To start with, I would like to ask you to tell us something about STRAYLIGHT RUN and its members.
Straylight Run is Will Noon on drums, Shaun Cooper on the bass guitar, Michelle Nolan on piano, guitar and vocals and me, John Nolan on guitar, piano and vocals.
Your self-titled debut has just been released in Germany. How is it going for STRAYLIGHT RUN in the States?
It's been going very well. We've gotten a great reaction so far and have really only just begun touring in support of the album.
Your name is taken from a science fiction roman. What was your
intention by taking this name?
We wanted a name that didn't sound like any other band name. We also wanted a name that didn't bring with it any pre conceived notions of what our band would sound like.
I know you probably hate those questions but they definitely do interest your fans. After leaving TAKING BACK SUNDAY and starting STRAYLIGHT RUN, how did the Fans react? There has been a lot of secrecy.
Over all the fans were very supportive of us. When Shaun and I first announced that we were starting this band we got tons of e mails from Taking Back Sunday fans who were so happy to hear we were starting a new project and couldn't wait to see us play. I'm sure there were also plenty of Taking Back Sunday fans who didn't like what we were doing at all, but luckily those people have been less outspoken then the supportive ones.
John did a lot of songwriting for TBS, some lyrics are pretty personal an directly linked to John and Jesse (from BRAND NEW). How is it like to hear songs like "There's No I in Team" being performed by the new line-up?
I wouldn't really know because I've never heard any of those songs being performed by the new line up. It really doesn't matter to me anymore.
John wrote a lot of the STRAYLIGHT RUN songs during the time breaking up with TBS or even before. For me personally, your first demos are kind of the most intense songs. Did the process of leaving the band influence you and your songwriting a lot. If yes, in what way?
Yes, it definitely did. The biggest way that it influenced my song writing is that one of the main themes of the record became leaving the past behind and trying to move ahead into the future and the difficulties involved with that.
You are now label mates with TBS, is this somehow a problem for you?
No, not at all.
Forming STRAYLIGHT RUN you started back from the beginning. Your popularity grew quite a lot due to your first demos which were available for download. How did you make your way back to victory?
Shaun and I were still under contract with Victory so we had to do some re-negotiating in order to work out bringing Will and Michelle into the deal and in the mean time we wanted people to be able to hear some of our songs so we put the demos up.
The Piano is, lets say omnipresent in your songs. You are also using a drum machine and a glockenspiel (which is a German word by the way). How would you describe the music you play?
I'm not really sure. I suppose I would describe it as sometimes ambient piano based rock music that incorporates drum loops and samples.
There are two Songs, "Tool Sheds And Hot Tubs" and "Now It's Done" where Michelle is doing the lead vocals. How did this evolve?
Michelle had been writing songs for awhile and I had been hearing them develop, so when we asked her to join the band it made sense to start using some of those songs she had written.
"Tool Sheds And Hot Tubs" is also pretty different from the rest of the tracks and has a kind of disco beat. What was your intention with this song?
We really just wanted to try something different. In the future I think that our records will have even more different and odd sounding songs thrown in there and this was our first attempt at it.
How is it anyway having brother and sister in the same band?
It's good. Michelle and I have always been pretty close and have not had the kind of relationship where we fight a lot and have problems with each other. It's been like having a friend you've known your whole life in the band with you.
Four of your six demo tracks did make it on the album. Why didn't you take the other two or why those four?
Well, those songs had been out there for awhile and we didn't want to put out an album that was half full of songs that people already knew. We also had written a whole bunch of new songs that we wanted people to hear.
How do SRAYLIGHT RUN songs emerge? Is everyone participating in the songwriting process?
Normally what happens is either me or Michelle will come to the band with an acoustic version of a song and then the band will work on arranging and developing the song from their all together. Although there were a couple of songs on the record where Shaun wrote a whole song on the guitar and then Michelle and I worked on the lyrics and melodies and the band arranged that afterwards.
What are you guys doing if you are not making music?
We all really enjoy being home and hanging out with our friends and families. We are away so much that it's really nice to be home and catch up with everyone.
You have toured a lot in the States, when are you coming to Germany?
We really really want to tour outside of America and we've only done a little bit of that so far. Hopefully we will get to Germany before the end of winter or next spring.
Germany also has a pretty huge punk/hc/indie whatsoever scene. Do you know any German bands and if yes, how do you like them?
Unfortunately I don't know many German bands. I would love to hear more music from Germany and all around the world, but it's very difficult to find it here in the U.S.
What are the future plans for STRAYLIGHT RUN?
We will be touring the U.S. with Something Corporate in January and then we hope to get over to the U.K. and Europe after that.
Thank you very much for your time. Do you have any final comments?
Thank you for doing the interview with us. We hope that we can come to Germany very soon.