Go Radio is currently on tour with Paradise Fears and Stages & Stereos in support of their September release, Close The Distance. The album marks the band’s second LP in less than two years and the tracks, “Go To Hell” and “Collide,” have already been recognized as two of the group’s biggest songs to date. Jason Lancaster (lead vox, guitar, piano) recently talked with Alternative Addiction about recording the new album and the band’s creative process in the studio.
Though two albums in less than two years may seem a bit overambitious to some, there’s no denying Lancaster and company pulled it off. Using Lucky Street as a bit of a learning experience, the band was ready to make their best album yet before heading into the studio to record the new LP.“For us, production value was something that we wanted to touch on and really address because we felt like there were a lot of ideas that were hidden behind the recording (on Lucky Street). And not to say that was bad because it wasn’t, but it was just a different style than what we were used to. So when we came into this, we wanted to be sure that there wasn’t anything taking away from the song itself and what we wanted to get across. I think we brought that in and then tried to bring in some of the elements from Lucky Street that we were most proud of like the honesty and passion behind it, and the ability to talk about everything like life and death; you know, not just stick to the classic boy meets girl soundtrack.”
Known since his Mayday Parade days for his distinct vocals and ability to convey raw emotion in his music, Lancaster impresses again on Close The Distance. When asked about his approach to laying down vocals in the studio; Lancaster had this to say - “when I start doing vocals I try to go back to what the song is about and also try to capture the emotions I’ve accumulated overall from life – so if it’s a happy song then I’ll think about happy times or if it’s a sad song then I’ll think about sad times. So I really just try to get into character for that…the good thing is no matter how new or old a song is the emotion is still a very real thing. You don’t have to go back and put yourself in the exact time and the exact place you were in when you wrote the song; you can recall the emotions and emotion is something you can’t fake anyway. It does become something very real for you and very real for the listener, and I’m proud to say we don’t cheat anything – like if something sounds sad it’s because we were sad when we sang it.”
Though perfection is something that almost all artists seek when writing an album, the reality is this is nearly an impossible goal regardless of what profession you find yourself in. Well aware of this, Lancaster actually talked about how failing to be perfect can actually have its benefits; “we are always striving to make something perfect, but with that being said, I think we’re pretty good at being in the middle with it – we want it to be perfect, but we want it to be real as well. I don’t want to leave the studio with a product we can’t reproduce live…I think it’s important we use some of the humanism in recordings. There are a lot of people that just suck it out and make a computer record, and that’s not something we try to do. We like some flaws because they show emotion; they show an actual human being on the other side of the record and I love that.”
Always writing, Go Radio already had a substantial amount of recorded material when they entered the studio. Essentially, the band utilizes studio time to improve upon previously recorded demos and hone the details and intricacies of each song before tracking a final version. “I have books and things that I write down in, and I also have cell phone recordings. But for the most part, when we come into the studio, we come with a few songs we all know we want to be on the record; the idea is done and it’s becoming something bigger at that point. So nine times out of ten, everything we go in there with is already pre-recorded; it’s something that we’ve sat down and gone through ourselves but just put together a really bad initial version of (laughs). But when it comes to writing, I love having hand written things. I always feel like if you type it out then it takes some of the feeling out of it. I don’t know why I feel that way but I always have a more difficult time writing on a computer than I do with a pad and pen.”
On December 4th, Go Radio will conclude their tour in Nashville, TN. The band is then scheduled to perform a short stint of shows on the East Coast throughout the rest of December.