Sleeping With Sirens are due in Australia in April, starting out in Sydney on the 21st, in support of their latest album, ‘Gossip’. We were lucky enough to have a chat with rhythm guitarist and all around nice guy, Nick Martin, ahead of the tour. Read on to hear what he had to say about ‘Gossip’, touring, writing and more!
The first thing this interviewer asked Nick was if he was excited to come out to Australia as it’s been almost 2 years since they were out. Nick’s response was “We can’t wait to come out! It feels like so much longer than two years since we’ve been back!” Nick was right, the last time Sleeping With Sirens were in Australia was back in 2015, which this interviewer will be sure to tell Nick when she sees him. Nick went on to say “whenever we start talking touring plans, Australia is always one of the first places to come up, we always have a really good time there.” This interviewer asked Nickif the warmer weather in Australia was a draw and he almost sounded relieved when he answered “We just got done playing some shows in Canada and the weather was sometimes in the minus so we’re definitely looking forward to some beautiful Australian weather.” Let’s just hope our nice weather holds out until April when Nick and the rest of the band are out!
Sleeping With Sirens have just finished up the North America & Canadian leg of the ‘Gossip’ tour and this interviewer asked Nick how it went. “It was a lot of fun, we had a really cool set, all the shows were amazing, it was crazy, it was so crazy.” Nick says, and went on to say “We’d arrive at some of the venues and there’d be kids that had been camping out since 5am. It’s very humbling to see how dedicated our fans are. We also asked how the new songs had been received by fans live, to which Nick responded “Really really well, sometimes you get a bit nervous going into a new record. Surprisingly on this run, some of the new songs were the most well receipted.”
This interviewer asked Nick if he had a new song off of ‘Gossip’ and he answered with “My favourite song off the record right now is probably Empire To Ashes or One Man Army.” For long time fans of Sleeping With Sirens, or even just a casual listener, there is a noticeable difference in the sound of ‘Gossip’, when compared to previous releases like ‘Madness’ and ‘Feel’, when this interviewer asked Nick about the change, he had this to say. “I think ‘Madness’ our previous record kind of bridged the gap to this one, I think that if we had of gone from the album before that and then jumped into this record it would have been a bit of a stretch.” Nick went on to further elaborate that he thought ‘Gossip’ was a natural progression for the band. “It’s different, I think that’s important to us, that we’ve gotten older and what inspired us has changed, and the music reflects that.” He also went on to say “It took a lot of time, it took a lot of writing to get to that final product and we’re really proud of it.”
The next question this interviewer asked was about the writing process, we wanted to know if the band wrote individually, or together. “It’s all of that you know, every song is different. Some songs Kellin has (Vocalist Kellin Quinn), Kellin might be humming something that’s some sort of melody in his head. Sometimes it’s just Jack (Guitarist Jack Fowler) or I will have a guitar riff and that’ll inspire Kellin to write something to it but it’s always changing.” This interviewer asked Nick how, when playing live, he and fellow Sleeping With Sirens guitarist Jack Fowler decided who played which guitar part. This got a laugh out of Nick and he candidly told us “Jack is a much better guitar player I am.” Nick laughed again and went on to talk about Jack’s musical prowess and ability before saying “how we decide it live is I’m basically just the rhythm player, and I kinda hang back with our bass player (Justin Hills) and Jack is the wild guy who handles all the crazier bits.”
In regards to playing live shows, this interviewer asked what Nick’s favourite song to play live is, and why, and he had this to say. “Right now it’s either Empire To Ashes, or One Man Army off our new record. Also old songs, I love playing Kick Me, and If You Can’t Hang.” We also asked Nick if he was ever surprised with the responses to certain songs live. “Absolutely, it changes city by city you know. Sometimes we’ll go a whole week with the same reactions to the same songs, and then one night you’ll have different reactions to different songs. You never really know.”
Set lists are sometimes a hard thing to put together, and when you’re Sleeping With Sirens and have five albums, that gets harder. This interviewer asked Nick how the band put theirs together. “We read our Twitter, and our Instagram, and look at our Spotify and we see what the kids are listening to. We know we have nostalgic fans that want to hear the old stuff but, but we’re really good at building setlists that cater to all out fans.” We also asked if the setlist ever changed during the tour depending on how fans reacted, to which Nick said “It’s not necessarily the fans reactions, it’s more about the flow of the set, or how Kellin feels, maybe he’s feeling disconnected so we’ll try something different or a different song.”
Finally this interviewer asked if the band had any pre-show rituals, with another laugh, one of many Nick shared with us during the interview, he had this to say. “It usually involves some whiskey, some music in the green room to kind of hype us up. Naturally we’re all pretty hyper people, especially Justin, if you’re ever feeling kinda down he’s the one to go to.” If you’re curious as to what Sleeping With Sirens listen to before they play, Nick told us it included “The new Fall Out Boy record, some Andrew WK, or we’ll put on some Knocked Loose. Definitely faster music, no uh, no Kenny G or anything like that.”
Nick’s final message for us was that 2018 “We wanna catch people of guard in the best way possible. That involves some pretty wild touring plans, it may include some new music, and some really exciting things for our fans.”