As 2006 comes to an end, Angels & Airwaves are looking back with a strong sense of pride. (We know, big surprise!)
"I think we've all made the record of our lives," singer and resident hype machine Tom DeLonge said, referring to We Don't Need to Whisper (see "Tom DeLonge Says A&A Shows Are 'Like An Ascension To Heaven' "). "It's been a super-spiritual year for our band and for us personally, and I think we've offered something extremely imaginative and futuristic to rock and roll. I also think that I've become a good dancer along the way."
"Yeah, and you've also perfected the art of making the di-- jokes seem really sincere and important," drummer Atom Willard added. "It's like a whole new level of potty."
"Rather than di-- jokes every 30 seconds [as with DeLonge's previous band, Blink-182], we build it up to, like, every hour," DeLonge said. "It's like an epic di-- joke."
So how does a band follow up such enormous accomplishments?
Well, for starters, Angels & Airwaves will make the next "record of [their] lives" as soon as the new year begins. "We have to do a song for a film, and we can't talk about it, but we figured we would record that and then just get going on the record," DeLonge said.
It's hard to say what to expect from the material, except that it will have the same grand vision as Whisper.
"Lyrically, I'm toying around with a couple different things, but as far as the band goes, we think in semantic kind of landscapes," DeLonge said. "We don't really sit around with riffs and go, 'OK, you play that four times and then I'll play that four times.' We talk more about feelings, almost like it's a movie or something — like a big, long crescendo and intros and just atmospheres. It's kind of hard to describe because I've never really done that before, but with this band, that's just the way we do it."
Angels & Airwaves are also working on a documentary on the genesis of the band, as well as a fictional film.
"It has to do with the theme of the album in one great metaphorical thing," DeLonge said cryptically of the latter. "Film is incredible because you get to control the visuals and the audio at the same time. So the ability to reach somebody or make them feel something is much stronger. I think it's been awhile since somebody has been this ambitious, and I would love to try. I think it's going to be quite incredible."
In the meantime, Whisper single "The War" is continuing to gain momentum. "When people desire our presence, we have to accommodate," DeLonge said, hinting that there could be more touring and a follow-up single.
"There's this song called 'A Little's Enough' that is a pretty important song to us and has gotten a pretty strong reaction with people who hear it," DeLonge said. "And it has an incredible message to it, so I'd be excited if that did something."
Angels & Airwaves also recently recorded a Christmas song called "The Star of Bethlehem" for a benefit album from KROQ in Los Angeles.
"It's this nine-minute-long song where the first half of it sounds like Moby did it with us and then the second half sounds like Angels & Airwaves," DeLonge said. "It's kind of an indication of the diversity of our sound and something fun for the holidays, but it's really more to keep putting out material because we only have one album out. So if someone wants us to go and do a song, we make it as long as it can be and it's almost an EP in itself, you know?"