AR: Personally, I would have to say that my earliest influences were bands like The Cure and The Smiths, and other bands of that sort. When I first started playing guitar, I was obsessed with effects. Even now, my delay and reverb pedals are on constantly.
OS: The Gaslight Anthem has often been compared to Springsteen and he even jumped onstage with you guys a couple of times. What has the band taken away from working with The Boss?
AR: To be honest, I wouldn’t really consider it “working” with “the Boss.” Not to say that playing with Springsteen wasn’t one of the most amazing experiences of our lives; but when your onstage even when time slows down, it’s still only 3:09 of your life. I don’t know about you, but it is a bit hard to learn anything in 3:09…
OS: Having been to a bunch of GLA shows, it seems that the band always manages to create a small-town environment. How do you pull this off now that you’re headlining large venues?
AR: I think the motive’s still there. I don’t think that even though the places have gotten better that the emotion is any different. We still treat the crowds the same.
OS: When you’re touring through all these amazing cities, where do you find yourselves after the shows?
AR: In all reality, after the show we’re usually traveling to the next one. We’re not really a “party group”. We leave all of that to “Donutz”. Unfortunately, I can’t disclose his real name.
OS: The ’59 Sound was received with a lot of critical acclaim. Did this create pressure for you guys when writing/recording American Slang to create an equally successful follow-up?
AR: At first, but after a while we decided it was best if we made this record for us. The same way we always did. After that, things started to run a bit smoother.
OS: The band has mentioned that American Slang deals with personal things. Is there any one song that speaks best to this concept?
AR: It’s really the whole album. There isn’t a part that I think is more than any other….
OS: It seems that the band’s sound has really evolved and finally solidified with this latest studio release. Is this where you think you’ll stay moving forward for future releases?
AR: We’ll always keep changing. There are very few bands who can write the same record twice. It really helps a band, I think, to keep adapting.
GLA is currently in the thick of the fall tour.
10/21 -Hammersmith Apollo, London, UK
10/22 -Southampton Guildhall, Southampton, UK
10/23 -O2 Academy, Bristol, UK
10/24 -Wolverhampton Civic Hall, Wolverhampton, UK
10/26 -E-Werk, Cologne, Germany
10/27 -Grosse Freiheit 36, Hamburg, Germany
10/28– KB, Malmo, Sweden
10/29 -Brewhouse, Goteborg, Sweden
10/31-Debaser Slussen, Stockholm, Sweden
11/2 -Tavastia, Helsinki, Finland