Fireworks Magazine Online 59 - Interview with Lansdowne

LANSDOWNE


Touted as the best unsigned modern rock band around, Boston’s Lansdowne feel that they have a point to prove…or do they? Shunning the major labels in favour of a more DIY approach they seem relaxed about it and comfortable in their own skin, happy to make music for their considerable fan-base whenever they feel that the time is right. It’s an ethos than many bands are now turning to, using social networks and good old fashioned honest touring to promote themselves. Recording, marketing and videos are financed by the fans. Lansdowne successfully did this via Kickstarter for their superb debut album ‘Blue Collar Revolver’ and now a new five track EP has been through the same process and is being released. Anyone who thinks that Lansdowne is a band who plays second fiddle to the big boys in the genre should think again as the material on ‘No Home But The Road’ is as good as anything that you are likely to hear within the scene.

Mike Newdeck caught up with drummer and band PR coordinator Glenn Mungo to chat about the new EP.

Tell me about the new EP and how it perhaps differs from what you’ve done before?

With this record we wrote what we wanted, instead of trying to write certain types of songs. This was the first time we actually sat down and wrote with no restrictions and we think people will really dig the sound of this record.

Originally it was going to be an album so why has it become an EP?

We decided on the EP approach because we wanted to be able to give fans more music more often. Some bands sit on records for too long and we felt if we did an EP it would allow us to always be writing and you can really give the songs more attention. It’s hard to tell when the time is right or not to release new music. As an unsigned band you have a lot more flexibility when it comes to making that decision. What we do know is we want our fans to always have music to be listening to and since we are always writing it’s a nice dichotomy.

You’ve chosen not to get involved with a major label - why is that?

We have not found a situation that seemed like it was the right fit for us yet. We are passionate about our career and we like that we have complete control over both the business decisions and creative decisions we make. In this industry you live and die by your fans and ours have helped give us a career without the support of a major.

Have you ever been approached by a major label?

We have been approached by labels before. The biggest problems we ran into were the terms of the deal. If we are going to sign a deal it’s going to be because we want to, not because we feel like we have to. At the moment we’re doing things the way we want and we control the music that we output. We haven’t got anyone making demands on us.

Are you happy with the moniker “the greatest unsigned rock band?”

It’s definitely an honour to be given that label. Being an unsigned band is a grind and you have to bust your ass day in and day out. The bands that get complacent with where they are or feel like they deserve more than they are getting are the bands people forget about. You have to stay hungry!

Is it fair to describe your music as modern rock?

I think so. At the end of the day it’s Rock and Roll. Its music we love to write and play and music we feel the fans can relate and jam out to. It’s us and it comes from the heart. We hit the studio with producer Mike Watts to do this record. I actually drove four hours to Long Island to meet with him on a whim. The meeting was supposed to take 15-20 min because he was in a session and we wound up chatting for over 90 minutes. We knew he was the guy to help us bring a more mature sound to this record and he did just that. He really let us use our chops on this record and brought out the best in Jon and his vocals, as well as allowing the guys and I to get creative with the rhythms, chords and parts we were playing. It was a really killer experience to work in the studio with him and his team. Mike also mixed it and we think it sounds pretty good, we had input of course but you have to let a producer do is stuff, after all that’s what you pay him to do.

To read the full double page spread on Lansdowne, where Glenn discusses live performances, working on a limited budget and his take on the current music scene, you need Fireworks #59:

Lansdowne-Spread

 

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Lansdowne-Interview

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