Home > Interviews > Q&A: With Confidence at Slam Dunk Festival, Midlands – May 2016

Q&A: With Confidence at Slam Dunk Festival, Midlands – May 2016

Carrie Humphries


Hello Jayden and Luke! What can people expect from your set at Slam Dunk Festival today?

Jayden: I’m going to say tonnes of energy, a bit of sweat, a few people crying…. I don’t know….

Luke: Just a lot of fun in general.

This month you’ve been doing a tour of the UK with As It Is. Is this your first tour of the UK and how did it go?

Jayden: It is our second ever international tour. We played Japan before this with The Wonder Years and Roam. This is the first time that we’ve been to the UK, and I think that we were received so much better than we imagined we would. We didn’t know what to expect; but there were so many people singing the songs and jumping on each other each night, it was insane.

Luke: It was great to do it with the As It Is guys because we’ve toured with them previously in Australia. I’ve got to say that they are probably some of our best friends in the whole world now. It was a really good starting experience of the UK.

Has the experience of touring over here been any different to touring in Australia, or has it been much the same?

Jayden: I think Australia and the UK aren’t too dissimilar. I think it’s more the fact that when you’re in a new place, it just has that vibe you know? It’s new, and it feels like anything is possible where you are. So we’ve had that feeling for this whole tour, like everything is new and everything is so incredible. I think that’s the main difference even though the two countries aren’t too different.

Luke: I think one of the main differences is that you can’t do a 17 date long tour in Australia. You can do maybe 5, 6, 7 shows. Those are spread out, maybe a couple of days here and there. This tour has been almost 17 shows consecutively, including Slam Dunk. It’s the first time that we have ever done something like that and it has taken some getting used to, but it’s been incredible. It’s a really, really good routine waking up every day and playing music.

Are there any venues that you haven’t played yet but would like to play in the future?

Luke: Madison Square Garden!

Jayden: I’d love to play House of Blues, or maybe the Sydney Opera House.

Luke: I’m going to aim high here. What’s higher than Madison Square Garden? Ummm…. I want to play in The Louvre!

Jayden: I don’t know if they’d let us do it. Unless we make very weird expressionist music after this.

Luke: We’ll do it! We’ll do it nude!

This year you signed to the American label Hopeless Records, which is home to all sorts of bands like All Time Low, Avenged Sevenfold and Thrice. How did that come about and do you feel like you have quite big shoes to fill?

Jayden: We’ve had a couple of EPs out now, but we wrote one called Distance, and in my opinion we did pretty well with that. Hopeless picked that up and had a listen to it straight away, and they were like; “We love what we heard, we want to work with you.” We did all the paperwork and stuff, then before we knew it, things were rolling. Anyway, yes, we do have massive shoes to fill! The bands on that label are some of the bands that we grew up listening to; there’s also some massive heritage bands on there as well.

Luke: There’s bands like Sum 41, Taking Back Sunday, The Used.

Jayden: We’re going to try our god damn best, definitely. I mean, we haven’t even got our debut album out yet, but I think the collective influence of all those bands on Hopeless that we do listen to will have a good representation. I mean, we couldn’t ask for a better label, they’ve been so co-operative and nice to us thus far.

Luke: And helpful.

Jayden: Yeah, they’re just a genuine team of people who really care about music; so it’s cool.

Over the last few months you guys have released the single Keeper, and you recently dropped another single called Higher. How has the reception been to the new singles and some of the newer songs that you have been performing while touring?

Luke: It’s been good. While we’re talking about some of the songs we’ve been performing while touring; it’s good to gauge reactions on tour. For example, Higher came out the night before the first show of the tour and there was still a large proportion of the crowd singing along when it’d had only been out for 12 hours. It’s crazy when you think about it really.

Jayden: I don’t really know what else to say. I guess you just judge it by the amount of kids singing at shows and the response you get online. We’ve had a few people saying things like “Look, your song, Keeper helped me” and feedback like that helps me judge the success of a song too.

Your debut album Better Weather is out next month. What can everyone expect from that?

Luke: I think that the things that we have released are reasonably representative of what to expect. We do have the poppier stuff, but we also have the heavier, more serious stuff. We’ve also got a whole bunch of songs in between and also a few that are a little left field. For a ten-track album, each song is really its own thing; we’re proud of the fact that no two songs really sound the same.

Jayden: I wouldn’t go in expecting just a pop-punk album. Obviously, there’s elements of it, but I feel like we’ve mixed it up. Hopefully people will like it. Fingers crossed.

Slam Dunk Festival is really well known for its fun after-parties as well as being a great festival. What sort of music gets you ready to party on a night out?

Luke: Oooh. I think it really depends on what we might be doing and where we might be going. Nothing really beats good late nineties, early noughties pop-punk for me. All the classics.

Jayden: I also back the pop-punk playlist. Also, maybe a few heavier bands in the mix as well; which helps me get pumped up. That, or Nickelback’s greatest hits…. Our manager has this thing where he just tortures us relentlessly by playing Nickelback. He tells me not to fight it!

Finally, what plans have you guys got for the rest of the year?

Jayden: We have a pretty hectic schedule this year regarding touring. Also a few other things that have been announced, and a few other things that have not been. There are also conversations going on at the moment about some other stuff as well. We release the album next month, which is exciting; so we also get to tour and play heaps of new stuff that we’ve never played before. There will be some more music videos and also a few things that we’ve never done before. We like to throw a spanner in the works; we don’t want to be that band that just releases an album and videos and tours. We definitely want to keep this ball rolling and do some cool stuff. Expect some cool things coming up from us!