Whilst supporting Deaf Havana on their current UK tour, The Maine decided to make the most of their time in the UK by playing some intimate headline shows in some cities that often fall out of the main touring circuit for most bands. We caught up with John, Kennedy and Jared to have a chat about their most recent trip to the UK, some incredible summer plans and what they’ll be getting up to once their sunburn is gone…
Indulge Sound: You’re over here supporting Deaf Havana on their current UK tour, how have the shows with Deaf Havana been so far?
John O’Callaghan: They’ve been really, really great. The guys in Deaf Havana are really awesome too. We actually got to meet them a couple years ago, we played a couple shows with them in Europe and we kinda hit it off then and we were very fortunate to get the call to be on this tour. We got added late, so there are a lot of people in the room that don’t even have a clue who we are.
Jared Monaco: Yeah the shows have been awesome so it’s been nice to play in front of the new crowds too.
JO: Yeah and that’s kinda the point of going on tour, especially on a support tour. You’re trying to gain more fans. We definitely think it’s going really well for us.
Kennedy Brock: It’s going in the right direction.
IS: It’s not been that long since The Maine last played in the UK, what is it about shows over here that keep you coming back?
JO: We did the Warped tour in November over here and we got to experience that and it was cool just to be a part of the whole Warped tour over here ‘cause we’ve done it in the States. But as far as like, club shows…
KB: We’ve just been lucky enough to have different outlets, because we had Warped tour and now this Deaf Havana tour, it’s a lot of different ways of reaching out to new people.
JM: It’s really the only way we know to grow our band – by being on the road. Playing shows and getting those support tours and taking advantage of it. We go outside try to meet kids every night and sell our record.
JO: It’s obviously hard being a band from the States ‘cause you’re not here all the time and so you can’t tour as frequently as you’d like. We try to come as much as possible, it’s just the money factor is really tough sometimes and that’s what sometimes keeps us away for months on end. We’re just trying to come back as much times as possible and really just try to continue to be in peoples ears. I think that’s the most important part.
IS: Why did you decide to include some more intimate headline shows alongside the support slot?
JO: Yeah, we also had a bunch of days off and a days off is time kind of wasted. Not wasted, but…
JM: It’s also money wasted – it’s nice to be able to fill in those slots, have a full tour and play places that we’ve never been.
JO: That’s the biggest part, we’re so far away – I think the closest place we’ve played is a couple of hours away and this is the farthest north we’ve been. It’s really cool to be able to play a venue that we’ve never been to in a city that we’ve never been to and know that there’s gonna be a hundred people in there which is really cool for us and it just gives us more motivation for the future to keep booking shows in places we’ve never been to.
IS: I’ve noticed that on your headline shows you have locals bands supporting you. Was this a conscious decision or just how things worked out?
JO: Absolutely, there’s gonna be kids that are coming for those opening bands because this is where they’re from. And it wouldn’t make sense to have a different band from some other city play in a venue that’s local to that scene.
JM: Especially since the shows are one offs for the tour that we’re actually on, it’s just nice to be able give those local artists a spot to play.
JO: We’re in the same scenario opening for Deaf Havana, hopefully there’s a lot of people in there vibing the opening acts and they get exposure too. It’s an opportunity for everybody, for sure.
IS: Last year seemed to be a busy year for The Maine. Forever Halloween was released last summer, what are your favourite songs from that record and why?
JM: I like Sad Songs, we’ve just started to play it live over here.
KB: Yeah it’s been a really fun song to play, we’ve only played it a handful of times.
JO: There are a number of tunes that we haven’t integrated into a set yet, which I’m looking forward to doing, probably after the summer time. Forever Halloween the title track on the album is one that I’m really looking forward to playing. There’s a few that we haven’t tested out on stage yet so it’ll be fun to re-visit a lot of them and kind of remember what we did and the nuances and stuff.
IS: Your self recorded Imaginary Numbers EP was also released at the end of last year. How was the experience of self-recording and releasing that?
JO: It was cool, I mean we were kind of imbued by the experience of working with Brendan Benson. He kind of inspired the whole rock mentality, just go in and record tunes and do it at the highest level that you can. We’re fortunate enough to live in a time where technology’s made pretty readily available for people, y’know it doesn’t cost a bajillion dollars to make something sound good anymore, which is cool.
KB: Yeah it was kind of an opportunity for us to explore our recording abilities after learning from the process of making Forever Halloween. There’s a lot of gear that we were turned on to from that, that we’ve been trying out and basically through trial and error of making some of these songs. It’s nice to be able to do it at home. We’re able to try out things and really just make the overall process better.
JO: And from a song writing stance it opens more doors for us as well. We like to think we’ve created a bevy of pretty versatile material that will allow us to open even more new doors in the future. We need to push ourselves, and that’s necessary for any band in our opinion, just to get better. If you’re gonna take this thing seriously and try to make it what you do it’s imperative that you push yourself.
IS: You guys don’t seem to stop working. After this show you continue on with the Deaf Havana tour, play Hit The Deck Festival, tour Brazil and then go on to play Warped. How do you cope with being so busy all the time?
JM: We get these nice little breaks in between everything, sometimes. When we’re home it’s nice to unwind a little bit ‘cause it’s not often that we are home for a large chunk of time so it’s become kind of special to be there. Now that we’re building a studio back home that gives us even more things to do when we are home – I guess more work!
KB: We’re kind of accustomed to being on the road so much.
JO: There’s not much to do back home other than think about what it is that we’re doing now. I mean [Jared] has a dog and a girlfriend – you want to spend your time with your loved ones. But at the same time this is really such an opportunity for us and it would be a little silly to rest on your progress and that be it.
JM: Totally, and while the opportunities are coming in we’re at a point where we’re saying yes to as much as we can in order to just to be out there and to reach people. We have an album out that we really want to spread and the only way we can do that is by not going away, just being persistent. That’s kind of the plan.
IS: What are you most looking forward to about the next few months?
JO: The shows are always great, even if there’s forty people in the room it’s a good time because you get to play music. We have five cuts that we did – two songs from Pioneer that didn’t make the cut, we did a bunch more guitars on those and vocals and we got those to a place where we were pumped about them. They were songs that we still enjoyed even some years later.
KB: Some unfinished ideas.
JM: We just polished them up in the studio that we have now.
JO: Then we had a couple of tunes that we didn’t put on Forever Halloween that we’re gonna put out in a bundle of a deluxe edition for Forever Halloween, so we’ll be putting that out before the summertime. That’ll be a fresh new take on Forever Halloween for us and hopefully for people who haven’t heard it still.
KB: We’re looking forward to that, we’re looking forward to traveling – a lot more warm weather is looking like it’s gonna be in our future. For a while I’m sure we’re gonna be excited about that-
JO: And then pissed off because it’s so hot.
KB: And looking forward to the cold again.
JO: Really, just staying busy and trying to be as positive about everything as we can, and trying to take in the experience of being on the road and just talk to people.
IS: Any bands you’re looking forward to sharing the stage with at Warped?
KB: Yeah, there’s quite a few that will be on our stage that I’m excited about. I’m looking forward to seeing Saves The Day – that’s a band we were into when we were getting into bands.
JM: That’s a big deal to me, they’re a very big deal to me. I love that band. Plus one of our buddies plays drums for them now which is crazy to me.
JO: We have a bunch of friends on the tour, too. You don’t think about watching them in the same light anymore, it’s like Bad Rabbits-
KB: Yeah Bad Rabbits, we’re very excited to see them, haven’t seen them in a long time.
JO: Nick Santino, our buddy is gonna be on the whole thing with us.
KB: It’s kind of just a fun tour for us to reminisce about with tons of bands that we’ve been on tour with and friends of ours…
JO: Every Time I Die is on it – we don’t know them personally but we’re pumped to see them play.
IS: Any plans beyond Warped, are you going to take a well deserved rest?
JO: Maybe for a small chunk.
KB: Enough time to let the sunburn go away and then back out.
JO: I’m sure in the fall we’ll be doing some more runs.
JM: I wanna come back over.
JO: It would be nice to do a proper headliner, but things are still a bit up in the air at the moment. There’ll be time for maybe one last big hurrah run around the world and then I would assume we’d take a jaunt into the studio sometime after that.
IS: Anything else you’d like to add, a message for the fans maybe?
KB: Thank you!
JO: Thanks for the continued support – and the support yet to be had.
JM: The future support!