Dashboard Confessional legend Chris Carraba joined us on the Rock Sound Podcast.
Dashboard Confessional's Chris Carrabba joined us on the Rock Sound Podcast to talk the band's first album in almost nine years, 'Crooked Shadows', the emo scene, working with artists he's influenced and more.
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YOU'RE SEEN AS A FIGUREHEAD OF THE EMO MOVEMENT, DID THAT LEGACY PLAY A PART IN YOU COMING BACK?
“I don’t think it was a reaction to knowing that people connected with my band, but I certainly felt good about knowing that the songs I’d already released continued to have life through people sharing them with their friends, or newer bands being influenced by what we’d done.
"I’m pretty removed from the trappings of stardom, so I think what I connect with is people. That could be someone who comes to my show because they connect with my music when they’re in their car, or it could be because there’s some young superstar that I influenced, and I don’t think one carries more weight than the other. I feel very fortunate that I had took some leaps of faith in my career and they’ve been received well. Not everything I tried was and certainly there was a backlash against our whole scene that I believe was probably somewhat deserved, but I think everybody did better by being brought down a peg."
WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY BEING BROUGHT DOWN A PEG?
“I think that the scene was born out of a purity; out of just some likeminded fans with a likeminded ethos and likeminded work ethics. Everybody had a similar approach to what they were willing to reveal in their songs, even if sonically they were taking different approaches.
"I don’t know if casual listeners can understand the relationship between say, Dashboard Confessional and New Found Glory, because sonically we’re pretty different bands, but we grew up just a few streets away from each other. We came up with the same ideals and ethos and we worked together, and we worked together. As time went by, newer bands rode in. It seemed like hair and makeup was as important as the idea behind the song, and that was somehting I didn't connect with. When done at its best you got something like My Chemical Romance blazing a trail and hanging their hat on a rung that was only occupied by a band like Queen. That it came out of our scene, of our circle of friends, was just incredible. The part that I don’t feel connected with was when certain bands started to use their songs as a platform to brag, about how much money they had or how wonderful they were. That’s when I checked out. When I say we got knocked down a peg, I think it’s maybe a better choice of words to say we got knocked off our perch a little bit. We weren’t played on the radio – we were kind of whipping boys who were made fun of."
YOU WORKED WITH CHRISSY COSTANZA ON 'JUST WHAT TO SAY' AND RECENTLY APPEARED ON ALBUMS BY THE LIKES OF NOTHING,NOWHERE. IN TERMS OF STAYING RELEVANT, IS IT CRUCIAL NOT TO BE BOUND BY GENRE CONSTRAINTS?
“I think it’s been important to me from the beginning. I think the genre I’m from is an outlier - we’ve always operated like everyone is welcome and everyone is invited. We often put bands that don’t make perfect sense on our bills for the same reason that we’ll invite Chrissy to sing with us. In my youth I might’ve thought of it as a crutch, or as something you do when somebody wasn't able to write on their own. Now I look at it as a much more difficult thing - it’s a difficult process and really rewarding when done right. When nothing, nowhere. asked me to collaborate, there was no question I was going to do it because I thought so highly of him. He’s probably my favourite artist of that kind since The Streets, so it was a big honour to be invited to do that.”
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