Following their big rock star support slot on the Kerrang! Tour, Philly’s The Wonder Years return to Kingston for a show that’s a lot more suited to them; tonight, it’s all about stage dives and high fives.
In what seems forever ago, Faye caught up with Dan ‘Soupy’ Campbell, frontman of The Wonder Years, while they were over in the UK before the almighty Slam Dunk Festival. The pair had a chat about his love/hate relationship with our isle, the release of The Upsides and how it leaked one month early on Christmas Eve – the same day he nearly killed an old lady, which, I assure you, was completely unintentional and unrelated.
Faye: How are you today? You told me you were tired before.
Soupy: I am tired, but I’m happy. It hasn’t even been that rainy. You see, I’m have this cool polarising relationship with UK, because there are some parts about it that I fucking love, like when I get to see my friends we haven’t seen forever, and I get to go to Le Pub and see everybody from Newport and all the Save Your Breath guys, and last night, we got to hang out with everybody in Basement, and those dudes are such sweethearts. Then there’s also all these frustrating elements of touring over here, like when you have sound guys for rooms that cap out at like 75, like why are you mic-ing my amp? It’s already too loud! Then they don’t have space for merch, they have a huge sound booth and no where to put t-shirts, I lose my mind. We’re obviously not a very big band, there’s probably not going to be anyone here tonight, so we couldn’t afford to bring our merch guy over, so we try to run around and do it. It’s kind of frustrating sometimes, but at the same time, I kind of think about how I get to hang out with so many cool people. It’s like the conditions are frustrating because we’re not used to them – not our van, there’s not our kind of food, I’ve been getting real sick because all I’ve been eating is chips and cheese, and the venues aren’t set up the way we’re used to and things like that, but, at the same time, we get to hang out with so many great people.
Faye: You were last over in July, can you give me a rundown of what’s been happening since then?
Soupy: Shit, ok, as soon as we got home, we recorded the record, it’s called The Upsides and it came out in January, then after recording it we went on tour with A Loss For Words and Energy. Then we did a couple of weeks with Fireworks and then the record came out, and we did a big record release tour, and then we did a tour with Therefore I Am and Man Overboard, then a tour with Set Your Goals and Comeback Kid. Oh, and one with We Are the Union and Such Gold. Now we’re here, then we go home and record four more songs for the deluxe edition of The Upsides for Hopeless Records who we just signed to, it’s going to come out in the Fall. We have a Streetlight Manifesto tour and then we do a New Found Glory and Lemuria tour, and then we’re doing an Australian tour, and that brings me through September when The Upsides re-release comes out with one totally new full band song, one totally new acoustic song, then we re-worked Logan Circle and an acoustic version of Washington Square Park. So, it’s going to be a busy year.
Faye: How did signing to Hopeless Records came together?
Soupy: How it recently came together is that they sent an email saying they liked our record and that we should talk, but I had spoken to them before. We were talking to Eulogy and I like John Wylie, who runs Eulogy, and a lot of people don’t like him, a lot of my friends don’t like him, but he’s always been nice to me, he’s a nice guy and supportive our band. Then we kept saying we should sign to Eulogy because No Sleep Records – which is a great label and I love Chris very much – it just doesn’t have a lot of resources, it’s just one guy working out of his mom’s apartment, and Eulogy has all these resources, but at the same time, I didn’t want it to be a defining factor for our band that we’re on a hardcore label when we’re not a hardcore band, because that puts us in the hardcore when we’re not that. So, we had that discussion a lot and I was talking to the guys from a band called Years Spent Cold about it, and they were like, “Well, it sounds like you don’t want to sign to Eulogy, so don’t. If you want to sign to Hopeless then hold out until you get Hopeless.” And it’s funny that a year-and-a-half later, it actually ended up being Hopeless. When we were talking to Eulogy, we sent out a bunch of emails to a bunch of labels, saying we’re talking to Eulogy but seeing if anyone else is interested before drawing up a deal memo. Hopeless did get back to us, I guess they felt like we weren’t ready yet, but when the record came out, they emailed me right away. Well, not right when the record came out, when he started to hear the new songs. We sent them the record and we flew out to California for a show, and we met, and had a couple of phone meetings, so it worked out.