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Interview: The Swifts

The Swifts are bringing old school pop punk back in a big way. Their killer new album All Sunshine is brimming with hooks, catchy choruses and overall excellent song structure. All Sunshine was recorded and produced by Ahrue Luster of Ill Niño and Machine Head fame.

What’s the history of the band as told by your favorite fictional character?

The story of The Swifts as told by Invader Zim:

Some Foolish earth creatures asked The Swifts to play a gig. Their inferior brains had no way of knowing The Swifts were going to be hatched to conquer the liquor sales of that entire evening!

But our liquor domination aside, we started out like any Earth band Larva. We played to a lot of empty rooms often until we upgraded our craft and learned how to hypnotize Earth creatures with our own creative energies.  The Swifts also switched drummers and recorded a new album titled All Sunshine .. Don’t be fooled, this is not just any recording, All Sunshine is an album that will lead The Swifts into total Earth domination and spell DOOM to all Earth creature tribute bands!

Please describe The Swifts playing style.

Mike:  We are a pop punk band that at times ventures into surf punk/garage rock.  We try to keep things melodic and high energy with enough twists and turns to keep you guessing.

What lessons were learned during the recording of your new album All Sunshine? Is there anything you would have done differently?

Mike:  The biggest lesson I learned is that it’s a lot of work to record a full length record.  It requires a lot of time and focus. However, I’m really happy with how it turned out and I honestly wouldn’t change anything.  I owe a lot of that to Ahrue Luster from Ill Nino, who produced All Sunshine. He did a great job leading us through the process and helping create a product we are proud of.

Have you begun writing any new songs yet? If so how are they coming along?

Yes, we have several new songs written.  However, we haven’t played any of them live yet.  I think as a band you’re always excited to play new material, but we’re holding off a bit wanting to make sure we focus on the songs on All Sunshine.

What was the last song you listened to before this interview? All band members chime in please.

Mike : Born to Cry by the Biters

Rob: Paid with Brains by Direct Hit

Rich: Rotten Apple by Alice In Chains

Jim: High ‘n’ Dry by Def Leppard

Top 2 stupidest things you’ve ever done that you can actually talk about. All band members chime in please.

Mike: Nothing.  I’ve never done anything stupid.  Ever.

Rob: There are so many, i don’t know which two are the stupidest.  We just announced an important partnership between the band and Ross Audibles, I was tasked with bringing a Ross distortion pedal to our meeting.  I showed up without the pedal and we took pictures holding beer instead of a pedal. I feel like that ranks high.

Rich:  Back in the days of longer hair, I once cracked my skull open on a counter in an El Torito bathroom. Concussion, 4 stitches…. That was pretty stupid. Oh, and the time I stayed up all night at a party and had to play a morning show of Man of La Mancha the next morning. During the performance I was playing a Bolero rhythm that lasted for about 8 minutes and managed to nod off somewhere in the middle…  It was kind of funny because when I woke up, the director was looking at me like “are you ok? What the hell are you doing?”

Jim: I’m kind of shocked that I’m still alive to be able to talk to you. The list is long and distinguished, and I’m not gonna bore you with the details.

If you could accomplish one thing in a music career what would it be?  When you achieve that will you quit?

Mike: That’s a really good question.   I would love to play something like Riot Fest.  Just to share a stage with so many bands that have inspired me for so many years.  I don’t care if we had to play out behind the porta-potties, it would still count.

Rob: Agreed, a really good question. I feel the same as Mike, but I’m going to expand a little on this.  Not just one Riot Fest, I would like to see The Swifts as a first choice for all major festivals.

Rich: I would like to be able to play  well within any genre of music. No, I’ll never quit playing…  I’ll play till I die.

Jim: I just wanna play Red Rocks to a packed house. I don’t think that’s too much to ask. And no, I won’t quit.

If you were facing unbeatable and fatal odds what song would you want to check out to?

Mike: I Want to be Sedated : Ramones

Rob: SATO/Diary of a Madman – Ozzy

Rich: Talk to ya Later – The Tubes

Jim: 10 Ton Brick – Hurt

We heard Mike is a skater. Which is rad. How’s that going? Mike, what’s your board setup? And is there anyone else in The Swifts who skate?

Mike:  I really love skating and have for a very long time.   I have a lot more fun with it now than I did when I was younger.  When I was younger I was very competitive and would get frustrated easily if I wasn’t progressing.  Now that I’m old I don’t care about any of that. I can just appreciate being out there. I ride a 8 inch deck, Independent trucks, Spitfire 53mm wheels. I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who skates.

Who’s the craziest band member? Who is the most “normal”? Why?

Mike:  Rich is the craziest and I can’t talk about why.  I don’t think any of us are normal. Given that we play in this band, I think we all suffer from some delusional.

Rob: No idea. Maybe Mike seems pretty normal. The craziest person affiliated with The Swifts is our friend Groovey. He makes great scary movies, but then endures the embarrassment of being in public with The Swifts!

Rich who?  Jimbo is a madman!!!  I’m the normal one… so am I…

Jim: Man, that’s a loaded question. There is no “normal” musician that I’ve ever met. Everyone is crazy, and if they say they’re not, they are crazy and lying to you.

Any conspiracy followers in the band? What’s some of your favorites? Any Mandella Effect folks in The Swifts?

Mike:  Ok, I just had to look up what the Mandella Effect is.  I’m totally freaking out now. You’re telling me the Monopoly guy doesn’t have a goddamned monocle????

Rich: Just because I’m paranoid, doesn’t mean that they’re not out to get me.  Also, why wear pants at all?  Think about it…

What’s the plan for the rest of 2019?

Mike:  The plan is to play a bunch of shows, keep writing songs and enjoy this crazy ride.

What would you like to say to your fans both old and new?

Mike: I would just like to say thank you to anyone that’s ever come out to a show, bought a CD or streamed a song.  We don’t take it for granted and it’s not lost on us that you have a million probably better things to do. We salute you.

All Sunshine:
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/5TUTnEWGZnZqce9wl07Bn9
Bandcamp: https://theswiftsrock.bandcamp.com/album/all-sunshine

Connect with The Swifts:

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