American band Motion City Soundtrack is generally regarded as leaders in the pop-punk genre and are often mentioned in the same breath as bands like Blink 182. The group has a new record out now, Go, released last month on the label of their longtime home of Epitaph Records.
The MusicNerd Chronicles recently chatted with Motion City Soundtrack bassist Matt Taylor about the making of their new album as well as his group’s return to Epitaph Records.
Your last record My Dinosaur Life (2010) was released by Columbia/Sony however Go marks a return to the Epitaph Records stable where you had spent your career until My Dinosaur Life. What was your experience at Columbia like?
Taylor: I think we have chalked it up to a learning experience. Some people say it’s weird going from an indie label to a major label but in a lot of ways, it was kind of seamless to us. The people at Columbia gave us a lot of freedom, pitched a lot of great ideas to us and trusted us to make our own decisions. Not long into the promotional cycle for My Dinosaur Life though, the band was dropped from the label.
Was that a bitter pill to swallow?
Taylor: I would have liked to see the record be given a fair shot but going into the deal with Columbia, I think we all knew that it was a risky game to be playing.
Were you concerned at all about ‘fallout’ from making the label jump from Epitaph to Columbia? The Offspring certainly took a lot of flack when they made that very same jump in the 1990’s.
Taylor: I think that no matter what, people are going to find negative stuff to say about your band. We resigned to the fact long ago that you can’t please everyone so keeping the bigger picture in mind is really what matters. We just keep making music and don’t really concern ourselves with what others think. Things are very different in the music business now then they were when the Offspring signed to Columbia. To some extent, I think bands have to do what feels right for them.
So how did those experiences play into the making of Go?
Taylor: With Go, we found ourselves with no record label but we simply pushed that out of our minds when it came to recording. We just carried on as if nothing was different but at the same token, it was very freeing. We had no agenda. No one was looking over our shoulders. We chose to do what we do and Go is the end result of that.