Plain White T's are currently gearing up for the release of their new album “Wonders Of The Younger”, due out this October. Lauren Felton caught up with frontman Tom Higgenson, guitarist Tim Lopez and rhythm guitarist Dave Tirio to find out their views on the album.
How are you?
All: Good thanks! How're you?
Great, thankyou. What are you doing today?
Tim: Today we are eating peanuts, drinking Diet Coke and doing interviews.
Tom: I've got a feeling this is going to be the best one so far!
Is it true that your new album was originally going to be an EP?
Tim: No! Someone asked me that yesterday. It was actually meant to be even longer.
The new single sounds very fresh. Would you guys say it's a departure from, or an evolution of, your sound?
Tim: A departure.
Tom: No, an evolution! The only departure is Tim singing. It's a departed evolution. Overall, it's an evolution of the band, if not the sound. I feel like we stepped up every aspect of our band. We spent a lot of time on this album, more than we have on any of the others. We put a lot of heart, a lot of passion and a lot of soul into it, and we didn't stop til we thought it was good enough.
How did you decide that Tim would take lead vocals on this track?
Tom: He wrote it and brought it to the band and we loved it. We tried it a few ways, with me singing it, or me singing just a verse, or a duet-type thing but he sounded more sincere. He wrote it about a real girl that he knew.
You write a lot of songs about girls!
Tom: Yeah. Girls are cool!
Tim: They suck, too.
Where did the title 'Wonder From the Younger' come from?
Tom: I went to a Cirque du Soleil show in Vegas. You guys have that there, tight?
Yes – or we've seen them go and take a lot of mushrooms at a show in 'Knocked Up'…
Tom: Haha, I felt like I had taken the mushrooms! There were pirates, clowns, a carousel, horses…I was so blown away and I just left with this title in my head. No songs, just the title.
So it's more to do with fantasy than youth?
Tom: It's more of a nostalgic album…it's about trying to recconnect with feelings of innocence and adventure. The older you get, the more responsibilities, we just wanted to throw away those responsibilities.
Some people know you as the 'Hey There, Delilah' band. Do you ever get tired of being that band?
Tom: At least we're that!
True. Even my parents know who you are because of that song!
Tim: You can't be too mad at that.
Tom: That's great. If it means more success and more songs, that's great.
You were nominated for a Grammy for that song. Is that your greatest achievement as a band so far?
Tom: That was a pretty big deal. It's something we always dreamed about.
Tim: Amy Winehouse beat us!
So Amy Winehouse was there. Anyone else you saw who left you starstruck?
Tom: We got to meet Ringo Starr and Yoko Ono!
Is that the most starstruck you've ever been?
Tom: It was pretty big…though I once met Rhianna.
Was she hot in the flesh?
Tom: Aw, hell yeah. I met her in London at a FallOutBoy show and she was unbelievably nice, and normal.
You were involved in the Almost Alice project. Tell me about that?
Tom:That song, Welcome to Mystery, I was writing it in the concept of the 'Wonder of the Younger' album, literally two days before the label came to us and said, “do you guys have any songs we could use?” We're huge Tim Burton fans so being attached to anything he does was awesome.
Did you get to meet the man himself?
Tom: No but we did party with Johnny Depp…that's a lie.
Tim: We should just lie through all our interviews so people will believe all this cool stuff about us!
Well, there was a rumour you were releasing an EP. We'll get to work spreading the Johnny Depp rumour…
Ready for two quickfire questions?
Clear your mind. Say the first thing that you think of. Who's your biggest influence?
Tom: The Beatles
Tim: The Heartbreakers
Tom: That's Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers by the way
Best band you've shared a stage with?
Tim: We did play a show with REM…
Tom: We did a tour with Panic! at the Disco. They're one of my favourite bands – don't laugh at me, I'm serious!
We wouldn't laugh at that! Have a great day.