Meet your new favorite emo throwback: Orlando’s You Blew It!
While we’re probably never going to agree on whether or not the “emo revival” took place in the past year or two, you could do a lot worse than pointing to a band like Orlando’s You Blew It! as exhibit A in the court case of Music Nerd Opinion.
The band’s second full-length, Keep Doing What You’re Doing (out in January on Topshelf Records), almost sounds like a self-fulfilling prophesy in terms of charging ahead with a specific musical aesthetic.
Compared with last year’s Grow Up, Dude, the band’s latest work exhibits growth as well as a broader palate of musical colors, but at its heart it’s what they’ve been doing all along: intricately interlocking guitar lines that fall in and out of the mix, then coalesce into scintillating crunch on songs like “Award of the Year Award.”
Listen to You Blew It!’s “Award of the Year Award” after the jump.
Keep Doing What You’re Doing was recorded in Chicago with Evan Weiss of Into It. Over It and Matt Jordan, a week that Tanner Jones described as “nothing short of incredible.” We asked the guitarist and vocalist to explain more about breathing life into the 10 tender but sharp-edged tracks that will garner inevitable comparisons to the likes of The Get Up Kids and American Football.
“I think that a lot of people believe — I did, too — that a recording session has to be grueling to be effective, but this one was so far from that. It was incredibly thorough, but I’ve still never smiled as much as I did in the time that we were there. Recording with Evan and the Matts was everything I think music should be. It was uplifting, liberating, constructive, and just very, very fun. I think it was Evan and Matt’s first time recording together as producer and engineer, but they operated like they had been working together for decades. I don’t think we could have hoped for a more symbiotic, fruitful relationship between artist and producer and engineer.”
The departure of bass player Nick Inman, who left to focus on his other band, the decidedly screamier You’ll Live, meant You Blew It! had to improvise on the fly, something that was harder to do than they expected, Jones said. “Bass is a far more complicated instrument than anyone gives it credit for, so I assumed that one of us would play some root notes and call it a day.”
“Evan picked up a bass and completely took the songs under his wing, though. He sat down in a chair and rewrote every bass part on every song. Matt Jordan seemed to be the captain of the recording software, but at some points he would pass it over to Matt Frank whenever he got fatigued and vice versa. It seems kind of like a nonfactor, but I really think that’s what sped the recording process up so much. With the Matts swapping the computer, we didn’t have to stop tracking as much once we got into a groove.”
The recording process was so thorough, in fact, that the team would deconstruct every lyric, melody, drum part, guitar line before committing to it (see: the corrugated shimmer of “House Address”). It was an editing process that yielded better results than they might have had. “As a group of fledgling and idealistic musicians, we needed coaches that were flexible, thorough, and unafraid to push us, and that’s what Matt and Evan were,” Jones said. “You can tell when you listen to it; it is easily the best collection of songs we’ve put out so far, in my opinion.”
+ Listen to You Blew It!’s “Award Of The Year Award.”
Photo credit: Rachel Gulotta