Midnight Playlist is a four-piece rock band from London that are currently getting ready to release their new EP Built To Break. We caught up with singer/guitarist Aaron to find out a bit more about the band.
How did you get started?
We all met through school and decided we wanted to be in a band pretty quickly. For a long time it was a bit of a joke and we didn’t see it going anywhere, but the more we put into it, the more we could hear something special in what we were doing. We started writing our own music and have been growing and gigging ever since.
You’re currently getting ready to release your new EP Built To Break, can you tell me about the writing and recording process?
Writing Built To Break was a really long, tough process. We questioned ourselves loads as a band, trying to work out exactly who we wanted to be as musicians and how we could achieve that. We were actually planning to go into the studio in 2013 but our plans fell through, which was a blessing in disguise really, since it gave us time to hone our sound. We recorded with Keir French at Dethrone Studios for a week in the summer, and the actual recording itself was pretty easy. Keir’s such a great guy to work with and he brought so much to the table, and we knew the songs so well that getting them down was no trouble at all.
Were there any tracks that were more of a challenge to get down?
In terms of the writing, I’d have to say the hardest one was track 2, Desperate. I wrote the music for the song a long time before the lyrics, and we practiced it for weeks with no vocals. It’s the only song on the EP about one specific person, and I knew what I had to say but I really wanted to put it perfectly. More so than on any other track, I challenged myself to be open and genuine, and I think the emotional weight of that song is probably the heaviest because of it. I came in one practice with the vocals all written and it just all clicked together.
Which track are you most proud of?
That’s hard, it’s like picking a favourite kid, almost seems unfair. I think I’d have to say Undone, the first single we put out. That song really marked a turning point for us in terms of writing. It was just different to anything we’d ever written – a little bigger, a little tighter. I think it was the first time I noticed us sounding like the band we wanted to be. It definitely had an influence on all the tracks we wrote after it.
Any interesting tales from the studio?
On our first day of recording for this EP, our producer’s cat wandered through the door while we were working on guide tracks and decided that would be a fantastic moment to vomit on the carpet. It left a fairly grotesque stain, which we’re told will serve as a reminder of our band permanently.
What has been your best experience in the business?
We’ve not been in the ‘business’ too long really, so our experience doesn’t consist of much. Though I think, at least initially, it’s been cool for us to be able to finally share our music with a lot of people and get some good feedback. It’s nice to know that all the time we spent slaving away in a spare room writing this EP and in the studio actually making it wasn’t a complete waste.
And what’s the hardest thing about being in the business?
Finding the right balance between dealing with personal commitments and our musical aspirations. At this stage in our lives we can’t dedicate ourselves completely to the band, which we’d love to be able to do, but there’s always stuff to take care of first. Hopefully a little further down the road, things will change for us.
What inspires you?
When it comes to writing our music, I’m really just inspired by my own experience of the world around me. The people and places I know and the things I’ve been through are obviously topics I normally fixate on, and I’m always managing to pull lyrics and melodies out of particularly emotive moments. In more general terms, I’m really just inspired by people. People’s stories and situations, the collective human experience. I’d definitely want to touch on that lyrically more in the future instead of continuously writing about how upset I am.
Who are your role models and idols?
Pretty typically, we just look up to bands we like. Decade, A Day To Remember, The Wonder Years, Fall Out Boy, Bring Me The Horizon – any band that’s really killing it and living the life we aspire to at the moment. Simple really.
Built To Break is out on December 1 – preorder it from here.