All Time Low
After their electrifying performance at the 2016 MLB All-Star Concerts in San Diego, All Time Low took some time to reflect on their journey. They're now ready to share their new album with their devoted fans, as well as discuss their devoted fandom of the Baltimore Orioles. Make sure to tune in to MLB Network on Monday, June 5 to catch the band's appearance on MLB Central.
On Last Young Renegade, their seventh full-length album, All Time Low take the next step on a journey they began back in their hometown of Towson, Md. Nostalgia often lights the pathway to the future. By returning to the warm feelings of wide-eyed wonder from childhood, bottling them up tight, and distilling them with years of wisdom, evolution becomes seamless. Alight by analog synthesizers, cinematic soundscapes, and a lyrical journey lived through the eyes of a character known as the "Last Young Renegade," the chart-topping platinum-certified quartet - Alex Gaskarth [lead vocals, rhythm guitar], Jack Barakat [lead guitar, backing vocals], Zack Merrick [bass guitar, backing vocals], and Rian Dawson [drums] - looked back in order to move forward.
"There's a very nostalgic quality to this record," Alex affirms. "There are a lot of strings that tie each song together, which had to do with what we were going through at the time. All of these things were quietly affecting where my head was at creatively. The deaths of Prince, David Bowie, and George Michael and watching shows like 'Stranger Things' brought me back to being a little kid. There are touches of those inspirations creeping across. It's those emotions of sitting in front of the TV cross-legged at 6 years old watching 'Ghostbusters' for the first time. That was a guiding force for how we wrote and approached this."
"It wasn't about recreating anything directly, but trying to simply reflect those emotions," Jack agrees. Alex adds, "We asked ourselves, 'How do we not only get that feeling, but give it to people?'"
In order to transfer that sensation to audiences, they flipped the script. The band began secretly working on song ideas while touring behind 2015's Future Hearts. With no schedule or expectations looming, the boys experimented and pushed the envelope both thematically and musically.
"It really felt like we had the freedom to explore," Alex remarks. "We wrote outside the box. I think that creative liberty led us down the road of where this ended up. We went toward those sonic textures and synths. At the end of the day, our core is drums, bass, and two guitars, but I don't think that's the be-all end-all of what we are."
"It's a bit of a darker direction," Jack exclaims. "That's something we've never touched on lyrically and emotionally throughout a whole tracklisting. It's dark, but palatable. We're not 18 anymore. We've seen a lot. We've lost friends and family members. We've found our voice, and we approached this new territory from a perspective that makes sense for us."
"The Last Young Renegade became this character who could encapsulate all of these feelings throughout each song," Alex elaborates. "It was easier to approach personal experiences from an outside perspective as if I was talking about someone else or describing a movie I just watched. It enabled me to go places I wouldn't have been comfortable going otherwise. It let me sit down with my demons and talk to them without facing them directly. Anybody can be this character.
"The older you get, the more you realize everybody has a dark side and a past," the frontman goes on. "You come to terms with those scars. They're what make us who we are, define us, and give us character. We actively want to shake things up and place aspects of All Time Low into the light that keep everyone guessing."