Ahead of their excellent show at Manchester Academy 2 supporting Protest The Hero (see our review of the night here), we caught up with Mike, Aaron and Lukas of Intervals to talk about the new album, touring, burritos and much more. Check out what we asked below.
Could you introduce yourselves and tell me a bit about the band?
Mike: I’m Mike, I’m the vocalist.
Lukas: I’m Lucas, I play guitar.
Aaron: Aaron, I play guitar.
You’ve been on this tour since the start of the year – how’s it been going so far?
Aaron: It’s been awesome!
Mike: Yeah, it’s been great. Best way to start 2014, for sure.
Are there any interesting stories from the road?
Aaron: Stories that are appropriate for the viewers at home? I don’t really know…it’s funny because when you get put on the spot, you can’t actually think of anything. We were in Munich and we had a day off, and there was an Olympic snowboarding charity boxing match that we watched, which was the most random combination of things ever. There was that, and that was good.
Mike: And the beer was free!
Aaron: There are definitely other exciting things that aren’t coming to mind.
Mike: And we climbed the Eiffel Tower.
Aaron: Yes! The ultimate tourist move!
Well if you’re in Paris, it’s got to be done! So you’re going to be releasing your album A Voice Within next month – what was it like to arrange songs with vocals after starting out as an instrumental band?
Aaron: We haven’t really changed a whole lot. The band has the same identity, there was just some considerations about making room for Mike but at the same time it’s still sounds like Intervals – well, that’s coming from the guys doing the instruments’ standpoint. But for Mike, what do you think?
Mike: Well, I don’t know! This is the best band I’ve been in, ever!
Aaron: He wants you to know he’s been in a lot of bands!
Mike: The process was so much smoother than writing with any other band. I feel like all of us complemented each other and I don’t know, it just flowed really well, the writing process.
Lukas: We didn’t change much either, like Aaron said, because we still use contemporary song structures like the old stuff, and we also didn’t take away any of Aarons leads – we just made them go hand-in-hand with each other.
Aaron: Yeah, that was the goal. The band already had a melodic identity as well, so we just basically got the vocals to fit in with that. Melody is melody, lyrics are just the next step.
Were there any songs that were more of a challenge?
Aaron: I don’t know! From an instrument standpoint, I’d say they were all relatively on-par. Obviously there were some sticky moments with some challenging moments and whatever.
Mike: Yeah, there are definitely certain parts of the album that I think pushed me as a vocalist and were difficult, but I think that’s what makes you better.
Which song are you most proud of?
Aaron: Wow, I’m going to have a hard time picking that. I’m probably going to say…well, no one’s heard the record yet!
I’ve heard it! I’ve reviewed it and I thought it was awesome!
Mike: You’ve heard it?
(whole band cheers)
Aaron: What’s your favourite song?
To be honest, none of them really stand out as a favourite to me because I love them all.
Aaron: Aww, cool!
That’s not saying none of them grab me, but they’re all just so good I can’t choose just one.
Lukas: Cool, cool!
Aaron: I’d say my favourite is the title track, the last track on the album because it seems to be a combination of most of the vibes that occur throughout the record. But track two, Moment Marauder, is a band favourite, I think. We pushed the envelope a bit in terms of exploring some musical moments that aren’t that atypical for us, so yeah!
Lukas: I think Self Surrendered.
Aaron: Self Surrendered is cool. It’s really epic and cinematic, really long and stuff, it was a little different for us.
Mike: Moment Marauder for me, mainly because that was pretty much my audition! So it’s definitely a special one, I think.
If there was going to be a movie made about Intervals, which actors would you want to play yourselves?
Lukas: Oh, this is good!
Mike: Yes! The tough question is who’s gonna play my girlfriend, Lana Del Ray? She could play herself though, I suppose.
Lukas: I think it’s easier to choose for ourselves, so we should assign them!
Mike: Johnny Depp, for Lukas!
Aaron: Who’s the guy from Slumdog Millionaire…?
(whole band laughs)
Mike: Yes, yes!
Aaron: Oh, and what’s his name, from Harold & Kumer?
Mike: Yes, that guy.
Aaron: We’re really bad at this!
Mike: We need one for Aaron. Who should we say?
Lukas: Anybody but Tom Cruise.
Mike: I dunno, that’s a really difficult one. Maybe we’ll come back to that one at the end! It’s gonna be a wack-ass movie, let me tell you!
If Intervals could put their name to any product, what would it be?
Aaron: A product…what’s something that we all use a lot? Beer?
Mike: Baby wipes!
Lukas: Let’s just open a sushi restaurant…
Aaron: A band product though, that couldn’t be done!
Aaron: Yup! Intervals burritos!
Mike: They would be amazing.
And my last question – do you love or hate Marmite?
Lukas: We had a crazy argument with Mos, from TesseracT about it but I don’t think we know what it is!
Mike: What is Marmite…?
Aaron: I don’t think we know enough to actually…
It’s that black stuff you put on sandwiches sometimes?
Aaron: Oh! Yeah yeah, no, we don’t like that. But I dunno…I think I’m gonna say we don’t know enough about it to make the call.
Mike: Can you explain it to us?
It’s sort of like this black stuff…
Aaron: What’s it even made from? Like, black olives or something?
I have no idea. Probably the stuff you scrape off the bottom of a pan.
Mike: What? No, we definitely don’t like that!!
Aaron: But there’s probably a lot more weird things we’d eat than that…
(there is a long pause where none of the band says anything)
Lukas: Fried haggis.
Mike: I’m interested.
Aaron: There you go.
Lukas: Someone was eating it last night at the bus…
Aaron: It smelt great. And it looked great.
A Voice Within is out next month. Make sure you check out our review of it here.