Rock Sound chats to Brand New drummer Brian Lane ahead of the band’s massive UK show at Wembley Arena.
With Brand New’s massive show at London’s Wembley Arena looming large Rock Sound caught up with drummer Brian Lane to talk about the show and the band’s future, read the full transcript of the conversation below…
Did you book Wembley as an experiment? “Definitely. We’d never done anything that big until the last show of our last US tour, it’s definitely not something we ever expected to be able to play so we hope it works out. I haven’t seen ticket counts so I don’t know how many people will be in there with us at the weekend.”
If it works will it become the way you tour in future? “I don’t think it will, it feels like a special thing and not necessarily something we would do all the time. We enjoy the smaller shows too, we are talking about doing a small venues van tour round America and then doing something similar in the UK in summer.”
How will the set be different at Wembley Arena? Have you bought a tonne of pyro or will you just be onstage with your amps and a black curtain behind you? “There will be no pyro, although I kind of wanted some! We’re trying to emulate what we did at our large US show where we had more production, video screens and a backdrop, so it will definitely be a bigger production than last time we were in the UK. As far as song choice, we never really decide until five minutes before we go on or while we’re onstage and even though we’re playing Wembley that’s probably going to be no different. Our production team doesn’t like us because of it and they always freak out when we change stuff onstage, but that’s when it’s fun right?”
You’ve got a lot of friends playing with you at the show, any collaborations planned or possible? “Maybe, we’re friends with Thrice and we grew up with Glassjaw so it might happen. I’m sure something will go on as we’ll all be onstage enjoying each other’s music, but there’s nothing really planned yet.”
Intriguing. Do you think it’s funny that you and your childhood friends in Glassjaw have sold thousands of tickets to a show in London? “Yeah, it’s absolutely ridiculous, it’s a great thing. We talk about it all the time and it’s still unbelievable that it’s actually happening.”
Five minutes before you go onstage on Saturday night will you be nervous? “I think we all might be a bit nervous because we’ve had a month off before this show. The size of the venue doesn’t make me nervous but being on tour and not being totally on top of my game makes me nervous.”
So more UK shows this summer all being well? “That’s the hope, obviously it all depends on business relations and if we get on a roll with recording more stuff, but we’re talking about coming back to Europe in May or June and we’ll see where it goes from there. Nothing is set in stone though, it’s just talk at the moment. I think we owe England to come back at least once more on this record.”
What does the future hold for Brand New? “We’re working it out, there is a lot of talk about it at the moment about what we do in future with regards to putting out records and whether we stay on our label and we’re in limbo right now trying to work it all out. We’re talking about recording another album but we don’t know whether it’s going to come out on a label or whether we just release songs in batches. Everything is up in the air at the moment but we’re not just going to be slacking and hanging out, we will start working pretty soon.”
How do you see it panning out? “We really have no idea. I don’t know if there’s a point to releasing records if they’re not physical releases, if we're going to release a lot of things digitally then I don’t see why we couldn’t release a song a week or a song a month or just put out what we like from whenever we record. I think that might work out but we’ll see what happens.”
Does the not knowing that surrounds this band scare or excite you? “Usually I would say it’s frightening but it’s kinda of the way we’ve always worked. We do what we want to do when we want to do it and for some reason there’s always been someone there on our side. It’s definitely daunting to not know what’s coming next, but in some way we know it needs to happen so that this band keeps going in the way we want it to.”
Too much machinery could ruin the magic? “Yeah, I think that’s where we’re at right now, I think it’ll be good to take things in stride and be on our own and see what happens. Sooner or later we’ll just get back in a room together and it’ll seem like nothing was ever wrong in the first place.”
The subtext of this conversation is that there is a desire to regain a control, perhaps a release from certain business relationships you have so that you can move forward? “I think so. I think you’re trying to pull it out of me right? [laughs] It’s something that is very important to us and that’s probably all I’m going to say on it.”
Finally, do you acknowledge the support of UK fans who have made this show on Saturday possible? “It’s amazing, we’ve always said that our music connects with fans in England more than anywhere else in the world and we’ve always had amazing shows there, so it’s something that we greatly appreciate and something that we hope will always be there for us even if we take off for a little while. Even when we have taken off we come back to a crazy response from you guys so it’s something we love and won’t ever complain about.”
Brand New play Wembley Arena with Glassjaw and Thrice on Saturday January 23. Check back to the Rock Sound website for the verdict on the show!