Very early days for album number three but Josh Franceschi tells Rock Sound there are some changes afoot in camp YMA6...
You Me At Six frontman Josh Franceschi has signalled the band's forthcoming third album will be a marked difference from their previous work.
You can read the full interview below, but when someone's dropping names like Coldplay and Parkway Drive in the same breath it's fair to say we're more than a little intrigued...
You've said you're aiming to get the new album out by September...
“Yeah, we just did some demos and played them to our label who we thought would be a bit worried because some of the songs are a bit heavier. I’ll be really honest, we were thinking about taking a little break from You Me At Six, we all listen to hardcore metal like, but don’t really listen to All Time Low. I like it, but it doesn’t really get me pumped or anything. Whereas whenever we’ve been on tour always listen to heavy music and it’s just what we like. We obviously love pop and rock and shit but like, metal is where a lot of our time lies.”
So a sideproject isn't being ruled out?
“Well, we were thinking about maybe doing a side project and just getting it out of our system and it not interfering with You Me At Six. But then we’ve just written some songs and they’re a bit rockier and a bit heavier. I thought the label was going to hate it and I thought they were going to freeze the whole plan of going into the studio March time. But you know, we gave them enough songs and they were like ‘This is amazing’ so it’s really cool. I think it’s definitely going to be a March / April recording time and it’s exciting.”
What are the songs sounding like so far?
“We’ve got songs that we’ve written that sound like they could be on a Coldplay or Snow Patrol album. And then we’ve got another song that sounds like it could be on a Parkway Drive record. It doesn’t really make much sense yet, but I think real musicians don’t produce the same old, same old stuff, they try to mix it up and try different avenues. I think what we’re doing is exciting, it’s kind of exhilarating because we’re not preventing ourselves from doing anything. I think some bands are like ‘Ahh no, we cant do that’ but we’ve never been like that. A few weeks ago I went down to the Never Say Die tour at The Forum, and no word of a lie I’ve never had so many people at a show come up to me and be like ‘yeah I love your band’. I’ve been to an All Time Low show and a Paramore show and had nobody approach me. But at this show it was like, ‘yeah, you me at six are sick man, I saw you play at Reading’ and all that sort of stuff and I’m like, ‘fucking hell that’s good news!’ If there are people coming to our shows who are into heavier music but we’re their guilty pleasure, like we are for the boys in The Ghost Inside then we’re winning the battle of both ends.”
Have you tried anything different lyrically?
“With lyrics I think, um, I’m just trying to maybe make it like, a bit simpler but in other ways a bit more complex…”
That's a bit vague...
“I played my mum some new stuff and she was like; ‘ah yeah that’s really cool’ on some songs, then she was like ‘I swear this is just, this is the same song Josh’ in the way that I’m writing about very similar stuff. And she was like, ‘try and pick out other stuff that is completely, you know, completely new to you and it’d be more of a challenge’. So I’ve gone through a process of trying to look at song ideas from a completely different perspective. In the sense of writing about stuff that hasn’t happened to me. Because up to this point I’ve always written from personal experience. The other day I was looking through the paper at life experiences I most definitely don’t have, and just trying to think ‘well, can I incorporate this into a song?’ so, I think the record will be a bit different.”
What was the reaction from Blink-182 fans like when you were announced as their support?
“I think a lot of our fans are obviously happy, and there are fans of Blink-182 that are like ‘Yeah, I don’t mind it’ and then there are other fans who say ‘They’re fucking shit! I hope they die before it all happens’. Yeah, so, er… mixed. Most of that is from people my age, people in their 20s, that have been into Blink since they were 12 or 11. And they seem to be struggling really to understand why, you know, a band from the UK is living out their dream and they’re pissed off with it. So it’s pretty funny.”
But it's a huge deal for you guys...
“Yeah! It has been a real confidence boost. It just goes to show for any band, whatever kind of music they play, if you keep really, really trying at something and you tour your arses off and you try hard then there’s no reason why you cant one day tour with your heroes. Which is basically what we’re doing. If it all ended after July 20th, I’d probably quit our band quite happily to be honest, because I’ve achieved everything I wanted to achieve.”
Last year you said you hated your band - what's changed?
“Yeah this time last year was probably the most negative we’ve been. And on the Paramore tour we had walkouts of dressing rooms just to fight each other. It was a pretty fucked situation in that I hated everyone in my band and none of us were really getting on. Everyone was arguing all the time just over little stuff. I think, ultimately people forget sometimes how young we have been whilst doing this - we’re 20 years of age now so we’ve gained a lot more perspective. But we were really young before. I set myself some New Years Eve resolutions you know last year because I always found that my main problem in the band was that I was too sharp sometimes. Especially with how I address situations and I used to be like ‘I think this is right, don’t really give a fuck what anyone else is going to say’. And obviously, if you’re like that in any situation people slowly but surely turn around and say ‘well fuck you, I don’t want to be your friend, I don’t want to work with you’. Our management have really noticed how I’ve changed and I think it has definitely contributed to our band being a better band. We’re probably now closer than we’ve ever been, purely because we’ve grown up. But we’ve had to grow up because of certain issues back home and stuff happening completely out of our control. You know, things that have pretty much torn us apart. So we’ve had to be there for each other and that’s what being in a band is about.”