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Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Interview - The Fray..!

To end our amazing SnapCacklePop year, we had the chance last week to chat to Isaac from The Fray about their new single, their forthcoming album Helios, working with Stuart Price, listening to their music shirtless, becoming a dad, looking back on 2013 and soooo much more! It's the SnapCacklePop Interview with The Fray...

Hi Isaac, where are you calling us from in the world today?
I'm in an igloo off the coast of Greenland [Laughs] Actually, I'm in New York at the minute, we are doing a benefits show early tomorrow morning, with Rob Thomas from Matchbox 20. It's a really cool Children's Hospital benefit show, which we have done before, so I have an 8am start time. 

Well, welcome to SnapCacklePop
Thanks man

It was only last year when you released Scars & Stories and now you have a new record Helios due out in the new year. Thats's quite a quick turnaround isn't it?
We have always been committed to working at our own pace and our last record was released back in 2012 when we were in a really dark part of our lives, so decided to strike while the iron was hot and create this new record. We started writing in January and the songs just came together out of nowhere. We were in the studio by June recording and finished it by September. I'm really excited about what we have produced.

We are loving the lead single Love Don't Die, tell us the inspiration behind it...
Well actually I am neighbour with Ryan Tedder of One Republic and have spoken about writing together for such a long time, so I just gave him a call and asked "what are you doing today?" He lives 8 minutes away from me, so went over, got on the acoustic guitars and starting writing the new song. He had a really cool musical piece and we all started writing about our lives and the good place they are in right now, like my wife is pregnant...

Congratulations to you & Anna
Thanks man, we are really stoked. And the track reflects the feeling we have, of love. The lasting quality of it, in that no matter what happens in the world or our lives, you still have love.

An interesting lyric in the track is "It's not what you say, its what you do, And I say too much, yeah, that's true" - is this lyric inspired by Anna nagging you?
[Laughs] Yeah! Well actually it's inspired by Anna but not by her nagging. It's more the context of talk is cheap and I think I learnt that in our relationship. I would say 10 things and maybe do just one and that does not work in a relationship. She is 100% committed to everything she says, so it kind of kicked my ass into action.

There is an interesting video for the track too involving beers, babes and bar fights...
Yeah this is like our eleventh or twelfth video and we loved the idea the director Nathan Cox came up with for the video. I think Ben did the video just to ride the motorcycle at the end. [Laughs]

So you have your new record Helios out in February 2014, what can you tell us about it?
It's really honest. We worked with Stuart Price, who is a producer by day and DJ by night. He pushed us really hard to make music that makes you feel something and move you physically. You know the music where you want to jump up on the table, dance and rip your shirt off and throw it around.

So you encourage us to listen to this new album shirtless?
Pretty much and don't forget to dance on tables [Laughs]

And what are the inspirations behind the album?
Lyrically we are in a bright place. Most of us [in the band] are happy in life, in a settled place and especially coming out of the last album it was such a "storming" time and with this album, it feels like the storm clouds have parted and blue skies appear with the sun rises a bit. We named it Helios after the god of the sun in Greek mythology. A lot of the inspiration was this "lightness" and the calm after the storm and musically we've been listening to a lot of Daft Punk and Lorde, also stadium rock anthems from the 70's and 80's which is all kind of mashed together into this new album.

What are your other favourite tracks on the album we should listen out for?
There is a song called Hurricane that we have been playing live and it's energetic and awesome man. Also, there is Same As You, the last track on the album, which is very near and dear to my heart. The last song on all of our albums is always one of my favourites actually. 

Why is it so personal to you?
It's a song about sitting in a chair next to a widow, who just lost their husband of a long long time. It was inspired by two stories; one of my close friends who lost his father and I chatted to his mum about her loss and drawing on my own life, I've been married for 7 years and I can't imagine being with someone so long and then the next day they are gone. 

As a band you have been together for 10 years. How have you changed?
In someway the core element in each of us has stayed the same - our values and what we respect in ourselves and each other. Then in someways, we have changed radically and experienced so much together. We've worked hard, got money, lost money, had money stolen from the evil manager, got the money back, got a new manager who is awesome, record company changes, records come out and doing well, some not as much, and it all adds to the experiences we have had together as a band that has made us stronger.

Would you like to be starting out in the music industry today?
Jeez man. If you had asked me 10 years ago I would of said it was a terrible time to enter the industry, but looking back now it was a good time. Now I think it's a lot harder, as people have such short attention span, you have to keep reinventing yourself and following up the biggest single on the planet with another. It's tough but on the flip side there has never been more music, which is an exciting time as a listener.

So we shouldn't expect to see you swinging from a Wrecking Ball anytime soon then? 
[Laughs] Shit man, could you imagine me in the video!!

Well Helios was "imagined as a handsome god crowned with the shining aureole of the Sun, who drove the chariot of the sun across the sky each day" that could be your new video?
I like it! I could start with a robe and then lo se it throughout the video whilst driving my chariot. Have you ever directed a music video SnapCacklePop? [Laughs]

No, however we are sure we could for this kind of video! 
We are sending a plane to collect you now! [Laughs]

It's been a big year, but what is planned for 2014?
Well I have a baby on the way and our drummer is having their first baby as well. I think Joe and his fiance are going to get married in an undisclosed location and of course putting out the record in February, then a tour in America and at some point heading to Australia.

Yay! So here are your SnapCacklePop Big 5 questions...

Best part of 2013 has been?
Impregnating my wife [Laughs]

The worst part of 2013 has been?
Not knowing yet if it's a boy or a girl

Most embarrassing moment of the year?
Can't believe I am going to say this but I called to make a reservation the other day and I used a British accent, pretending to be calling for myself.

What's the biggest thing you have learnt this year?
Take care of yourself man, especially now I have a baby on the way, I need to be more responsible.

And new year resolutions for 2014?
Socialise my dog a little more as she's a little nuts around other dogs, so need to get her a little more social.

Isaac thanks from all at SnapCacklePop HQ and good luck with your new album and birth of your first baby.
Thanks guys and happy new year SCP.

Love Don't Die is available on iTunes now..!



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