The Following is Against the Current’s Interview with Alternative Press Magazine. This interview is copyrighted to Alternative Press Magazine and we hold no rights to its content. We are displaying it here for fans who don’t have access to get this magazine and to archive ATC Interviews. Please support Against the Current and ATP! by picking up your copy of this magazine online or at local retailers.
Against the Current is featured in the October issue of Rocksound Magazine which is on sale now.
The October issue of Rocksound is a poster edition featuring posters from several bands including Against The Current. These posters are themed “Kings and Queens of 2015”. The October issue of Rocksound also featured a brief interview with Against the Currents on touring the UK and their upcoming debut album.
ATC’s Brief interview with Rocksound can be found below. Besure to pick up your copy of the October issue of Rocksound magazine now for a Against the Current Poster as seen in this posts featured image and the interview seen below!
Check out this exclusive interview with Against the Current by Fuse.tv.
Fuse recently sat down with Against the Current for a great interview titled “Meet Against the Current: From YouTube to Your Next Obsession“
The Poughkeepsie pop rock band discuss their move from Internet fame to real-life success
Unfamiliar with Against the Current? That’s about to change. The pop-rock trio have been making music together for a few years now, quickly finding Internet fame through YouTube (the video for their latest single, “Paralyzed,” has over seven million views…and was posted less than two weeks ago) with both covers and original material—but don’t call them YouTube celebs. Fast forward to the present and the band are gearing up for a debut full-length out on pop-punk staple label Fueled By Ramen (Paramore, Fall Out Boy, Panic! At the Disco) due out in early 2016, with promise of a pre-order at the end of the year, an overseas tour in August followed by U.S. dates in the fall.
We sat down with vocalist Chrissy Costanza, drummer Will Ferri and guitarist Dan Gow at New York City’s Webster Hall to talk Internet, idenity and their hometown of Poughkeepsie, NY.
How did you guys meet and start writing?
Will: Dan and I met in, like, third grade and we’ve been in bands ever since. We’re best friends, singers have been in and out of the band, members always changing. Eventually we met Chrissy through a friend of ours and it stuck. We’ve been writing original music ever since. We met her [and] thought, ‘This is cool, this works.’
Chrissy: They had multiple different bands with multiple different members. It was always the two of them but different names, different lineups, different sounds. When I joined the name changed to Against the Current.
“We’re the black sheep. We’re the black sheep of YouTube.”
What does the name mean? If you google it you get a lot of, like, eco-friendly stuff?
Will: We’re trying to save the environment.
Dan: It’s actually from the last line of The Great Gatsby.
Chrissy: The line is “So we beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past.” We’ve interpreted it as the meaning of us [when we] went against the current, against the grain and did what felt natural to us…regardless of what we thought we were supposed to be doing. We threw all of that out the window. We existed how we wanted to.
Will: Our music says a lot about it, too, like the fact that we broke out of our hometown scene quickly. I feel like people are stuck in a cycle of “Oh, there’s this new band, I’m going to try and be like them. We’re going to play a bunch of local shows.” We wanted bigger things than that.
Dan: We went for a global market with the Internet, YouTube and all that.
Chrissy: We did something that bands are kind of afraid of, or at least used to be, [which] is the YouTube scene. They don’t want the YouTube stigma. We were like, “It’s a great platform. People all over the world know our music.” We’re about to tour in Asia and the U.K. and Europe as headliners. We’ve never been on a support tour over there. We get to go to all those countries. It’s not something to be afraid of. We wanted to get our music out there.
What is the YouTube stigma?
Will: Being a cover artist. The idea that “Oh you’re friends with all these other YouTube artists. You must hang out all the time.”
Dan: We don’t know a single one of them.
Will: They have their own little world. It’s not for us.
Chrissy: They have this community that’s glued together [and the stigma is] that they’re only doing covers and they’re a certain type of people. I don’t know. We don’t really have a lot of friends on YouTube.
Will: We’re like the black sheep. We’re the black sheep of YouTube. It’s like “Whoa, they have all these subscribers, but thirty videos. Who are these people?”
“We don’t really want to fit in to one section. If we’re able to be grouped into one category then we’ve become something that already exists.”
It almost sounds like the Internet answer to hardcore communities—the whole, “we have to stick together” mentality. What’s the scene in Poughkeepsie like?
Dan: There was a lot of pop-rock when we were growing up, like, Matchbook Romance is from there. We Are The In Crowd. Now us.
Will: It used to be a lot better than it is. Now it’s pretty rough. It’s basically pop-punk and hardcore. That’s all it is.They just play pizza shops. No one plays at the venues anymore. The whole pop-punk revival thing is just weird.
You recently signed to Fueled By Ramen, congrats! How did that come about?
Will: They approached us! We just started talking to them. It was the most authentic, natural thing ever. They were super interested in the band and what we were doing. We met with them before a few times. We had a few other labels in mind but they just felt right the instant we met them. It’s a small team, they’re really passionate.
Chrissy: They’re passionate about what we are now. We’ve heard before: “You guys could be this, you should do that, you will be this.” Fueled by Ramen was like “We love what you are now. We want to just make that bigger and bigger and bigger.”
You describe yourself as “pop rock” but resonate with the Alternative Press, pop-punk world.
Will: Alternative, pop rock, indie all these kind of things. It’s universal.
Chrissy: We’ve always had a hard time giving ourselves a genre because even on our EP, if you listen to the Gravity EP there are really slow, ballad-y songs, there are the pop songs. “Gravity” is way more pop, but then “Fireproof” is way more rock. “Talk” is way more pop-punk. Even the songs we’ve written recently, we’ve written some indie-pop songs. It’s so hard for us to categorize ourselves as one thing.
In that pop-punk world, though, where do you see your place?
Dan: We’d rather be on the radio than [performing like] all our friends at their hometown pizza shop show.
Chrissy: I think that ties into our name and the meaning behind our name, going Against the Current. We don’t really want to fit in to one section. If we’re able to be grouped into one category then we’ve become something that already exists, probably. We want all of those kids that would come out to that pizza shop to come to our show and all of those kids who know us from the radio to come to that show. We have kids that come to our show that have been coming to concerts for years, and ones that it’s their first concert and they just wanted to see it. I think that’s the best way to do it.
And you get to prove a few cynics wrong, make a few people angry.
Chrissy: Definitely gotta piss a few people off.
“Originally our manager said it might be a few months before we could announce it and I said, “you’re kidding right?!” because I can’t keep a secret!” vocalist Chrissy Costanza says with a laugh and a huge grin. Last week, the New York pop/rock trio, Against The Current, announced they had signed with Fueled By Ramen Records and the band couldn’t be happier.
“It was actually a quick process,” drummer Will Ferri says when discussing how long the announcement had been in the works. “Most bands usually have to wait a while for this kind of stuff but they literally wanted to announce the day of when we signed but we waited a week.”
Even before signing to the label with a rich history of skyrocketing bands careers (Paramore, fun., Panic! At The Disco), Against The Current already had established a huge online fan base, which they had built from the ground up. Despite this success, the band still felt like it was an no-brainer to join the Fueled By Ramen family.
“You can do a lot on your own but record labels control the radio,” explains guitarist Dan Gow. “You need their backing. You need their promotion. They will help out a lot. With us, we’ve always had to rush to put out previous releases because we were selffunding everything and had to write and record it in a week but now being on a label, we can have a few months to sit down and have a write. That’s something we really wanted.”
Also a big plus for the band’s decision to sign on with Fueled By Ramen was now they can handle the business side of things on their behalf and not having to result in “child labor” (as Dan jokingly says) of having his sister pack up thousands of merch orders.
“It definitely helps smooth out a lot of processes,” Chrissy says. “When we just released our new GravityEP, that’s thousands of order and that’s one girl packaging everything after school instead of hanging out with her friends because we’re not even home.”
When you search Against The Current online, the first thing you are directed to is a slew of covers that were released by the band over the past few years, which have attracted over 2-3 million views per video. Despite this online success, part of the reason they signed with the label was to be recognized as an actual band, rather than a YouTube project.
“We always get stuck in that stigma where people think we’re YouTubers. We used it an outlet,” Will continues. “We actually don’t do that many covers to begin with! We do three a year, maybe.”
“We kind of stumbled upon it by mistake. We are not a cover band. We don’t want to be a cover band. We want to be recognized as a rock band,” explains Dan. “We only really do them with artists that we are going out on tour with like this one, we did “Uptown Funk” with Set It Off. It definitely helps ticket sales and introduces everyone to everyone on the tour.”
But the question on everyone’s mind is when can we can all expect the band’s Fueled By Ramen debut? At this moment in time, the label are predicting an “early 2016” album release.
“Right after this tour, we will start working on the album, but it’s a long process,” says Chrissy. “The rest of the year will be pushing the Gravity EP and still doing self-funded and self-booked tours with our agent. After that, when the album comes out, that’ll be the Fueled By Ramen era. Even before we start the process, we plan on hitting the US again but also international countries like Australia, Asia, Europe/UK and hopefully South America, because we haven’t been there yet.”
After grilling the band for nearly ten minutes with questions purely about signing with Fueled By Ramen, we move on to more important topics. How they spend their downtown when (rarely) at home, and everything behind the music. When asked the question, they are all immediately quick to reply but insist on describing each others day-to-day lives when off the road.
“Dan wakes up about two o’clock,” explains Will when describing a typical day in the life of Dan. “Most of the time is spent on his computer, which is about a foot away from his bed. Playing PC games. I think that’s basically his day until six in morning.”
“He does this on tour too! He goes to bed about two and goes to falls asleep at like six. Staying up watching TV shows on his laptop,” adds Chrissy. “Oh! And getting sushi about three times a week.”
According to Dan, Will’s day starts at 10 or 11am, kicks off with a three hour shower and then proceeds with him working on Logic songs on the computer in his basement. But Chrissy, who lives far away from her bandmates, describes that her typical day consists of video games or time with her family.
“Sometimes I will wake up really early or sleep really late,” says Chrissy. “Sometimes I’ll go shopping with my mom or go and see my grandparents. Usually when I’m at home, I’ll spend a lot of time with my family. I play with my dog a lot and spend all afternoon until 4am playing League of Legends pretty much.”
Dan immediately states on record that he hates League of Legends. Sorry, guys.
Like the rest of us, the band like to spend hours on end either at home or in their bunks binge watching shows on Netflix. Dan tells us that he just finished watching every episode of The Blacklist last week and Will is enjoying his time watching new shows including Fresh Off The Boat and The Goldbergs. Chrissy on the other hand has been watching nothing but American Horror Story.
“I’ve been watching it because everybody says it’s really awesome but I don’t know if I’d say that it’s really awesome,” explains Chrissy. “I like it but I feel like all the ideas are much stronger than the actual screenwriting of it.”
Besides fronting their already successful band, Chrissy also shares the same last name of one of the greatest sitcom characters of all time. George Costanza of Seinfeld. But to my surprise, it’s the parents of the fans that she gets the most Seinfeld references thrown at her from.
“I think our audience for the most part is a little young for that but I personally watch Seinfeld and I love TV shows like that. I definitely get tweets all the time like, “are you related to George?””
The band are still out on the Glamour Kills Spring Tour (which concludes early April), but plan to take a few weeks off before they get back to writing their debut album.
“Maybe Will and I might take a writing trip to Nashville and have a good time?” laughs Dan. “But…probably not though!”
Against The Current fans should not despair as they don’t plan on slowing down anytime soon as they plan to be back on the road later this year.
“We haven’t announced any tour dates yet but we don’t plan on getting back on the road until late August,” Chrissy assures us when discussing upcoming plans. “We’ll have all the time before that to work on the record.”
– Jon Ableson
Against The Current’s new self-released Gravity EP is available now via the band’s official webstore.
On Monday, March 30th, the Pop/Rock group Against The Current rocked Laird Hall and left a lasting impression on those who attended. The group from Poughkeepsie, New York has three members: Chrissy Constanza, lead vocals, Daniel Gow, vocals and guitar, and Will Ferri, drums.
Prior to the show, I sat down to interview the band, asking them anything from relating to their music career to silly questions that could possibly have them reveal something their fans had never heard before.
What was the process like getting signed to [the record label] Fueled by Ramen? Did they approach you or did you need to approach them?
“Yeah, a few labels approached us, and we tried to go around and find the best home and ended up with them,” Dan says.
“We went through a couple meetings and just kept narrowing it down and narrowing it down,” Chrissy adds.
What is something that no one knows about you; as a band or individually?
“Dan’s addicted to gum, 5 Gum,” Will says, and Chrissy was quick to agree.
“Yeah, that’s true. But he’ll never finish a pack of gum. He always leaves like two or three pieces,” she says, and when Dan tries to interrupt, she continues, “You leave two or three pieces in a pack and it’s garbage and leave it on the floor but no one throws it out because they think it’s still a good pack of gum.”
“I guess that’s mine,” Dan hesitantly agrees.
Meanwhile, Will admits that he’s a clean freak while Chrissy admitted to wearing the same pair of socks multiple days in a row.
Favorite part of the music career: recording, filming music videos or performing live?
Dan: “Probably recording, performing live, and then music videos.”
Chrissy: “It depends. It really depends on the day for me.”
Will: “Yeah, probably playing live, recording, and then music videos.”
What would you be doing if not in the band? Any other interests in careers?
“Special effects make-up,” Chrissy says.
“It’d probably be something with computers for me,” Dan states.
“It’d probably still be in the realm of music somehow,” Will admits.
Who in the band is the messiest?
Chrissy is quick to point to Dan. “Christina,” Dan says to her, and everyone laughs.
“Let’s move on, next question,” Will pushes jokingly, “You should get to the next question before we start a fight here.”
Who is the biggest troublemaker?
Chrissy again points at Dan, and this time Will just says, “Next question please,” in the same joking manner.
“He didn’t even try to deny that one,” Chrissy adds.
“No, you complain too though,” Chrissy says.
“We should move on to the next one,” Will laughs.
“I’m a big complainer, but you complain a lot too,” Chrissy adds, speaking to Dan.
Describe the person on your left in one word/sentence.
Will (to Dan): Interesting.
Dan (to Chrissy, where she quickly says “Don’t do a mean one!”): Annoying.
Chrissy wears a shocked expression while Will laughs.
But then Dan changes it, “Loud.”
“Thanks,” Chrissy says sarcastically. “For Will: introverted.”
Head on over to Alter the Press to check out an exclusive interview with ATC on signing with Fueled By Ramon and life hat home!
With the release of their brand new EP ‘Gravity’, we thought we’d ask Chrissy Costanza some questions. Enjoy, leave us your comments about ‘Gravity’ in the comments below. Interview by Jamie Simms & Nick Webb
MO: Thanks for taking the time out to talk to us Chrissy!
Chrissy: Hey, thank you for posting about us!
MO: For those that don’t know, tell us a bit about how the band formed and what you were up to in the early years?
Chrissy: Dan and Will met in 3rd grade, when they were 10 years old and started a band. They had always had different singers and other members over the years. A few years ago, a mutual friend introduced us and we just kind of clicked.
MO: What is your favourite memory since forming Against The Current?
Chrissy: Our show in the Philippines, it was absolutely surreal.
MO: Can you tell us what the inspiration was for you to get involved with music?
Chrissy: We grew up with music surrounding us all the time, it wasn’t something we picked up one day, we had loved it from the beginning.
MO: If you could tour with any band/artist dead or alive who would it be and why?
Chrissy: Personally I’d love to tour with Bon Jovi, mostly just because I love Bon Jovi haha. Will would probably say Andrew McMahon and Dan would say anything from the hair metal era like Def Leppard (which I’d totally be down for as well)
MO: Before we talk about music & ‘Gravity’, let’s talk touring a little bit. Recently, you were in the UK, can you tell us about your time here?
Chrissy: It was cold! But incredible. The fans were so passionate and stoked to be there, it was a great time.
MO: Something all your UK fans are wanting to know, is there any plans to come back anytime soon?
Chrissy: Of course! We just released our Gravity EP so we HAVE to go play it overseas with some of our most awesome fans!
MO: We have to ask, How does touring in the UK compare to touring in the US, What are the Audiences reactions?
Chrissy: UK fans are definitely extremely passionate, we had a lot more people that cried over us in the UK which was pretty awesome haha!
MO: is there any place in the world in particular that you’d really love to play?
Chrissy: We’ve played a lot of places already, but personally I’d love to play Italy mostly just because that’s where my family is from and I want to go there terribly.
MO: Talking about tours and what not, If there was one festival you’d love to play what would it be and are you playing any this year?
Chrissy: Right now we’d love to play Summer Sonic and Reading and Leeds! We’re playing South By So What as well as a few other festivals in the US, but no international festivals are planned at the moment.
MO: Funniest story from a tour, GO!
Chrissy: One night everyone poured chocolate milk all over Dan in the shower during The Outsiders Tour, then we did it again during the UK tour. We call Dan chocolate man now haha!
MO: Now we’ve chatted about Against The Current and Touring, Let’s Chat Music. I think the first thing we have to ask is How does latest EP differs to your first EP in terms of recording and production?
Chrissy: We did this EP with a different producer and had some other writers that worked with us on some of the songs. It was an incredible experience and we really developed our skills as songwriters a lot more. Instead of going in with the songs already written, we were writing and recording the songs the same day. It was crazy.
MO: So How does a Against The Current song take form?
Chrissy: Usually it starts out with a simple guitar part or melody, or a catch line, and then the rest of the song is developed around that.
MO: We think ‘Gravity’ is incredible, what is your favourite/most meaningful song that you have written?
Chrissy: For me personally, it would be Paralyzed. It’s about how crippling anxiety can be and the feeling of being locked in your own head. It was a hard thing to express the right way and to share with other people.
MO: We heard from you guys at a UK show that there are 2 EPs due to drop this year, any clues to the next one?
Chrissy: We’re not entirely sure if the next EP is really going to be an EP or not, those songs might end up part of the record.
MO: With the past EP’s that you’ve released, one thing we have to ask is.. How long until we can expect a full length album?
Chrissy: Hopefully by next year! We haven’t started planning it yet though.
MO: One more question for you, it’s a tricky one, Where would you like to be within the next 5 years?
Chrissy: That’s hard to say, I’d like to be able to say that we sold out Madison Square Garden in the US and Wembley in the UK, and maybe even won a Grammy! But i’ll be happy no matter what if this is still my career.
Thanks to Chrissy for taking the time out to talk to us today.
Rock Forever Magazine interview with Chrissy Costanza, Dan Gow, and Will Ferri from Against The Current. We discussed their YouTube covers, their plans to release new music, life on tour, and more.
Each episode of Bus Invaders takes you inside the touring vehicle of one of today’s top touring acts. In this episode, the pop rock band, Against The Current, shows you around their bus, while on The Outsiders Tour with Metro Station and The Ready Set.
Information about this video:
Band – Against The Current
Film Date – October 26, 2014
Location – Chicago, IL
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Episode 201 – 400 at http://bit.ly/BUSINVADERSplaylist2
Episode 401 – 600 at http://bit.ly/BUSINVADERSplaylist3
Episode 601 – present at http://bit.ly/BUSINVADERSplaylist4
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