About a month before The Maine released their latest album Forever Halloween, I got to catch up and ask guitarist Kennedy Brock about the new album, maturing as a band, and what the band is going to do next.
HST – In the past five years , you guys have transformed yourselves from Warped Tour darlings to independent rock stars. How has this journey been for you guys?
Kennedy Brock: Everything has been a natural progression for us. It’s never been discussed where our music should go, it just finds it’s own path as we continue to create it. More recently, the goal for us has been to take things into our own control. Our independence has been the real objective.
HST – When you guys left Warner Bros., was there a conscience effort to strip away the Warped Tour style you guys were making with your first two albums, or was it just time to mature your sound with Pioneer?
KB: Pioneer was actually recorded about a year before we left Warner Brothers. During the writing process, we were living together and constantly throwing ideas around. I don’t think we realized how diverse our writing would become. There wasn’t a conscious effort to change our style, it just seemed to evolve that way.
HST – In an ever changing musical climate, do you guys feel like you are a part of a “dying breed?”
KB: We are solely concerned with keeping integrity in our music. We are human, and our music should reflect that. We just happen to be going in an opposite direction than a lot of current artists, as computer editing becomes the norm.
HST – The Maine’s fourth album, Forever Halloween, is like Pioneer in that its a self funded studio album. How was the making of and funding for Halloween better or worse than Pioneer?
KB: This time around we knew what the process of releasing the album was going to be like. Pioneer was an eye opening experience. Obviously, it is a chore to do things on your own, but the positives from the creative control completely outweighed the increased workload.
HST – You guys are obviously shooting for something exponentially darker with Forever Halloween. What is the reasoning for turning this direction with this album?
KB: The vibe of the album isn’t exactly darker. Visually yes. Musically though, we have quite a few different moods on the album. The goal was to simply write a rock album. May the best song win, dark and mysterious or not.
HST – This time around, you guys worked with The Raconteurs’ Brendan Benson. How did this collaboration come around and how was it working with him?
KB: His name was not even discussed, until we were pretty far into the process of producer searching. I remember thinking, recording with him was a long shot, but in the end, he was just as excited about the project as we were. Brendan showed us a whole new way of doing things. A process of recording that we will use in the future without a doubt. It felt incredible to be able to earn the respect of someone we look up to.
HST – It seems like this time around, you guys are performing more ballads and down tempo songs throughout Halloween, including “Birthday in Los Angeles” and “These Four Words.”
Is there any reasons for this change in pace?
KB: Aside from those two tracks, the album is pretty upbeat. We tried to keep songs on the album concise and packed with energy. I personally feel like this album has a good mix of the fast and the slow, maybe even a little livelier than our previous works.
HST – Would you guys consider Forever Halloween as your most ambitious album to date?
KB: I think the way it was recorded, is the ambitious part. Recording live and to tape was a new process for us and required some extra planning on our part. I think it will forever change the way our band writes and records.
HST – After the album’s release on June 4th, what’s next for The Maine?
KB: We will be on the road for the rest of this year, once the album drops. I am excited to be back in the swing of things after a couple months off!
The Maine’s new album, Forever Halloween, is available to purchase now from you favorite music retailer. You can check out the second single to come off the album, “Love And Drugs,” below. Don’t forget to check out the main this summer, touring alongside A Rocket To The Moon, Brighten, and This Century.