Mayday Parade recently stopped by PureVolume's NYC HQ hot off the release of their self-titled new record. Not only were we lucky enough to be serenaded by a couple emotional acoustic takes on their tunes -- which, we'd rhapsodize about their incredible harmonizing abilities, but you can just go ahead and hear it for yourself -- the guys also chatted with us for a solid PV Q&A about their origins, writing Mayday Parade in a Florida beach house, and their disparate influences. Check it out.
PureVolume: What made you feel like this, your third album, should be self-titled?
Derek Sanders, vocals: It was a lot of things, but in the past few years we’ve learned a lot about this band and who we are and what we want and don’t want. I feel that we understand who we are and that’s kind of the statement, that this is who we are now. We had a lot of drama and stuff between a member who left, so to get past all of that -- Mayday Parade is who we are now.
PureVolume: How was living and writing the new album in a Florida beach house?
Sanders: It was absolutely the right way to do it. It’s the first time we’ve tried anything like that before. Normally when we’d record we’d spend a few hours together to practice and record, but in the beach house we were able to spend a month there and work 24/7 and vibe and be creative. The fact that it was a beach didn’t really have anything to do with it. It was in January and we only went down to the water once or twice. Most of it was just kind of getting away from everything. But it was pretty cool; you’d go down to the beach and there were dolphins and stuff chasing fish and running them up on the shore. We’d also make fires and stuff...that was most of our entertainment. We caught a cool scorpion trying to escape the fire so we saved him and kept him in the house.
PureVolume: Other than playing music do any of you have any creative side projects or hobbies?
[Collectively]: Alex has one!
Alex Garcia, guitar: I started killing bugs. I made a butterfly net out of a broom, coat hanger and a window shade. My neighbors must think I’m crazy, seeing me run around the yard with my long hair chasing bugs and putting them in mason jars to put in shadow boxes later.
Sanders: You’re going to get reincarnated as one of those bugs and have to suffer! [Laughs]
PureVolume: Where are you from and do you feel like you represent it?
Jeremy Lenzo, bass and vocals: Well, four of us are from Tallahassee and I guess we represent it. Jake is from Georgia and we’d all played in bands before. Some of us went to high school together or met just playing shows. There was a warehouse where a bunch of bands would place and practice and we started chatting with each other. Then we eventually decided to join two different bands we were in together to make a superband.
Alex: We’ve all been in a bunch of bands growing up and that’s how we all met, going to shows and playing in bands together.
PureVolume: When did you know music was for you? What incited it?
Garcia: I played a lot of sports growing up, and then getting into high school, after my ninth grade year, I quit completely just to work on music. At that point I realized that I’m probably not going to try and go to college and that I wanted to pursue music with a band. I had dated a girl from Tampa and she was friends with Fall Out Boy when they were touring in a small van. When I was at her place they came and stayed for the week and just through talking to them I realized, “Okay, so you don’t just play shows until somebody comes and sees you and you break big or something. You go out and do it on your own.” That’s when I figured it out.
PureVolume: What's your biggest non-musical influence?
Sanders: Actually my older brother was a lot of the reason I started doing this. He started a band when he was in eighth grade and I was in fifth grade and I just thought that was the coolest thing so I asked for a guitar for Christmas and started along that path.
PureVolume: Does he still do music?
Sanders: He doesn’t -- he’s actually a doctor now. A radiologist. [Laughs]
Garcia: Probably my dad, I feel like it should be someone famous or something like...
Sanders: Stephen King! [rolls up his sleeve to reveal his arm tattoo] My sleeve is based off King's The Dark Tower. See, there’s 19 roses.
PureVolume: What was the first big band you opened for? What was that experience like?
Sanders: It’s actually a really awesome story. We been in the band for very long and had mostly just played some local shows when Further Seems Forever was on their farewell tour. And further seems forever has always been one of my favorite bands. And we played the show and after we got off stage they asked us if we wanted to play the rest of the tour with them. So that was super awesome and they let me get on stage with them every night and play a song with them. It was a total dream come true and I still think that’s one of my fondest memories of being in the band.
PureVolume: What have you guys been listening to these days?
[Collectively]: Marianas Trench, the new Dangerous Summer, Foxy Shazam...and the new Blink-182 record is really good.
Get Mayday Parade's new album on iTunes >>