Being a Bayside fan for years now, it was such a privilege to catch up with my pal and Bayside bassist, Nick Ghanbarian. He is living in exciting times right now with a new record and a cross country tour! He also on an epic team called Born & Bred! Be sure to throw him some high fives for me when you catch one of their shows near you this summer! I am also one of the lucky ones to get a sneak peak of their new record, VACANCY! This post is double the fun! First up is the album review followed by an interview with Ghanbarian! Enjoy!
(***Above photo credit: Audrey Lew***)
Check out their newest video for Pretty Vacant first!
Bayside’s seventh album, VACANCY will be released August 19th and it’s TOTALLY worth the wait. Everything you love about BAYSIDE is all there in strength with an added “southern vibe” in the song NO FAIR. It feels like being in a Nashville dive bar surrounded by whiskey drinking patrons all watching the song played live with a stand-up bass. Being a southern born and raised gal, I absolutely love this little twist on this record. Singer, Anthony Raneri, writes of love, heartbreak and confusion. Although, life throws hard times our way, Raneri turns life’s hard moments into amazing songs that are beautifully written. Henry Miller said “There are only three things to be done with a woman. You can love her, suffer for her, or turn her into literature.” I truly believe that VACANCY is about this very thing. He mentions being on a southern battlefield while fighting a battle of a lifetime. Yet “A good soldier marches on.” I don’t want to give away too much of the lyrical greatness of this record. Although what seems as some harsh words about his current marriage being met with disaster, there are some hints of hope and being strong in the midst of trial in the songs, Mary and It’s Not As Depressing As It Sounds. This album stayed 100% true to themselves. They do what they do best….just plain being BAYSIDE!
The band kicks off their North American tour on June 5th in Cincinnati, Ohio and takes a stroll across the country blessing our ears till September 18th ending in Nashville, TN. (***click photo above for complete list of tour dates***) Bayside never disappoints the ears or eyes. Hands down one of the best bands to see live. I am very excited to see what songs on VACANCY they choose to play live this tour, because I am sure you can tell…I LOVE this record so much. You will too. I guarantee it. You have the Christie Gee promise.
Now on to my interview with bassist, Nick Ghanbarian!
Congrats on Bayside’s SEVENTH album! It is fantastic! Bayside has truly stayed true to their sound! How would you compare Vacancy to the former albums?
We are very comfortable with how we sound, I think we say that with every album that we release. What we try to do with every record is push ourselves a little further to expand on our sound while staying true to who we are. I believe that our career has been a journey that is constantly moving forward and at this point we have our fans to thank for sticking with us for so long. Our goal with each album and tour is to make those fans happy and thank them for sticking around and believing in us for so long. If we pick up some new fans along the way, even better. To compare it to other albums that we have written is easy because i think its a natural progression that we started back on the Killing Time record. To me that is where we really found our current sound.
You guys had Tim O’heir, who besides producing countless albums also was TONY nominated for Hedgwik And The Angry Inch. How was is working with him on this record?
We had never worked with Tim before and we really put a lot of trust in him during the few weeks we spent together in the studio. The entire process was a little uncomfortable for us, early on we had a bunch of technical difficulties and wound up moving to a different studio a few weeks into the recording. Between those issues and also having Tim learn how we work and vice versa, it was an arduous process. On the last day of tracking, we still really had no idea how the album sounded and we were all really anxious and worried about the final product. The following weeks as song mixes came back, all the songs came together and we all could relax and be happy with the album.
On the subject of recording.This record came at time when the band all lived scattered across the country, with Anthony and Jack in Nashville, Chris in southern California and you in New York. This it somewhat of a normal situation with many bands these days. What was the recording process like for this record for you?
It’s been a lot of trial and error! We got together early in the fall and put together about half the record and demoed the songs Anthony had prepared up until that point. But from then on we didnt see each other in a songwriting capacity until we were in the studio. We wrote the 2nd batch of songs in the studio based off of songs we passed around via email. It led to some new anxieties that we had never encountered in the studio, which i think led to some interesting new sounds for us.
Do you have a favorite song that you are looking forward to playing live on stage?
There are a few favorites, I’m excited to play Two Letters and Maybe Tennessee. I think long time Bayside fans are going to really like where we pushed ourselves on those songs
On August 11th Bayside kicks off a tour with Menzingers and Sorority Noise. Do you have favorite cities and or venus that you are looking forward to play at again?
I always love getting out to the west coast, I think in a past life I must have lived out there. I always feel clarity and am at ease when im out there. Las Vegas is always my favorite stop of a tour, I cant wait to get back there. I’d say my favorite venue is the Electric Factory in Philadelphia. Its a massive room and has a super great rock n roll vibe.
Many know that you are co-owners of a brand called Born & Bred. I have loved watching B&B grow into what it is today, and looking forward to what it will be! What would you like the readers to know about Born & Bred and what is next for the brand?
(Above photo borrowed from Nick’s Instagram account)
B&B has been a lot of fun to work on in the past few years. The challenge has been trying to fuse everything that we find interesting into one brand. Like you mentioned I run the company with 2 other people. Between the 3 of us we try to fit our love of music, outdoors, dogs, and art into one brand and then figure out what that looks like aesthetically. We will be releasing our Summer ’16 in the upcoming weeks. We are also putting together some band collaborations that should launch late summer / early fall. Thanks for the questions Christie!
Thank YOU, Nick for taking time to do this interview with me! Have the most fun on this tour! Looking forward to seeing ya’ll in Los Angeles!
Thanks to the readers as well! Be sure to follow me on Instagram for more fun interviews to come!