It’s not a new beginning, but it’s definitely a new chapter for rockers Age of Days.
The four-piece originally from Fredericton, N.B. are now plying their trade in Toronto. A week ago they released new album, Radioactivity (Cordova Bay Records).
But it’s a different Age of Days – formerly Age of Daze – now.
Founding members Tim Morrison, vocals and guitar, and Matt McLaughlin, bass, moved to Toronto in the winter of 2011, parting ways with their band mates at the time.
“Unfortunately sometimes people just grow apart a little bit,” McLaughlin explained in a recent interview. “So we’ve got new members, southern Ontario guys, and we did a did tour, a short stint last summer with Buckcherry out west and did a few shows around here and so they’re good guys and the chemistry is really good and we’re excited to get out there and start playing a bunch.”
Joining Morrison and McLaughlin are Brent Alvey on guitar and Mike Langford on drums.
“People sort of still think of us as a new band in some ways, which is kind of funny,” McLaughlin said with a laugh. “We’ve been slugging away for a while.”
He and Morrison met and started writing songs a decade ago, putting out their first recording in 2005. They’ve had their ups and downs along the way – the good being successful singles and tours with bands like Buckcherry, Papa Roach and Hinder.
“We’re pretty thankful that we’ve had some success across Canada, we’ve had a single that did well at radio and we’re thankful for that right now especially because the state of the music business … rock is kind of in a rebuilding phase, I would say to be honest,” McLaughlin said.
“If we were a brand new band trying to make it out of Toronto, the odds would be pretty tough because there’s lots of good bands. It’s ironic that I think us being from the east coast originally has probably helped us in the long run because we’re able to establish ourselves in the east coast and then translate that into some success across Canada.
“The relocation thing was more of a convenience factor. The music market in Toronto is a little bit different than the style of band that we are. So I think if we were going to be a new band starting from scratch, to make it out of here, it’s a pretty intimidating thing, but we’ve got a base to build from.”
New album Radioactivity was recorded in two phases, McLaughlin explains. The band jumped at the chance to work with Juno-award winning producer Brian Howes (Hinder, Rev Theory) in Los Angeles a year ago, so they wrote and recorded three tracks with him. Back in Toronto, they co-wrote and produced most of the record with Justin Forsley.
“It was kind of done in two chunks, but in the end … I think it turned out really well. It’s got a consistent feel to it, which is what we wanted. So in spite of the way it was put together, it’s got a nice theme to it. It doesn’t sound like two separate recording sessions, they blended together really well.”
McLaughlin said Age of Days simply aimed at being a better band writing better songs on their new record.
“The thing that I’ve noticed in terms of our development as a band is mostly really in the songwriting side; I think is where we’ve made the most improvements,” he said. “Co-writing with a guy like Brian and people with a lot of experience as writers, it’s like anything, you learn a lot from those people. We’ve never varied from the style of music that we want to play. We want to play hard rock, melodic music, it’s guitar-oriented, but in the end it’s always going to be about the songs.”
First single “Bombs Away” was released last fall and “Broken” is at radio now.
“Hitting the road will be key,” McLaughlin said, noting the band will start touring in early May. “That’s the next major thing for us, to get back out and play and start winning people over sort of face-to-face.”
He said he enjoys all facets of being in a band, but hitting the stage is the best part.
“A good contingent of the dates coming up, from what I’m told, are going to be east coast stuff, so that’s very cool. We haven’t played Atlantic Canada I think since New Years’ Eve in 2010, so it’s been a couple years.”
He said the band is still connected to New Brunswick, but he doesn’t get home very often.
“The Fredericton scene was great for us to get started. We had club owners that were really, really good to us, so we appreciate everything that happened to help get us sort of get going.”
Eric Lewis is a news reporter in Moncton, New Brunswick who contributes features to MusicNerd. He first met the Age of Days (then Daze) guys circa 2005 when someone had the terrible idea for him to emcee an outdoor concert.