Pop-punk up-and-comers Paradise Fears
announced an upcoming tour with All Time Low
at the end of August...and promptly went back to work. They spent early September holed up in the studio recording an acoustic EP, and PureVolume used the occasion to grill vocalist Sam Miller on all things acoustical. Enjoy the interview and stay tuned for acoustic Paradise Fears action on PV.
PureVolume: Can you give fans a glimpse at what tracks you're giving the acoustic treatment?
Sam Miller, Paradise Fears: "Get to You" is one of our favorite songs, and we always thought it had a really amazing acoustic feel, so we're redoing that one. We've been doing acoustic house parties for the last month, and we found that "More Than Lust" had a very cool feel, so we put that one on there. We wanted to do a song off of our EP, Make Them Believe, and "Fall on Me" has some very cool piano. A couple more were picked by people who voted via text message. We also wanted to do a cover, so we picked our favorite song that's on the radio right now and remade a really chill, acoustic version of that.
PV: Ooh, suspense! So what do you dig about going acoustic versus playing plugged?
SM: It's a much more authentic and personal feel. It's a lot easier to connect to listeners in a live setting when you're just playing acoustic as opposed to having to hide behind the wall of sound that usually comes with being fully plugged in. Also, I love the sound of straight piano, and Michael, our keyboard player, is a pretty amazing pianist, and this acoustic EP will showcase that quite a bit more.
PV: What are some of your favorite acoustic versions of songs of unplugged albums?
A band favorite is All Time Low
's "Jasey Rae," which was produced by the same guy, Jordan Schmidt, who's producing our acoustic EP. A Rocket to the Moon
put out a record a little less than a year ago called The Rainy Day Sessions
that was very creative and authentic, and ended up sounding amazing, plus it really gave the songs new life, which I think is what an acoustic EP should do. Finally, The Spill Canvas
are amazing acoustic, so basically whatever they release that has as acoustic guitar in it is mind-blowing.
PV: Do you do any acoustic material during normal live gigs?
SM: We haven't for a long time, but occasionally we'll play straight acoustic. I've always wanted to, at the right show or on the right tour, play a straight acoustic version of one of the songs I feel much more passionately about, like "Sanctuary" or "Yours Truly."
PV: Is there a song you could never do acoustic?
SM: Of our songs, I think we could probably make any acoustic. But in terms of songs we didn't write, I'm not certain we could get a good final acoustic product out of "Electric Avenue," "Mambo Number 5," "The Macerena," or "The Undertaker's Thirst for Revenge."