(Photo by: Gene Smirnov)
EVERY AVENUE frontman DAVE STRAUCHMAN takes AP track by track through the band’s third album, Bad Habits.
“Tie Me Down”
We have all been used by people—or, possibly, used them. Some people are just bad for you, but we push that aside because we settle for the temporary feelings we get out of them. “Tie me down and f**k me up” pretty much means, “Do whatever the hell you want with me, because I don't care.”
“Whatever Happened To You”
This is a song about a friend I had growing up that used to be a best friend. I did everything with them, and got in some crazy shit with them. Over the years, we grew apart, and I watched the person become someone I didn't know at all. I questioned what I ever had in common with them. It sucks when that happens, but we have to learn our lessons from it and move on.
No matter what we do with our lives, we all get to a point where we sometimes feel burnt out and feel like we need a break. During the writing process of this record, trying to balance everything going on in my life at home and being in the band was hard. I felt helpless that I couldn’t do anything about it. This is what I do, and it’s what I love, but sometimes it puts a strain on relationships and being there for my family. This song was really just expressing the frustration I felt with it. Sometimes this lifestyle can be difficult, but I still love it.
The lyric “the empty space you left behind” in “Fall Apart” sums up this song. When a relationship ends, it rarely just “ends.” You get used to that person being there; you associate them with memories of different places [and] different songs, and those feelings can sometimes remain beyond a relationship finishing. It can really tear you down, especially when you are the one fighting to keep them, and they just don't see what they are doing to you—or what they have done to you. We sometimes hang on for too long, even though we know how much that person will hurt us, and it makes you want that person to go though the same hurt they caused you to see how it really feels.
“No One But You”
This song is about a one-night stand, plain and simple!
“Only Place I Call Home”
This track has a similar theme to “There Tonight.” Being a musician is a different lifestyle than living at home or having a real job. You are constantly gone, and you never really know when you're going to be home next or how long you’re gonna be home for. It's hard to leave your relationships for a long period of time, and it can be taxing on the person you leave. You’re always busy; you might only get to call and talk for a few minutes a day. They might be busy with work or school, and you might not talk at all for a few days. Aside from our lifestyles, this song is about the constant reassurance we all have to give in every type of relationship, and the experience of just missing someone.
This follows on from “Only Place I Call Home,” but [it’s] more of a reflection on how things have changed since we have been touring and gone from home for long periods of time. It's crazy to see how things change—what old friends are doing and how different things feel every time we get back. Hopefully, it's a long time before we are done touring and making music, but someday we might get the chance to have a family and a house. Shit, I just hope there is a Jimmy John’s I can walk to when I get home.
“Hit Me Where It Hurts”
This song is not about “Oh, you wanna break up?” but more like, “Bitch! You keyed my car and smashed my guitars!?” Sometimes people just make you do the dumbest shit when you are with them, and you have no idea why. The only answer I have: Some people really are crazy.
“I Can’t Not Love You”
In a relationship, you might not always know what you want, and [you] might question how you actually feel about the emotions you have. When you try to push it away and deal with it, you might realize what you really feel about that person. Sometimes, you just need your space to figure out your feelings.
“Watch The World”
As the record is called Bad Habits, this song is all about our bad habits. Our band loves to have a good time. You might be able to tell, but this song is all about just letting go and saying “F**k it.” Sometimes you need to, y’know? Hopefully this record will help you do the same when you need to.