Interview with Down With Webster
Bands every day are talking about being “oversaturated” in the US touring wise! The Summer Set, a five time interview, is taking almost a year away from touring in their own country in 2012 because of it after consistently doing back to back tours but there are the handful of bands from other countries who are only dreaming of doing that. While they may have a huge following where they’re from, for them to come overseas is an insane challenge!
In this last month I talked to several british bands and one Canadian band called Down With Webster who despite touring with huge names like Cute Is What We Aim For and 3OH!3 have never had the chance to headline the states until this month to rooms alike to the ones they were playing four years ago in Canada. Despite the situation, the band couldn’t be happier to be playing in the states considering it’s a chance to really connect with their fans again on a more intimate level and test drive their material from their latest record that dropped in October. Read on for my exclusive with Pat and Cam from the band and be sure to catch them constantly on your radar here in the states!
Artist: Down With Webster
Title: Time To Win: Volume II
Release date: 11/8/11
Down With Webster
Buy at: Amazon
Let’s start with your name and what you do!
Pat:I’m Pat and I play guitar.
Cam: I’m Cam and I rap.
Perfect! So a little soft one, obviously you guys tour a bunch, being in the middle of the Wintour. What are three things you must have on tour to survive?
Cam: Must haves on the road?
Pat: My Canada Goose jacket.
Cam: That’s pretty good!
Pat: To keep me warm.
Cam: I must have Red Bull. I drink it constantly. What else do I have to have? Nintendo 64 is a must. Went through tour last year with out it and it sucked (all laugh) so I brought it out on this one. Labtop, can’t go anywhere with out my labtop.
Pat: Starbucks Instant Coffee packets for me. That’s my Red Bull!
Cam: So basically, caffeine, video games, the internet.
Pat: And warmth!
Cam: Yeah, warmth is good!
Not like this?
Cam: No, this is fine.
Pat: This is actually really decent.
Cam: Well, we’ve been touring Canada. It’s a different kind of cold!
Pat: We’re going to Winnipeg on this tour that will be very cold.
That’s going to be a little rough for sure.
Cam: Yeah but it’s nice down here! I like it! I like the winter here. It’s more bearable.
Well then how is it? We actually interviewed you guys during the Cute Is What We Aim For tour which is such a long time ago.
Cam: Like almost two years? Wow.
Yeah it’s been a decent amount of time.
Cam: Yeah, it’s been a while!
So you guys don’t tour that much in the US just yet so how are these shows going?
Cam: Basically these shows are going better then I thought they would go considering the fact that we’ve never been down to the US on our own. We did that one thing with Cute as you said then we got to do a tour with 3OH!3 where we kind of did what they called their B markets. I guess just places that aren’t major cities so we got to do those two tours but this is the first time we’ve ever been down here on our own and so far it’s been awesome! People at every show that know the words. Kids are into it so our kind of plan in the near future is to be down here more often because we have to kind of wait for some one to want to take us on tour instead of doing it ourself. I think we’re more in the mindset now of doing what we did in Canada which was build it up by just playing and playing over and over and over again because I think we’re a band that has always relied on the fact that if we manage to get ten people to come to our show, next time it will be twenty. We’ve kind of worked like that.
Pat: And also it’s cool to gauge, when we play these smaller shows, where it’s really just us, to look out and see a group of strangers that you’ve never met before. Heard of your band virally or whatever who know the songs and know the people in the band. It’s crazy and it definitely shows us that we’re getting somewhere. You could always just open for a big band. Hop up on stage and they’re pumped to see their favorite band and they clap for you too. It’s really good to be able to gauge who’s coming out, why they’re coming.
Cam: It’s a lot more relaxed. I don’t feel a lot of pressure. Just hang at the show, chill, just talk to them. It’s more sane then having to play in like Toronto, Canada. So I enjoy it kind of because it’s how it used to be for us when we played shows in Canada.
Then you guys put out ‘Time To Win: Volume 2’ since we last spoke.
Cam: Back in November, actually!
Yeah so how is that going over so far?
Cam: It’s been going over very well. It’s been great! We’re a few singles deep. Have a few videos and all those we’re all super proud of. One premiered today actually on Billboard.com. It went up earlier today, it was awesome! Yeah we’re just pumped to be playing new music. I feel like it’s definitely better then our last album. It’s an improvement and as long as we keep improving. I also just don’t like playing the same songs (all laugh). I mean we have so many songs that we were just sick of playing them over and over again so I’m glad we have this new thing and get to play a lot of the new stuff.
Then maybe if you were to compare this record to the last one, what would you say is the most familiar sounding song for past Down With Webster fans and maybe the most unfamiliar, like something new?
Cam: Well, there’s a couple songs that we play from the old album. We still play ‘Woah, Is Me’, occasionally we’ll still play ‘Your Man’. Just the songs that did really well on the last one and then as far as new stuff, we do pretty much try and play almost the entire new record. With the exception of a couple songs.
So it’s mostly the new record?
Cam: It’s mostly new and we throw in a couple of old favorites.
Then how would you say the US crowds compare, obviously with a different level of success in Canada. It’s probably much more intimate.
Cam: Totally! Well, first of all, like you said, it’s smaller. There’s less people here, less people know of us and we’re not as much of a big deal. We literally have never done an actual headliner or any sort of show so it’s starting from point zero. It’s a different thing but in terms of who the audience is and the way they react, I got to say it’s identical to Canada.
Pat: It’s like going back in time to like three or four years ago. Doing these smaller shows in small clubs. But people are freaking out! They’re really into it! Last night in New York was crazy.
Cam: If anything, when we go back to the old material, I feel like the kids here are actually going more crazy at our shows then they were four years ago in Canada.
Pat: Songs are better. We’re better live and it sounds better to us!
Then maybe as a band, you have toured the US before, but recently I did Marianas Trench where it was their first real US tour where they were opening for Simple Plan. And maybe Stereos, they’ve toured like once or twice here. Maybe what advice would you give to bands who have never done it before?
Pat: Just do it!
Cam: Just do it. Don’t wait to get on all the huge bills because at the end of the day, it might not be your fan base. It’s always a good experience to open for that kind of a band and learn from them but if you can’t get it, don’t sit around twiddling your thumbs. Get in a van and do it!
Then a little soft one for you guys! What was the first CD or cassette you ever bought as a kid as well as concert?
Pat: My first concert was Aerosmith.
Cam: My first concert was NOFX. I was like twelve.
Pat: My first actual compact disc was ‘Twelve Inches of Snow’. Can’t believe I’m saying that. I don’t know if I bought it or some one bought it for me.
You bought it,it’s okay!
Pat: I played Frisbee with it.
Cam: I think the first one I ever bought myself might have been The Offspring.
Pat: Was it a tape though?
Pat: Okay that was my first tape. My first CD is equally embarrassing.
Cam: I bought Wu Tang’s ‘36 Chambers’ on cassette tape.
Pat: With my own money, the first tape I actually bought was Soundgarden but my mom bought me corny crap before that. Like ‘Twelve Inches of Snow’. That was a birthday gift some one gave to me. It was like my first CD. I don’t even think I had a CD player.
Then maybe what’s coming up after this tour? I know you just started the US portion of it because I know you’ve been in Canada doing the tour as well.
Cam: Yeah it’s all part of the same tour. Now we’re just going up and down and up and down.
Pat: It gets blurry sometimes but I think we’re ending up at South By Southwest so we’re going to do that and in terms of immediate plans after that, we’re just planning on touring more. Like we literally don’t want to stop! We’re trying to hit up some festivals.
Cam: Trying to keep touring down here. I just did a circular motion if you can’t hear it.
Pat: If you can’t hear it on a digital recorder.
Cam: My hand gestures.
"Time To Win: Volume II" by Down With Webster - release date: 11/8/11..