Monday 11 February 2013

Kerrang Tour Special Part 2 // Interview with Tonight Alive

Welcome to part ll of our Kerrang Tour special. The 2013 tour features Fearless Vampire Killers, Tonight Alive, Chiodos, Black Veil Brides and a DJ set from William Control.

Est.1987 headed down to Manchester's Academy 1 to check out all the action. Yesterday we brought you an interview with Fearless Vampire Killers
Next up, Tonight Alive chat to us all about the latest album, taking risks and understanding British accents...

Tonight Alive front woman Jenna Mc Dougall on stage in Manchester

Last night was the first night of the Kerrang tour- how was it?
WHAKAIO [TAAHI, lead guitar]- We were a bit nervous because we’ve just been finishing writing the new record so hadn’t played shows in a couple of months so it was a bit weird to get out there and move around again.
JAKE [HARDY, rhythm guitar]- Yeah, it went really well considering we’ve never been to Cardiff before.

Guitarist Whakaio on stage
The tour features quite a mixed bill; is it nice being a part of it?
JAKE- Yeah, I think it’s good. It definitely brings out a mixed crowd. I mean most people are here to see Black Veil Brides, but there are kids coming to see hopefully us and everyone else.
WHAKAIO- It’s good, it mixes it up and keeps it from being boring.

Kerrang is one of the biggest music magazines in the UK and they’ve really backed Tonight Alive- was it nice to get invited on the tour?
WHAKAIO- Yeah, Kerrang has been awesome to us. They’ve given us so much support, so we’re so thankful for that and to come here and play like a thousand plus shows every night is pretty awesome. We’re really grateful to them and what they’ve done for us.

You guys have played over in the UK a few times; what do you like most about it?
WHAKAIO- I think the kids are just awesome. They’re really open about music and bands and we’ve  been received really warmly.
JAKE- Everything’s been moving really fast here for us so it’s really good. A lot of funny accents as well. Welsh is tough, Scottish is tougher and Irish is at the peak I think, they speak so quickly.

Jenna McDougall on stage in Manchester
You self funded EPs when you first started. Was it nice to finally make that full length, “What Are You So Scared Of?”, and go to LA to record it and I guess take your time?
WHAKAIO- Yeah, I think at the time we were a bit starry eyed and it was a massive learning curve for us. It was good that we didn’t have to work everyday to try and fund it. Well we’re doing that now, but it’s different [laughing].

And the name? Would you say you’re a band who is fearless, you take that risk?
JAKE- Yeah, definitely. We’ve always been a band to go against the grain and try and push ourselves as far as possible, whether it be going overseas or just working with new people.
WHAKAIO- I think that it’s always a risk going on stage everynight and being like “this is what we are, this is what we do”. But we always try and set goals for ourselves; we’re always trying to get better and hopefully it’s working.

What’s the biggest risk you’ve taken?
WHAKAIO- We’ve all quit our jobs and none of us went to college or Uni and have devoted ourselves to this. It is a massive risk, but I mean we’re still really young so if it goes wrong we can do something else [laughing].

Tonight Alive at Manchester Academy 1

You played Warped Tour for the first time in 2012 and you’re back for this year. It’s quite a hefty summer of touring; have you learnt anything from last year to bring to it this year?
JAKE- Yeah, definitely. Help out with as many people as you can because you can never have too many friends on the tour that can come back and help you out. Always make friends with your stage crew too, then they’re not going to screw with you [laughing].
WHAKAIO- It’s such a unique tour so to do it again you know what to expect. It’s so much fun and we’re really excited to go back. And miss Australian winter too, so good. 

Jake Hardy on stage on the Kerrang Tour
You’ve covered Mumford and Sons; are you enjoying the UK music scene at the moment?
WHAKAIO- Oh yeah, definitely. Young Guns is one of our favourite bands, we’ve toured with them, and musically they just get it. We love Mumford and Sons as well.
JAKE- We met a bunch of UK bands on Warped Tour, like Twin Atlantic, We Are The Ocean and we’ve toured with The Blackout and POLAR. There’s a bunch of UK bands that we really like and respect.
WHAKAIO- It’s almost like the UK and Australia are the same mix.
JAKE- Yeah, it’s like we have a long lost family over here; we come over here and feel accepted. 

And finally, what else do you guys have planned for this year?
WHAKAIO- We’re going back to finish recording our next album. Then we have a tour in the States and hopefully some stuff in Australia, and maybe Asia, and then hopefully coming back here two or three more times.
JAKE- Even though it’s twenty-four hours away, but it’s all good.

Thanks guys!

Photo credit: Danny Peart Photography

& there's still time to catch the Kerrang Tour 2013-