We Still Dream is one of the hardest working Pop Punk bands to come out of Jacksonville, FL, and I couldn't be more excited for their upcoming 3-song EP to reach as many ears as possible. Therapy is currently up for pre-order here and will be self-released on July 10th. A new song called Copouts And Cover Ups can also be found below, along with my interview with Dustin and Michael D of the band where we discuss the band's recent activity, including a mini track-by-track guide for the new songs.
For the record, could you state your names and roles in the band?
Dustin: My name's Dustin Monk and I handle the vocals, lyrics, and melodies.
Michael D: My name is Mike and I play guitar and fix the van when it dies.
We've been keeping tabs on the band since the release of the Chapters album last year and it seems like you've been constantly touring with other bands. In particular, what was it like flying over to the UK last November?
Dustin: Yes, we've tried our best to stay busy and have been fortunate enough to meet/tour with some amazing bands since the Chapters release. As far as the U.K. goes, we had a blast. I would say the shows were about 50-50 as far as crowd draw. But for me personally I didn't care if the shows did good or bad, because I was too preoccupied with the fact my band was in another country. I mean the things we got to see (Big Ben, Stonehenge, The Parliament Building, etc.) were honestly some the most memorable moments of my life.
The band's new EP, Therapy, is scheduled to be released in a few weeks from now - can you give us some background information on how the record came to be and what the songs stand for in general?
Dustin: I wanted this E.P. to lyrically be the most back to back personal content I've ever put together for this band. I drew from a song I had began writing around a year or so ago which consisted of me speaking on a lot of personal issues (such as depression and anger), which later came to be titled Copouts And Cover Ups. Over the years I've had family, several girlfriends, and friends all try to get me to speak to a therapist. This song was the beginning of me realizing maybe everything they had been saying had reason. As far as the other two songs... well they were both kind of a play off of the first one. Endless deals with my constant battle on what to believe in, why I'm here, where I'll end up, and the journey and struggle I've been through since the start of this band. And it speaks on how music has been the therapy to it all. The last song on the E.P. (Standstill) is once again kind of similar to the first two. It's one of those "give me a fucking break" kind of songs. In other words... depression at its finest.
The EP seems to carry a good deal of the previous album's sound - what were the writing and recording processes like in comparison, with DJ now on bass?
Dustin: Actually the E.P. had been written and recorded before D.J. entered the band, so the bass side of things weren't any different. The leads on the other hand took a big change when Mike White (former bass player) took the lead role following Charlie Cambell's (ex-lead guitarist) decision to leave the band a few years back. We began to stray away from the poppy side and started writing a more aggressive sound, still maintaining the catchy aspects, but this time with a lot more 90's influence.
I've noticed that the EP is being self-released and not through Euology Recordings - can you shed some light on the band's current situation label-wise?
Michael: When we signed with Eulogy it was a one-off deal and since we haven't put any new music up in over a year we decided it would be best to take some of our favorite newer songs and record them for an E.P. We decided to self release so we could be in control of everything from pre-orders to promotion and kinda take us back and get that perspective that we had when we first started the band.
Pre-orders for the EP recently went up, which also includes a DIY DVD. I think it's a great idea and not a medium that's often explored by smaller bands. How did the idea for the DVD start? Did you guys film the content yourselves?
Michael: I was racking my brain trying to think of something cool besides like a poster or some other kind of overdone thing that could go up with pre-orders. Out of the blue it occurred to me that we have god knows how much footage just laying around that we have never used. There are shows, van hangouts, skating, and all kinds of other stuff all shot by our ex-bassist Mitchell. We are all still good friends with Mitchell so I called him up and asked if he would be into helping us piece together a DVD. We have been working on it over the past few weeks and I think its coming together very good.
The band's DIY ethic has remained quite strong over the years - what are your thoughts on today's music scene and its interaction with means such as social networks and Kickstarter? Are you for or against them?
Michael: The music scene now days compared to the past is a lot different. Its a lot easier to get your music out there but since its so easy there are a lot of other bands trying to do the same thing and it becomes easier for smaller bands to get lost in the mix. This is why you have to constantly work hard and tour so people keep seeing your name pop up in news sites, Facebook, on shows, etc. I think social networks and Kickstarter are great tools for smaller bands. Unfortunately just like everything else people find ways to abuse this stuff and make it really annoying but that doesn't take away from how useful these things are.
What have you personally been into lately? Do you have any recommendations you'd like to make?
Michael: For the last two months I've been stuck on Brand New and Balance And Composure not sure why, but I just cant get enough. But in those past two months all kinds of bands have been releasing great new music; Carridale, I Call Fives, and Forever Came Calling just to name a few. I would recommend checking all these bands out.
What other plans does the band have in mind for the rest of the year? Could we see another music video?
Michael: Well the E.P. comes out July 10th and we are playing 3 shows in our home area with Turnover and Citizen. We will be on an east coast/midwest tour all of August, which will be announced soon. I would like to make it back to the U.K. and start recording another full length but all of this is still in planning stages. We are actually in the process of getting ideas together to make another video so keep an eye out for that in the next few months.
Thanks for doing this. Is there anything else you'd like to add?
We Still Dream: Not really, make sure you check our pages regularly for updates, new songs, and news. Come out to a show!
Interview by Mario Parra
Today we're happy to reveal that Anchor Eighty Four Records will be releasing We Still Dream's sophomore full-length, titled Something To Smile About, on August 13th on CD, LP, and digital formats, with pre-orders going live next Monday. The album will serve as the follow-up to last year's Therapy EP, which may've flown under some radars.
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