Over the past decade, A Day To Remember has gradually grown to become a household name in the modern rock genre. The group’s enjoyable and catchy song structure won over crowds in the punk and pop community, and they managed to simultaneously exist in the heavy music scene with their knack for metamorphosed breakdowns and aggressive tendencies. A Day To Remember floats so perfectly between these aesthetics that it has allowed them to tour and collaborate with a multitude of different artists who define the genre. In 2016 they toured with pop-punk kings Blink-182, in 2019 they collaborated with Marshmello for the hit single “Save me, ”And just before the pandemic, the band was gearing up for a summer metal tour with Slipknot.
Having a foothold in so many genres has not only helped expand their fan base and audience, but more importantly, it has allowed ADTR to cook up a very remarkable and unique sound in the ever-growing rock world. To this end, the group’s latest album You’re welcome, perhaps the farthest they have ever come between their pop, punk and metalcore tropes. In this upcoming album, they’ve delved into all of these aspects, but it’s especially prevalent in their new pop-rock approach. The production and writing of their latest single “Everything We Need” showcases their brilliant pop-rock sensibility while recalling their ability to compose catchy melodies. Additionally, this track was also a collaboration between ADTR and contemporary pop icon Jon Bellion, who helped write the song.
Regarding the band’s new album, tomorrow March 5 marks the release of the seventh studio album from the ADTR. You’re welcome. In addition to showing their net 2021 sound, it will be a monumental release for the band as it has been almost five years since their previous studio album, Bad vibes (2016). Yesyou are welcome will also be the group’s debut under their new label Fueled By Ramen (Twenty One Pilots, Paramore, Fun.).
Speaking more about their upcoming release, the band’s genre fluidity, and what it was like to collaborate with Jon Bellion, A Day To Remember frontman Jeremy McKinnon shares his thoughts on the subject.
What was it like to prepare for the upcoming release? Has it been almost 5 years since the band’s last studio album?
Oh, it really feels like it’s been five years, actually no, it’s not fair, I’ll say four years, it’s been four years because last year just melted in my brain. But it feels really long, the longest we’ve ever had to wait for sure. It’s really amazing, as I’m going to have to see the album live on every streaming service before I really believe it’s released.
You’re welcome could be your most diverse and forward thinking album to date, given its variety of styles and rock tropes. How did you initially want to approach the writing process of “You’re Welcome?” And is the result the direction you originally planned?
So I would actually say that every A Day To Remember album was put together the same way that there is never a goal. It’s still like what we’re inspired to write right now, and over the years that has changed. And this one was a lot like walking into a room, let’s get together, write with our producer, collaborate with people, and forget what we think we’re supposed to be doing and just write down what we are influenced to work on today.
Let’s write something that we’re all passionate about today, and worry about how it all comes together and how we sum it up in a way that feels like A Day To Remember Later. Because honestly, most of our songs in our entire career have come together that way. A lot of them start off as simple acoustic songs and we turn them into what you know. Like for example the song “My Life For Hire” which is a heavier song, it was one of my acoustic songs for over a year. So it is not abnormal for us to start somewhere and end in a different place. We really went into the room and tried to write something that we were excited about and that’s what we got.
Taking into account the quality of reception of your last album, Bad vibes (2016), did he create a kind of pressure to crown the success of this album with this next release?
No I mean we felt more pressure at different times like not knowing Common courtesy (2013) to go out legally, and it was certainly the most intense time in our band’s career in terms of what it does to your psyche. Not knowing whether your career is over or not is always going to trump all of that, so in a way it’s like all kind of pressure is taken off, and at this point I’m just worried about writing something authentic and that seems really inspired to people.
I think that’s when you hit people because you’re being true to yourself and you’re going to relay things that you really feel. And you are much more likely to write something lyrical that really touches someone who is going through the same thing. I’m always chasing those moments, and honestly, I didn’t get more than on this album, so I can’t wait to see what people think.
You worked with Jon Bellion on the single “Everything We Need”. What inspired this collaboration and what was it like working with Jon on this track?
It was amazing, and this whole process is my favorite thing I’ve ever done in music, period, to date. So this was one of the collaborative music sessions I did and it felt like the last one. I had been doing it months and months already and we ended up with about 40 songs, so for me I thought the album was done, but they were like ‘hey, we had this last session, we want that. you were heading for Long Island. “And I always ask them to send me the person’s work and what they’ve done, just so I know what I’m getting into. And for some reason, I haven’t watched this one. . I saw the name but personally I was not familiar. I had such a tunnel vision in A Day To Remember for so long that I missed a lot of artists because of it, especially s’ they are outside of my world. So I get there and [Jon Bellion’s] the whole team is there, all his Glory sound preparation the writing team with whom he made this whole record is here.
They told me on entering that they were fans, and they were younger, they were younger like me or even maybe a little younger than me, so it was just like we were the same scene and that we were of the same world, very similar to equals. And that’s how they made me feel, they made me feel like a buddy that I was working with. And working with them as a writing team was one of the most inspiring groups of guys I know in a room. It was also just one of the ideas we worked on and it wasn’t even finished, we just kept going and finished another demo the next day. But honestly, some of the memories from that writing session are going to stay with me for the rest of my life.
These guys made me feel like an equal, and I was on the flight home and I was like “dude these guys were the sickest, I loved these sessions and I have never been so inspired , I’m going to see Jon Bellion’s music. ” And I sat down and played “Blu”. “Blu” was like the most popular song on his Spotify at the time and I listened to it and it was my new favorite song. And I had a conversation with him after the first session, so after I wrote the verses and the bridge to “All we need”. We just relaxed after the session for about an hour talking about life and getting to know each other, and he asked me how I got here and how I got to this seat with him.
And I told him my story, but since I didn’t know Jon, I was like “how did Jon Bellion get here?” And he tells me he wrote all these songs and they were really good, and how he sold two nights at Jones Beach. And we had just played at Jone Beach with Blink-182 and it was sold out, so I knew exactly what Jones Beach is and it’s huge. Immediately my head turned like “fuck Jon, I had no idea, you just talk to me like a normal human being”, and it was so cool.
The shift from heavy songs to pop songs centered on this album has to be one of the most exciting elements. Given how much you float between so many rock and pop genres, where do you see ADTR in terms of the genre? Or has the genre never really crossed the minds of the band?
We never really liked to consider the genre, because it was the birth of our group. We lived in this town where the only guy doing shows was in this hardcore band, so all the bands that came into town were hardcore bands, and hardcore bands like Comeback Kid and all the bands from Facedown Records. . That’s about all that was going on, that and the hardcore bands that toured with them. And I loved it, I loved music like that, I loved the feeling and the vibe of a hardcore show and I loved this music.
And as music fans we also loved Blink-182 and all those 90s punk bands so when the time came for us to be a band we had to play those heavy parts in our songs or we wouldn’t fit in. not even in a bill. We wanted to have those moments like these hardcore shows, but we also wanted to have memorable, catchy, pop-structured songs like those pop songs that we loved. So this scene gave birth to the combination of music that worked for us. And that was just the first thing we did, we’ve always been in this mindset of combining things we love in a fluid way with other things we love and in a way that was not really done. And that’s not really what we’re trying to do, but ultimately it is. So we’re trying to take these modern influences and channel them through the same formula, A Day To Remember and “You’re welcome”, that’s A Day To Remember in 2021.