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Exclusive Interview: Anthony Raneri Of Bayside

With their fifth studio album, ‘Killing Time‘, having just came out, Bloody-Disgusting got the chance to chat with singer/guitarist Anthony Raneri of Bayside about the new album, touring plans and what the band does in their downtime. Check after the jump for all the details!

1.) You guys just released your 5th studio album, but its your debut on Wind Up Records. How would you say this album differs overall from your previous records, both with a new record company and recording or content wise?
Well I think content wise, it’s probably our most cohesive record. We really got to spend a long time working on this album. We wrote it for a whole year, and we kind of fine tuned it that entire time. A lot of these songs were written early on and we spent months and months and months just fine tuning it making sure every little part was perfect. So I feel like its a cohesive record, I also think that after all these years we’ve really learned what Bayside does well and what we should sound like, and so we sort of focused on all that stuff with this album.
2.) Do you have a favorite song that’s particularly important to you or that you just really like to play off the record?
Well “Mona Lisa” is one of my favorite songs off the record, mainly because it was some sort of triumph for me songwriting-wise. I sat down to write something complicated that sounded simple, you know? Which is pretty hard to do, and I think a lot of people try to do [that], and I think I kind of pulled it off, in my eyes. When you listen to it, it sounds simple, and edgy, and it flows nice, it’s a really pretty song but if you really dove into it, and tried to play that song and figure it out, it’s super complicated so that was something that I really liked working on, that was a fun project for me.
3.) Have you played a lot of the new stuff live yet, or are saving it for the next tour?
We played a couple songs, we’ve been playing “Already Gone” and “Sick, Sick, Sick” for the last couple of months because we wanted to start ramping the record up before it came out, so we played a litte bit of new stuff. And those songs came out online, like three months ago or something so we felt like people would know them and we don’t like to play too many songs that people don’t know yet before the record comes out. But about a month from now we start headlining the Take Action Tour, which is a whole U.S. tour, so that’ll be the first time we play a lot of these new songs.
4.) I was actually just going to ask you about Take Action, I saw that you guys were going to headline that. Have you guys played this tour before?
No we’ve actually never done it before! We were on the Take Action comp  a few years ago though. But it’s our frst time doing the tour, and it’s actually pretty exciting because I grew up [with this tour]. Take Action’s been around for, I think this is their tenth year, and this is our tenth year as a band so it’s something that when I was younger, around 18/19, I would buy those comps and go to those shows on the Take Action tour when we were just starting the band.
That’s pretty cool!
Yeah! So all these years later, to be the headliner of a tour that you used to buy tickets to when you were younger, it’s pretty exciting.
5.) Can you tell me a little bit this year’s cause? Is it something that you personally feel passionate about?
We do, actually, we wouldn’t have gotten involved with it [if we didn’t]. For as many charitable organizations that we are involved with, there’s an equal amount that we actually say no to because its something that we honestly don’t feel passionate about. But this year’s Take Action tour is going to benefit Sex Etc. which is a really cool non-profit which works towards safe sex education and information, which I think is important thing that a band like us can make a big difference with. It’s something that our fans are in a place where they need to be well educated on things like that. So we can actually make a difference with something that, where I feel that there’s other charities and there’s other things that you can’t make a dent with and mayeb it’s better left to the Red Cross or something. But with this one, I think it’s something that our platform can really benefit, and I’m really excited about it.
6.) Take Action goes through pretty much the end of spring. Do you guys have any plans for this summer, or are you looking forward to a summer vacation?
Summer is like a semi-downtime for us, we just did a lot of international touring over the last couple of months, and I think at the end of the summer we’re talking about doing some more international stuff, getting back to Australia and Europe, maybe some other things, but for the most part if we’re not on tour like two months straight, we consider it [time] off. We’ll probably do some stuff for a week at a time, or two weeks at a time, or maybe some international stuff or some small U.S. stuff but for the most part it’s going to be fairly off and then in the fall we’re going to get back on tour.
I did notice that this summer you aren’t going to be on Warped Tour but you’ve played past bills.
Yeah, we’ve done it about four times? I think the first time was 2002, which seems like forever ago.
7.) Would you say that being on a tour with such a huge amount of bands is very different from touring with a smaller group, such as Take Action? Do you prefer one to the other?
You know I think it’s funny, I think there’s this perception of going on Warped Tour as being a huge tour but for a band like us when we go out to headline a tour like Take Action, there’s a thousand, two thosand people there to see us every night, to us, that’s big. With Warped Tour, you’re kind of competing. The way I look at it is like you’re playing a show at a club, and A Day to Remember is playing next door, you know? And how many people are going to come see you? You know? As opposed to headlining a tour like Take Action, then it’s our show, people are there to see us, we get to do whatever we want, we can play as long as we want. We actually way prefer doing club shows.
I never really thought of it that way but I guess you’re right, especially with such a huge roster it’s sort of hard to tell who’s there for who, there’s just so many bands.
Right exactly, like I said, I can’t think of everybody who’s on tour this year but to a lot of bands, it’s like you’re playing a show, and All Time Low is playing across the street. You know, and that’s tough [laughs].
8.) So when you guys are on tour, what do you like to do to pass the time? Are you guys big video game players, do you like to watch movies?
We do not play any video games. I think we’re the only band I know that do not keep any video games on the bus. We’re just not into it! We’re not video games guys. We’re sports guys though, so we watch a lot of sports, we talk about sports, we all play fantasy sports. My fantasy draft is actually on Saturday so when I get off the phone with you I’m going to go do some work on that. Yeah, we follow sports a lot, we watch movies, we listen to a lot of music, we play music, we always have guitars and instruments on the bus. We’re pretty mellow, we don’t party, we don’t really drink, we don’t do any drugs. We eat a lot too, I mean, what’s more important that that? [laughs]
9.) Now I want to know, since I’m coming from a horror magazine, are you a horror fan at all? Or is anyone in the band? Have you guys seen any good movies lately?
I wouldn’t call myself a horror fan, Jack, our guitar player, is more of a horror fan, he kind of grew up surronded by that stuff and he’s really into comics and all that. I wouldn’t call myself a horror fan, I mean I watch the classics, I guess just to laugh at.

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