If member shifts, misdirected misogyny claims and a fanatic but fickle fanbase can’t stop BOYS NIGHT OUT, do you really think a highly ambitious, elaborately gruesome concept album can? Yeah, we didn’t think so, either.

STORY: Scott Heisel

“Everyone’s gonna hate the new record.”

You might remember those words, spoken by Boys Night Out vocalist Connor Lovat-Fraser, in AP 198’s Most Anticipated Albums Of 2005 special. Not exactly a ringing endorsement from the singer, unless you actually take the time to get to know him, and realize his personality is one of acerbic wit combined with unfettered honesty. When AP phones Lovat-Fraser this time around and asks if he’s available to speak about the band’s new album, Trainwreck, he responds, “I have such a busy schedule… There’s just so much wine to drink this afternoon.” It’s easy to imagine how this interview might have gone straight down the tubes-but in typical Boys Night Out fashion, Lovat-Fraser recovered, better than ever.

“Did I say that?” he says, laughing, when reminded about his proclamation from eight months prior. “Apparently, I was wrong, because [the album] leaked on the internet, and some people are digging it. But people have been saying exactly what I expected them to say-the people that aren’t down with it, that is.”

Guitarist Jeff Davis elaborates. “[When Connor said that], we were all very frustrated and angry with music, and where we were with the whole scene. We were kind of bitter about the whole thing.”

“The whole thing” isn’t much of an understatement. Boys Night Out have been put through the wringer time and time again, from detractors, fans and even band members. Last summer, as the band were on the road with Saves The Day, drummer Ben Arseneau left the group after the tour’s Pittsburgh stop. Not losing a step (or canceling a show), BNO enlisted Fordirelifesake guitarist Brian Southall to man the drums, beginning the next night in Cleveland.

That wasn’t the last lineup change for the band, either: Guitarist Rob Pasalic was removed from BNO during their headlining tour with Emery last November, for reasons the band have chosen to keep private. What made their bandmates fall by the wayside? “Pressure in general,” Davis says. “Touring non-stop and getting into this lifestyle-the way you’re just thrown into it-is not for everybody. It’s a really, really hard thing. They tried to hack it out, but in the long run, it was doing more harm than good. It was sad as hell. Last year was really, really hard for us. It really, really sucked. But in the long run, it was the best thing for everybody.”

And when there isn’t enough inter-band conflict to hammer out, there’s always the very vocal group of naysayers, who label Boys Night Out as a misogynist band who encourage violence toward women. It’s an opinion based primarily from their previous full-length, 2003’s Make Yourself Sick (sample lyric: “You know that I love you/Now I just can't shut you up, shut you up/So now I have to chop you up, chop you up”). But the band deny any sort of wrongdoing. “Originally, when we first started to get the [misogyny] comments, we were like, ‘Oh, whoa! People are bummed out! Oh, my God! What are we going to do?’” says Lovat-Fraser. “Man, Misfits were singing about all that shit years ago. There’s movies and books that deal with these subjects, too. I don’t see the difference.”

For the rest of the story, pick up AP 206 below…