"It doesn't have the same nostalgic feel as our last record" – hmv.com talks to The Menzingers
Philadelphia gutter punks The Menzingers return next week with their new album Rented World and we called up guitarist Tom May to find out how it came together and why they've tried to move on from their nostalgia drenched record On The Impossible Past…
Your album Rented World is due out on Monday, how are you feeling ahead of release?
"There's always a bit of nervousness when you release any new album, but I genuinely can't wait for people to hear it, I'm excited."
So when was the record made?
"We recorded in bursts, in time off between tours. It took five weeks to record, but quite a long time to write. We spent longer writing this one than anything we've ever done before. We spent a long time in our practise space, we wrote a lot of songs."
You recorded the album with Jon Law, who most recently produced The National's Trouble Will Find Me, what was he like to work with?
"It was fantastic. A friend of ours was really close with Jon, he recommended that we try him. It meant we got to stay home and record. He gave us a different perspective and got us try to try some new recording techniques, he pushed us on."
How did working with him come about?
"He recorded a record with this band called Restorations and we were really impressed. We really wanted to stay in Philadelphia and he was here so it made sense. We met up and hung out and it really worked."
Did you record quickly? To try and keep the raw feel you have in your live shows?
"Yeah, it was pretty quick, we wanted to keep a live feel and make sure that things stayed true to who we are as a band."
How do you feel the album moves on from On The Impossible Past?
"It doesn't have as much of a theme as the last one, but we spent a lot more time on the songs, both writing and recording. It's a lot more polished."
What kind of record is it lyrically?
"Pretty political. It doesn't have the same nostalgic feel as our last record, it does a bit, but we're branching out a bit. There's some politics on there without being overtly political."
Have you got the whole year mapped out in terms of touring?
"Yeah, we're touring heavily for the rest of the year. We're pretty booked."
Do you think this record will sit easily in the rest of your set?
"We're working that on it, it will be difficult, but we like to challenge ourselves. We're trying to tie it all together."
Are you able to write on tour?
"Not really. We mess about on tour. Occasionally if we're asked to write something for a compilation, or like last year when we were asked to do a split with Bouncing Souls, we wrote that track on tour. It's not ideal though."
The Menzingers' new album Rented World is due out on Monday (April 21) and can be pre-ordered in store now.