by Lisa "Sunshine" Svelnys
Host: Hollywood Rock Underground TV
Reporter for Xombiewoof Magazine and IndiePulse Music Journal: LA Correspondent
What’s the POP PUNK scene like in LA? ... THRIVING!
I was at Mal's Bar and fell in love with an INCREDIBLE band! Radio Ready and professional, with hooks, and lyrics just chillin’ with a good vibe you will not want to end, CRASH OVERCAST would be my very first pick for new talent on THE WARPED TOUR. There is no doubt in my mind this incredibly talented trio could pull it off seamlessly while earning an incredible legion of fans.
I got a chance to sit down with Anthony Canal, Alex Kurow, and The Downtown Captain (JD Harris) to talk about CRASH OVERCAST and what's in the future for this pop punk monster they have created, this is what went down....
Lisa: Where are you all from, how did you get together as a band?
Alex: Craigslist, Missed Connections. Only half joking, it was definitely Craigslist though. It’s honestly a great tool for musicians to use to connect.
Anthony: As much as I would like to glamorize the idea of us meeting in a very cool way it was nothing more than meeting online. Was looking through some porn online and saw an ad on the side saying a drummer was needed.
JD: Yep that’s pretty much it. While looking online I came across an ad on Craigslist in the casual encounters section looking for a bassist and I thought it sounded fun to do something a little different than what I’ve been doing.
Lisa: Who are your major musical influences?
Alex: We all grew up listening to punk rock in all of its forms, but specifically this band draws from more of the pop punk subgenre. We definitely cite the bigger bands in the genre as our influences like Blink 182, Green Day, New Found Glory, Jimmy Eat World, All Time Low, Fall Out boy, and Taking Back Sunday. We pull influence from some of the more aggressive bands in that scene as well like Four Year Strong, A Day to Remember, and Set Your Goals. Oh, and can’t forget NSYNC.
Anthony: I’m sticking with Blink 182, Four Year Strong, Set You Goals, With The Punches and more importantly Josie And The Pussycats, anything with high energy and fast beats.
JD: Blink 182 really started it all for me; once I heard Enema of the State I was hooked. From there used their influences to discover new music and grow from there. There are so many bands in and out of the related genre I look too but New Found Glory, The Ataris, Four Year Strong, A Day to Remember and All Time Low are a few that come to mind.
Lisa: Who does your songwriting? What is your process?
Alex: We all contribute to each song in different ways. Typically a song will start with one idea that somebody throws down for the band to hear, and then we snowball it from there. Sometimes it starts with an opening riff, sometimes it will start with a progression, or sometimes it will start with a vocal melody. From there we piece it together. One of the most fun parts of writing is, once a song is almost fully fleshed out, embellishing it with little fills and breaks.
JD: I think we have a unique dynamic because all of us play guitar and love to write so it’s not just left up to one person to come up with the guitar parts or bass lines or drum parts. We all have our hand in the writing for all the instruments.
Lisa: What do you want your fans to come away with after a show?
Alex: We definitely want people to walk away feeling that they were able to let go of whatever was bothering them and jump around and have a great time. That’s one of the reasons why we’re up there doing it too! So hopefully we can send those vibes out to the audience.
Anthony: The most important thing is the experience. We want them to leave with our best foot forward whether it's the energy, certain song or even a phrase that stuck with them, or a friendship made because we would love to chat and make a connection which anyone who enjoyed the show we worked hard to put on.
JD: Yea, I mean I think we want people to have fun with us and enjoy the music. We love doing everything from writing to practice which all leads to the live show and that connection. It’s all about just having fun together, the fans make it fun for us and I hope we make the performance fun for the fans.
Lisa: What do you think about when you are on stage?
Alex: I’m usually thinking about when the next break in the song is for me to snag a quick
drink of Peach Tranquility Tea (anybody who knows me know I’m addicted to this wonderful Starbucks confection). The stuff helps with your voice immensely, and let’s just say I could use all the help I could get.
Anthony: Meaningful answer: We are up here and they cared enough to come see us so let’s have fun and give them a great show. Real Answer: why is this hot light in my face? Do they like us? What if they don’t like us? … I LIKE US !!!!
JD adds = “Wait... do I like us?” Ha ha, I need a drink.
Lisa: What drives you as a band?
Alex: Being able to put all of our collective ideas out into the world and to have them resonate with others.
Anthony: Knowing that if we work hard enough that we can make this an everyday thing. At this point playing music is all we want to do.
JD: As Anthony said at this point all we want to do is play music. I think writing great songs and playing them for as many people as often as we can really drives the passion.
Lisa: What makes it a "FUN" show for you?
Alex: Really getting into it and displaying dance moves that have yet to be invented.
Anthony: Having a cold beer by my drums and making silly faces to anyone who makes eye contact with me.
JD: Having 15 fans or 15 drinks show up either way it is going to be fun. In some cases both show up then it’s really a party, Haha but seriously… haha actually it’s fun if people enjoy themselves. Playing the music I love makes it fun every show and watching Alex’s new dance moves.
Lisa: What's the best part of being in a rock band?
JD: Being in touch with the music. It’s real. It’s us playing live and it’s loud energetic and fun.
Alex: Definitely what JD said, it’s a raw display of energy. All three of us are big fans of the genre, and as fans, we understand how visceral the exchange of energy is when you really
connect with what a band is doing on stage. We want to pump energy into this scene.
Lisa: What are the craziest things you were asked to do in *other bands? What would be the craziest thing you would do for this band?
Anthony: On tour back in 2011 and the venue we were playing that night brought a six foot long sub. No one in the band seemed interested and since I come from a family that doesn’t waste food I ate the whole thing by myself….I puking on stage in a bag between songs but the show must go on. … I’d eat a 12 foot long for this band any day.
JD: Haha I’d do anything for these guys and this band. But the craziest thing, ... I would be willing to feed Anthony that 12 foot long sandwich. Just for you guys, especially you Anthony.
Alex: Hahahah, I second that for sure, I’d eat a 12 foot long sub for this band, as long as there was no ranch on it. I know, people think I’m crazy for not liking ranch, I’m entitled to my ranch-less life though.
JD: WTF?! No ranch dude?! Ranch is amazing! ... Don’t worry I’d lick the ranch off for you Alex and give you back the Sub.
Lisa: What is your favorite song you are playing now? How does it resonate with you?
Anthony: I personally love a new song we wrote called “Already Gone” Traditional pop punk song with fast drum parts, can’t ask for a better song to play.
JD: Yea, ‘Already Gone’ is definitely a great tune and close to one of my favorites but I’m going to have to go with Adjustments. I love the bass line in the chorus, the slight breakdown feel in has in the intro and bridge and the overall upbeat feel of the song it’s just so much fun from start to finish. (Plus I like that the song is about flipping your boner into your waistband in public because I mean who hasn’t been there right?! Wait Alex that is what the song about
Alex: I love Truly Easy and Already Gone, We are going to release both of those songs online soon, and they are so much fun to play live. I love the half time bouncy chorus in Truly Easy, and I love the palm muted parts in Already Gone that sync up with the bass and the kick drum. Well, it syncs up when I don’t mess it up haha, I guess I enjoy it because it’s challenging for me to play.
Lisa: If you could tour with anyone.... What would be your "dream gig"?
JD: Oh man there's just so many. Can it just be a massive tour with Blink 182, New Found Glory, All Time Low, and State Champs and maybe like 50 other great bands? Like a warped tour situation with all my favorite bands. Can we make that happen?
Alex: Definitely all of what JD said. Getting on a bill with a band like All Time Low would be a dream for sure. Personally I think it would be epic to tour with Fight Fair if they were to ever get back together.
Lisa: What advice would you give a band trying to make it in LA?
Anthony: Play as many shows as you can, don’t take things or people for granted, never burn your bridges, be professional as possible when dealing with higher ups and most importantly DON'T start a band with people you can’t call your best friends. Yes, being in a band could be somewhat of a business between each other but it doesn't mean anything if the person is nothing more than a member in the band.
JD: That’s a tough one. I think Anthony really covered it. It’s all about making connections and playing with friends. When you play with friends you’re more willing to make it work. It will always be hard and if you have a great group of friends to go through it with it makes the fight worth it.
Alex: Agreed with both Anthony and JD for sure. As far as the technical aspects are concerned, make sure to have your equipment in peak condition. Both Anthony and JD have helped me out a lot as a musician as far as being prepared with equipment at gigs. You never know what could happen. Oh, and the sound guy is your friend, make sure to know when your levels aren’t quite right and how to adjust them for your live set.
I'm really excited to see how far CRASH OVERCAST can take it. Professional, fun, memorable vibe you will want to hear again and again, make sure you grab a demo for the car ride home, you will surprise yourself how long it will stay in your play deck. It's a keeper.
Watch their exclusive interview view with me and video showcase for, in MY opinion, THE SMASH HIT, "Adjustments".
Connect with CRASH OVERCAST today! They are ready to tour and would love to see you at one of their upcoming shows: