Vertical Horizon and Matt Scannell have come to the conclusion that the fan-funded album is the best way to make new music. Not only because itís a direct connection to the die-hard fans that want the music the most, but because itís a very freeing way to create for a band that hasnít had that much freedom in that area in the past. Talking with Matt about the bandís new album, Echoes From The Underground, and what working with PledgeMusic to fund the record did for the new album, he said he was ecstatic with the process.
ďMy mind was completely pure during the creation of this record,Ē said Scannell. ďI didnít have any other considerations going through my mind. I wasnít trying to write songs to be singles, or writing any type of sound. The only action I was concerned with was following the muse and following inspiration. Thatís because of the blessing of our fans. They gave us the confidence and the ability to create some art.
ďI was able to focus on that, arguably for the first time. In the past, there was always a secondary goal with the creation of music for this band. Whether it was to get a record deal, keep a record deal, or get another record deal. With this record, that wasnít ever considered from the first moment - Itís pure. That being said, I donít think everybody will like it. I think there will be some songs where people will think we pushed a little too hard. Thereís a song called ĎLovestruck,í thatís probably more pop than anything Iíve ever done and more synth-driven than anything Iíve ever done. But I love that music and that day when I was working on that song, thatís where I was going,Ē added Scannell.
Further talking about PledgeMusic and how happy he was with how the band made Echoes From The Underground, Matt said that that heíd do it again. But thereís a different set of questions that needs to be raised. Vertical Horizon has a song catalogue thatís been celebrated for over a decade. When they go out on tour, most people go out to see them to see them play their old hits. So why is it important to keep making new music? Scannell said itís for a variety of reasons.
ďI think what you have to do is make new music to stay vital and to keep those creative juices flowing,Ē answered Scannell. ďThe thing that inspired me to start doing this when I was 13 years old, I want to hold on to that. I want to maintain a strong connection with that kid. Part of the whole cycle of being in a band is creating new music, itís not just playing old songs. I love the old songs. But if you have the good fortune to perform and sing your own catalog... itís great, but you definitely need to be reaching. Weíre going to make more records and the next one isnít going to be in three years, Iíve already started working on it. You make new music to maintain the passion, you want the music to be alive. With the same old songs year after year, then the energy tends to slow down. Look at Rush, they come out with new albums every couple of years and theyíve been around for forty years. Thatís what I aspire to. Weíre going to keep doing it. I love new music and I love the process.Ē
Scannell said he plans to make the next Vertical Horizon album the same way that they made this one, through PledgeMusic. Itís notable that their campaign for Echoes From The Underground is still ongoing with some of the items available including a download of the album, a CD, VIP passes, autographed guitars, and a Skype interview session. You can check out the campaign now at PledgeMusic.com/VerticalHorizon.