Nor’easter Festival 2011: River City Extension Talks About New Record

After witnessing their crowd-pleasing performance at this year’s Newport Folk Festival, we knew that River City Extension would certainly bring a similar energy to the Nor’easter Festival this past weekend. Whenever I am talking about River City Extension (which is quite often since Newport) people ask me what they are like and I casually mention that they have played SXSW, Bonnaroo, Warped Tour and Newport Folk Festival all in the past year. That usually clarifies absolutely nothing and begs the follow-up question– “Wait Newport and Warped Tour?”

With a band whose personalities are as unique as their music we were glad that we were able to catch up with band members Dan Melius (horns) and Pat O’Brien (keys) to chat about their new record. The band treated the Nor’easter crowd to “There and Back Again” which is set to be included on the new album that is (tentatively (we think…)) called Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Your Anger. Read on below for the full interview with Dan and Pat and check out their performance of “South for the Winter” from Newport Folk Festival 2011.

Maimed & Tamed: How is work coming along on the new record?

Dan Melius: We’ve got about 4 or 5 tunes that are pretty set and the rest of it we haven’t even touched yet. Joe [lead singer Joe Michelini] wrote the songs so he’s got ideas and we’ve all got ideas too. The beauty of it is that there is eight of us coming from so many different backgrounds and when you get all of that together you come up with something kinda cool because everybody is open to working together.

M&T: How has the recording process worked for you guys in the past?

DM: For the most part Joe is at the helm and he will be like– try this, and if what he thinks will work does work, then that’s awesome. Everybody will put in their own two cents of course, and if what Joe has doesn’t work then we figure something out. I write 95% of my own horn parts, but every now and then Joe will be like– I want you to follow my guitar line, and it will sound cool. It’s really a communal effort, just headed by the overall vision of Joe.

M&T: What is the name of the new record going to be?

Pat O’Brien: Don’t Let The Sun Go Down on Your Anger. It came up at a show the other night and after the show we just asked Joe– so are we going to do that, is that going to be the album name?

DM: We’ve tossed around a couple but I think that’s finally the name of this album, do you guys like it? It’s nice right?

M&T: [nods in approval accompanied by a collective “yeah”]

DM: I think it definitely reflects the overall tone of what’s going on. I mean this record is definitely a lot different than our last one. It’s definitely more low-key, a little more melancholy, but not in any sort of like sit in a corner and cry way. We’ve been travelling for a year, we miss home, we miss our friends and family, this is what we are feeling and these are the songs that are being born out of it.

M&T: You are headed to Chicago to work on the new record, do you have any sort of timeline set up for the process?

DM: We’ve got a month blocked out, but hopefully it won’t take quite that long. We’re aiming for about three weeks and then the fourth week is if we need it. We’re all going out at once, we’re staying in the studio at two apartments, which is going to be really cool because we will basically be able to work whenever. If inspiration strikes, everybody is there. Say we want a gang vocal here, there’s eight of us hanging out in an apartment let’s go and fucking do it. It’s going to be real cool like that.


Posted on by Eric in Nor'easter Festival 2011

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