EXPECT IT: Summer via Fearless
Michigan rockers Every Avenue wrapped up their third full-length, Bad Habits, late last week. The band put the finishing touches on the album at Los Angeles’ Barefoot Studios with producer Mark Weinberg, although they recorded the bulk of the album in Seattle with producer Aaron Sprinkle.
Every Avenue vocalist Dave Strauchman says the band had wanted to work with Sprinkle in the past, but their schedules didn’t quite line up. It was worth the wait, however. “Sometimes [producers] can make a band sound too much like other bands, or [albums] just have a sound that sounds like, ‘Oh, you worked with this producer,’” Strauchman says. “Aaron is the kind of guy [that] no matter what band he works with, he understands the band [and] he makes the band sound like [themselves]. Aaron [brings] out the best of what makes [a] band sound the way they do. …He was all about trying everything, doing everything, making mistakes.”
Accordingly, Bad Habits will be closer to capturing the Every Avenue live experience—and won’t be quite as polished as 2009’s Picture Perfect. “I feel like the last record had a little bit more of a pop vibe to it,” Strauchman says. “You come and see Every Avenue live, and we’re a rock band, we’ve always been a rock band. I feel like this new record sounds like what we sound like live. It’s a little harder than the last one. There’s a lot of uptempo stuff on it; [it’s] a little more aggressive. I’m pretty sure we’re going to get a parental advisory on this record, so that’s exciting,” he adds, laughing.
The harder direction is a logical progression for Every Avenue, especially when considering their tireless touring schedule. “We’ve always been a live band, a band that’s been on tour pretty much the majority of the year,” Strauchman explains. “We always felt like sometimes people would get our record and be like, ‘Oh, this is maybe a little different than what I expected after watching their live show.’ We just wanted to make a record that sounded like us getting together and playing these songs live in a room. I feel like that is what we did.”
Bad Habits’ lyrics of course address, um, bad habits, although the album delves into some serious topics as well. “We got asked a question the other day: ‘Is every song about a girl?’” Strauchman says. “No, not every song’s about a girl. I feel like sometimes we write songs that aren’t about a girl, but they come across that way. We had a friend that passed away, and there’s a song about her. [It’s] about, I guess, you could say death in general, pretty much coping with that. There’s songs about bad habits—drinking, smoking, all that stuff, you name it. And there’s just some really fun songs on there too, about having a good time and pretty much just life in general. We really touched on a lot of different topics on this record, and that was one thing I was really excited about.”
Indeed, thanks to Bad Habits, enthusiasm abounds in the Every Avenue camp. “This is going to be the record that I think everyone wanted from us,” he says. “We’re extremely excited about it. I don’t think any of us have ever been this excited about a record that we’ve put out. Everyone in the band is just so stoked on it; we love all the songs. We’re excited to play these songs, [because they’re] really going to bring a lot more to our live show, too." alt