Interview by Natalie K.
October 21, 2008
Estrella: Can you please state your name and what you do in the band?
Shaun: I’m Shaun and I play the bass guitar in Straylight Run.
John: I am John, I sing, play the piano and guitar.
Estrella: How has the tour with Anberlin going so far?
John: It has been going really good so far.
Shaun: Good crowds, good folks on the tour.
Estrella: Any stand out shows so far?
John: The one we played the other day.
Shaun: Salt Lake City was also really, really, good, and tonight (Chicago) should be rad as well.
Estrella: What are the biggest changes to your live performance since Michelle is no longer in the band?
Shaun: One less person on the stage (laughs). Well we get John to do a lot more work.
John: I have to run around a lot more doing stuff. I end up playing the piano and the guitar on both on the same song a lot of times.
Estrella: How does that work?
John: We made a little set up where I’ve got a little piano that’s out to the main piano through a mini cable. I’m getting the sounds from that piano with this tiny synthesizer that I can put on a stand right next to me while I play guitar. It makes it pretty easy; the only really complicated thing is setting it up every night. Once it is set up it is really easy to do.
Estrella: Did you figure out how to do it well before tour?
John: We took two weeks to get our new live show together. We decided to take a different approach to things rather than try to re-create what we did when Michelle was in the band, just try to revamp everything.
Shaun: Take a left turn and go down that road kind of thing.
Estrella: Have you heard any feedback from fans so far?
Shaun: They hate it (everyone laughs). They come up to us and say, “This sucks, go home!” but everything we hear has been pretty positive, we don’t look too much into it. We see stuff on our myspace from time to time and it has been good enough.
Estrella: What was the thought process behind your newest EP Un Mas Dos?
Shaun: To have some good songs and put it out there for people.
Estrella: Did you have more songs than just 3 that would want on there?
John: We made the decision to do 3 before we did it. We had a whole bunch of songs that we could have worked on and we just choose those 3. We kind of did the same thing with the EP that we’ve been wanting to do with the live show which is take a different approach. Go in a little bit of a different direction and concentrate more on the energy and intensity of the songs, and really make that our focus.
Estrella: Do you have any plans for after this tour?
John: We are going to Australia in February.
Shaun: For the Soundwave Festival with Nine Inch Nails and a whole bunch of other bands. I think Bayside is going to be there, which are old friends of ours and a bunch of others I am completely blanking on.
John: Minus the Bear.
Shaun: Oh are they?
John: Yeah, you didn’t know that?
Shaun: No, no, now I am very excited. I haven’t seen those guys in a while and they are a lot of fun.
Estrella: Have you guys played that festival before?
Shaun: No, we have not so this will be our first. Our second time in Australia though, the last time we were with our friends in Matchbook Romance. Should be good getting back there and hopefully somewhere between now and then we will record another EP, but it is still all up in the air.
Estrella: Is there any song that you never get sick of hearing?
Shaun: Is “Hey Ya” still a viable option? I think I saw that video on TV at your place, and I was very happy to see it.
Estrella: It is catchy.
John: This is also a little bit older, not as old as “Hey Ya” but I never got sick of hearing “Crazy” and that got played a lot. Every time I heard it I was excited and even up to the five hundredth time.
Shaun: I think those are the only 2 songs in pop history that no one ever got tired of. Those are good but nothing recently has caught my ear like that.
Estrella: What is one of your favorite lines in one of your songs?
John: Well that is kind of hard, a lot of lines to choose from. Once the song is written I don’t usually listen to it and think about it and what I really like. I don’t go, “Oh, that was really great when I said that, really hit the nail on the head.” (everyone laughs).
Estrella: Are there any that your fans always quote you on?
Shaun: I think “It’s for the Best” and “Existentialism on Prom Night”.
John: “It’s for the Best” I think I would have to go with that but I don’t know if anyone says lines from “It’s for the Best”. I get a lot of people that quote that; anything from “It’s for the Best”. Usually when people tell me about that, it’s one that I still can relate too, I still have a connection to which doesn’t always happen after 3 or 4 years of writing a song.
Estrella: What is something you have always wanted to do but have not done yet?
Shaun: Ride a motorcycle, skydive, I don’t know a bunch of crap.
John: If you want to ride a motorcycle you got my dad, he’ll let you.
Shaun: I want to drive it myself; I don’t want to ride on the back of big Tom.
John: He would probably let you drive it.
Shaun: But I’m too afraid to do it without actually being able to do it. I would also like to have sexual relations with a lady (everyone laughs). That would be great.
John: One day it will happen for you man.
Shaun: Maybe when I am thirty.
Estrella: If you could see any band or artist perform any song live what would it be and why?
John: I would like to see The Beatles perform, “A Day in the Life”.
Shaun: I was about to say that!
John: Really? We have been right on the same page a lot of these interview questions.
Shaun: We have been trapped in the same van for far too long, we are thinking on the same level way too much.
Estrella: Do you guys have any final comments?
Shaun: No, just thanks for having us.