When and how did All Eyes West become a band?
Basically, in the Spring of last year (2010), Rick and Jeff had been hanging out and decided to jam on a new project. Rick knew me from way back and asked if I was interested in playing bass. I had briefly met Jeff years earlier through a friend in Arizona, funny enough. Anyways, I was down for it. We got together at my space one afternoon and basically wrote the first 2 songs. They felt good and we had a good time playing together, so we just kept it up. Every time we’d play, we’d have a new song or new idea. We just had a good dynamic in the room. So, here we are!
Where did the ‘All Eyes West’ name come from?
It’s paying homage to an old band we all dig!
How is it being a punk band in Chicago right now?
It’s a great city to be in! There’s a pretty diverse scene here. Lots of different stuff going on. Plenty of venues for bands to play. TONS of great bands!
Yeah, it’s great!
You went out to the UK for two weeks in June, how’d that go?
It was such a blast! Our buddy Jimmy Islip (frm The Magnificent) hooked us up big time with that! It was such a great experience! For me, it was my first time over so I was just blown away that we were THERE! The shows were all great! I feel like we really made some fans on that tour. Definitely made some good friends! The UK definitely has a tight scene of bands/promoters going on. The country itself is just beautiful! And the ALES!?!?!? Brilliant!!!
But yeah, it was such a great tour for us. We hope to be back over there soon!
Any big difference in touring the UK than America? Did you find it harder getting shows over there?
We really lucked out with the booking. As I said before, Jimmy really hooked us up big time over there! Cheers, mate!
Touring over there was pretty much the same as over here in the US. I mean, it’s a different country and all, but the scene is pretty similar. People who dig music/art helping out people who make music/art. It seems the scene over there is just a little tighter-knit. But it’s also a lot smaller than the US. In the UK it seems easier to be in touch with what the neighboring cities are doing. It’s cool!
I hear you’re heading back out on the road this fall, what’s that tour shaping up to look like?
I’m hoping it’s a little cooler (temperature-wise) than the tour we just finished! We just got back from a trip out to the East coast. There were heat advisories out, and we’re riding around in a van with no A/C! Some of the shows were just deadly hot! But we still had a blast!
The Fall will see us doing some Midwest/East Coast dates. We’re hoping to get down to the Southern US before years end. Stay tuned!
What’s the best and worst thing about touring?
The best thing is just playing music with your friends in a different city every night! Never seems to get old. On a bad day you can wake up from 2 hours of sleep, feel horrible, sit in a van for 9 hours and start to get super bummed… but then the second you start playing, it all makes sense! It’s all too good of a time!
The worst part would just be missing your loved ones back home. It’s gets hard being away sometimes.
What was making the album like? Any unexpected problems?
Recording the album ended up being just like band practice, in a way. Jeff (guitarist) records over at Million Yen Studios right here in Chicago. So he manned the controls and we just went through our songs a few times. We pretty much flew through it. It was such a comfortable situation. We didn’t over-think it at all. It ended up sounding real good to us, so we thought “let’s just put this out there!”
What did you like best about making this album?
Like I said, it was totally comfortable and there was no pressure. We were just jamming our songs and there just happened to be microphones everywhere. When we went in to record, it really brought us together as a unit. After having the songs on tape we finally felt like a real band! It was a nice turning point in the evolution of the band.
I had heard that the album was going to be released on Academy Fight Song what changed it to Jump
Well, it’s a long story. To sum it up, we were excited to work with Academy Fight Song… but things just weren’t happening the way we wanted. Jeremy at Jump Start had been interested in working with us from the get-go. So, after we decided that AFS wasn’t where we needed to be… we called Jeremy again. Ever since he took over, everything has been great. He’s excited about things and is a hard worker. He’s also a no b/s type of person. We’re super happy working with him! We actually ended up staying with him a couple days on this last tour. He took such good care of us and was a really fun guy to hang out with. PLUS, he brews the most amazing beer and is super generous with it! Ha! Thanks Jeremy!
What are you listening to the most now a days?
Lots of Status Quo!
Any records (besides your own) are you looking forward to this year?
The new Samiam record! Luther (philly) has a record coming out in August. Those guys are great! Also can’t wait to grab the Archers of Loaf reissue! So glad those guys are doing shows this year!
Anything else you want to add?
Thanks to everyone involved in making this band happen!