We brought over some really good friends to do the tour with us and we’re just having an incredible time.”
On the tour, you’re playing ‘This Mind Of Mine’ and ‘Never Happy, Ever After’ in full – are there any songs that you particularly enjoy performing live?
“Yeah, definitely. We haven’t played ‘Bitter, Broken Me’ in a long time which is arguably the fastest song we’ve written so it’s nice to play a song with that much kind of raw energy again. There’s a couple of songs that, until this tour, we’d never played live so that was very interesting trying to figure those out and wrap our heads around playing them live.”
Are there any funny stories that you can tell us from life on the road?
“Oh my goodness! Well, even as recently as last night, we have FIFA in the tour van and it gets very competitive. We got quite bored and wanted to up the ante a little so Ben, arguably the worst FIFA player after myself because I am the worst, played Andy but Andy was sitting in the front and couldn’t see the screen so he had Foley guiding him; being his eyes and telling him where to move the joystick and when to do what. The two played each other and Andy gave it a good little effort for not being able to see anything he did for 90 minutes. Maybe it doesn’t sound as hilarious as it was but I was crying and in actual pain from laughing that hard. It was ridiculous; absolutely absurd.”
Last month, you released the deluxe edition of ‘Never Happy, Ever After.’ For people who haven’t yet heard the record, how would you describe your sound and style?
“We’re a dual vocal band so we do take inspiration from bands like Taking Back Sunday; both kind of that dynamic but also musically. I think a lot of what we write channels bands like: Jimmy Eat World, The Early November and The Starting Line – bands that we ourselves grew up listening to. I’d say that is kind of musically what we go for. Lyrically, we go for maybe just the most honest and confessional lyrics that we can possibly write. We really just admit to everything and kind of get the crazy and poison out of our heads.”
You wrote your latest single ‘Winter’s Weather’ while you were out on the road – have you been penning any new tracks during this tour?
Patty: “We definitely have. Yeah, I was up way too late on my laptop working on a bridge that we started at the venue yesterday in Sheffield. We’ve been getting the album kind of closer and closer to being ready to take to the studio. I think we’re really excited about what we’re writing; and working on the road has produced some very interesting concepts. You have to kind of work around the fact that you’re somewhere new every day. Your setup’s always a little different; we had Foley singing some kind of background vocals into a bin because we liked the sound of it. So yeah, it’s getting weird.”
CelebMix: “Do you reckon we’ll hear that singing into a bin on the album?”
Patty: “I can almost definitely promise you won’t; but I wish you could because it was spectacular.”
As a whole, your album features lots of deep and meaningful lyrics. The line ‘I look for love in everybody else, ’cause I tried but I can’t love myself’ is one of our favourites. Are there any lyrics that you’re particularly proud of writing?
“Personally, I love… it’s the title of the track but I like the idea of the final track: ‘You, The Room & The Devil On Your Shoulder.’ The kind of imagery behind it’s just you, the room and the devil on your shoulder really kind of effectively paints that loneliness and that desperation that you feel when you are so acutely kind of depressed and desperate and having those thoughts. I dunno, it just does it for me. That was one of those lyrics that I was very pleased with.”
What’s the process behind making an As It Is track – do you usually start with lyrics first or the instrumentals?
“It truly does depend; there’s songs that start with lyrics and melodies. I think more times we start with just music but with songs like ‘Sorry’, I started singing the end of the chorus ‘you were always his and all I ever was was sorry’ – that came to me when I was cooking a lasagne. I was like ‘this is actually a nice lyric and a nice melody’ so I like abandoned my lasagne for a while to develop this song and start kind of forming it. Then it became a song on the album and my lasagne was ruined but that’s quite alright; I’d rather have a decent song than a lasagne for one evening.”
What does the rest of 2016 have in store for As It Is?
“A lot of writing and a lot of recording. We’re kind of starting to piece together our touring schedule so we’ve got a couple of festivals in Europe and some headline shows. We’re jumping on a couple of shows with Sleeping With Sirens and Tonight Alive and stuff. Yeah, right now, I’m just so very obsessed and fixated on finishing this record. It’s kind of dominating my mental capacity.”
If you could leave a message for your fans, what would you say?
“We love you guys so much. You make doing this possible but even more so fun. It’s been nice getting to know you guys and seeing you guys at the shows. If we haven’t met you yet, we sincerely look forward to it so thank you so very much for supporting us.”
The deluxe edition of ‘Never Happy, Ever After’ is currently available here on iTunes. As well as featuring all eleven tracks from the standard edition, the re-release also includes: the band’s incredible new single ‘Winter’s Weather’ and three acoustic recordings.
Over the next three days, As It Is will be taking to the stage at Slam Dunk. You can see where else Patty, Ben, Patrick, Andy and Alistair will be performing later this year here on their official website; new gigs will be added as and when they’re confirmed.
Whilst on the road, As It Is are writing a follow-up to their hugely successful debut album. As Patty said, they’ve been working on some interesting concepts so it certainly sounds like we’re in for a treat. We can’t wait to hear to hear the band’s sophomore record.
Which is your favourite As It Is song? Have you seen the guys live before? Let us know over on Twitter @CelebMix or leave a message in the comments section below!