My Interview with Handguns

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My Interview with Handguns

Post by thenoid on Thu Jun 03 2010, 19:42

I recently had the chance to talk with Jake Langley of Handguns and he suggested that we do an interview. I've never done anything like that but I agreed. A few days later I got around and wrote up a few questions and sent them to him to answer.

First off, who's in the band and what does everyone do?

Taylor Eby - Vocals
Jake Langley - Guitar
Nate Bobb - Bass
Marco Florey - Drums

I saw you guys play about a year ago and you had a different line-up. How did this current setup come around?

Jake: Handguns as a band has been through many line-up changes to say the least. We started in '08 and since then there are 6 ex-members and 9 people who have filled in for countless shows. I have always had the mindset that I would rather be out playing a show with someone who either just joined the band last week or someone who literally learned the songs on the van ride to the show. It sounds dumb and it made for a lot of sloppy sets early on in the band but playing a show no matter what always made sense to me. So when Brandon, the dude who sings on "MMIX", decided to take an internship with the state senate a month before we were supposed to leave on the full US tour we did from January - March, I needed to find someone to sing. At that very same time All We Are was going through some line-up changes. We were actually on a weekend tour with All We Are and With The Punches when Brandon told me about the internship (while we were playing shows with a fill-in singer, I would like to add) on the very same weekend All We Are was playing with a fill-in guitarist, and was also having a few other issues with members. I was sitting outside the venue bumming out hard because I wasn't sure what the hell I was going to do. I love this band and music more than anything in the entire world. While I was sitting there Dustin Wallace of With The Punches who is a long time personal friend of mine walked over to me and asked me what was going on so I filled him in on what was up. He then said what should have been in my head the whole time: "so you guys have member issues and so does All We Are, why don't you just be the same band?". So I literally got up walked over to Taylor and CJ and made the offer. They were both down. CJ later couldn't tour as much as we wanted to so we had to find a bassist in a hurry. So I started going through my phone asking people who I knew played bass, played guitar, owned a bass, knew what a bass was, had hands, or could say the word "bass". That is how I found Nate. I had booked his band a few times but didn't really know him. I called him and made the offer to be in Handguns and tour until we are broke or dead and he said "uhhhh sure". So yeah that is the story of how we are what we are right now. Getting new members and pressing on has always made sense to me. I won't ever give up.

How did your band get its name?

Jake: I wanted a name that was one word short and easy to remember. And Handguns wasn't taken.

You recently were added last minute to a short tour with I Call Fives and With The Punches, how was that?

Jake: It went great! I don't think I could put into words how great the dudes in those two bands are. It's real hard to find real people these days especially in the music world. But both of those bands have always had our back through all the member changes and all the other stuff we went through as a band.

You guys just released a new EP called "Anywhere But Home". What does this record mean to you?

Jake: It's just about how none of us want to be at home living a daily routine we have found our peace and our comfort in the back of a smelly van running on fumes and spare change. I can't express express enough how happy we are to do what we do. I think I speak for the band when I say that if we couldn't do this we would end up killing ourselves or committing serious crimes.

I noticed "Two Weeks" made a re-appearance from the 2009 EP, why not any of the other songs?

Jake: We had planned on doing all new material when Taylor joined the band because no one, especially the singer, wants to do songs someone else wrote, but when we went on the full US tour we realized that kids from 3000 miles away knew the words and wanted to choke Taylor for the mic. So I called Brandon and since he is still a close friend of mine and the band he gave us the go so we re-did the song.

I believe you guys recorded the EP with Nik from Man Overboard, how was that experience?

Jake: It was great. Nik has such a good ear for music and harmonies and just small things that made our songs really shine on the record. In his words, "I take songs you know and I make them songs I know". He fucxed hard and it was the first time I had ever recorded anything that I was actually proud of and excited for people to hear. Every one else we recorded with just pressed record and let us do our own thing. Nik made us better musicians, better people, a better band, and really high haha.

On your Myspace you've written in sounds like "The Movielifetime", are they some of your biggest influences?

Jake: What other bands do you try to draw influence from? Saves The Day, blink-182, Green Day, New Found Glory, honestly I could go on and on. Just Pop Punk and Hardcore bands.

To support this new record you guys will be following the Warped Tour, who's idea was that?

Jake: Mine. It's just a really great way to reach a bunch of people and make some money. It's going to be hard work but that has never been something that we have been afraid of. I realized early on in life that anything worth having is worth busting your back for. If someone dropped a record contract and giant tour bus in front of us I don't think we appreciate it as much as if we earned it every step of the say. You gotta suffer a little bit to get what means the most to you.

What are your plans once the Warped Tour is over?

Jake: We are going to come home for like a month? Maybe? We plan on recording with Nik again a few songs for a 7" that we are planning on putting out sometime around Christmas. After we record we are going on on another 1 - 2 month long tour. You can pretty much plan than if Handguns is on tour we are either recording, booking a tour, or getting our van fixed.

If you could plan your next tour with any bands who would you go with?

Jake: New Found Glory, Paramore, MxPx, With The Punches, Man Overboard, and Ke$ha.

What do you guys listen to most in the van?

Jake: The Upsides. A lot. Other than that Paramore. I do 98% of the driving so I just put my Ppod on shuffle a lot, too.

You guys were thinking about doing a split 7" with the New York Pop Punk band With The Punches, is this still a possibility?

Jake: Yeah, With The Punches are long time friends of the band and personal friends of mine I would love for this to happen. I know they are writing a full-length right now which I am sure will blow everyone away and make every band look really bad, but we had talked about doing a split with them. I can't say for sure but everyone is hoping.

I've heard a lot of bands similar to you guys say Handguns is one of the hardest working bands out there, what's your reaction to that?

Jake: I would just have to say "thank you". Of course I love hearing anyone say anything nice about the band. We are just trying to do this the only way we know how. None of us are heart throbs so we don't get the automatic girls liking us, we are not rich and we don't have rich parents footing the bill or buying us onto any tours, and although we have some of the best friends ever I would by know means say we are friends with the "right people". Some times I wish we were it make things a lot easier but I was raised very blue color and my Father always told me that I would have to work for everything in life and that is really how I live my entire life and it's definitely how Handguns as a band works. We just know that the only way to get anywhere in life or music is to break your back. I would like to add though that none of this has ever felt like work to me.

What are the plans for 2011? (besides "lording the fuck out").

Jake: We plan on being out on the road as much as possible we are going to come home to get the van fixed and to book more tours. It's the only thing that makes sense to us. We want to chase this dream as hard as humanly possible. If that means eating our of trash cans then so be it.

Check out the band:

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Re: My Interview with Handguns

Post by jasonTDA on Fri Aug 27 2010, 00:10

I love this interview and band so much!

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