Interview: Red City Radio talk about “The Dangers of Standing Still” with Paper + Plastick staff

In Paper + Plastick Records‘ first newsletter of 2012, the staff had a little chat with the members of Red City Radio.

In the interview the guys touched on topics including their latest album, “The Dangers of Standing Still”, working with Stephen Egerton, and more.

Read the entire interview here.

Red City Radio was kind enough to answer some questions from the Paper + Plastick staff for our first newsletter of 2012!

P+P: The Dangers of Standing Still is Red City Radio’s first full-length as a band and it found itself on several End of the Year lists as one of the albums of 2011, in the minds of several reviewers. With such high praise so early in the band’s career, do you find this daunting at all or motivating for future releases?

RCR: Such high praise is certainly humbling but we’re fairly confident that our best music is ahead of us. Sometimes it becomes too easy to rest on your laurels and once we finished Dangers we knew we had made the record we wanted to make. However, we knew the next one was going to be even better. So I guess we would answer “no” to both questions. We don’t need the motivation, it was already there.

One thing that really stands out on The Dangers of Standing Still is that it contains a sound that seems to mix the grittiness of a band like Hot Water Music with the melody and catchiness of someone like Blink-182 or the Swellers. What do you attribute this mixture of styles to?

I think it comes down to who we are as musicians. We are all products of our own failed bands. And with that comes a desire to collaborate as well as some inter band competition to make the best song possible. Add to it that all of our previous bands were different styles and you get a mix of vocal styles, whether it be with melody or phrasing, as well as a different approach to song craft. Or to sum it up, we just got damn lucky.

You guys spent much of 2011 touring and playing shows in support of The Dangers of Standing Still in the U.S., as well as overseas, with bands like Less Than Jake, Anti-Flag, The Dopamines and Mixtapes. Are you planning hitting the road heavily again in 2012 or are there other plans for 2012 for Red City Radio?

First off we’re doing some dates with I Am The Avalanche and Hostage Calm as well as some headline dates in late March. Then we are off to Europe to support Anti-Flag on a bunch of dates. During that time we’re also playing Monster Bash in Berlin as well as Groezrock before heading to the UK with Leagues Apart for a week or so. After that we’re going to continue writing until late summer when we plan to make good on our promise to return to the west coast. The fall is up in the air. Maybe Fest. Maybe the moon. Hopefully the moon.

Coming from an area (Oklahoma City) not necessarily known for having a good sized punk scene, can you describe what went into getting your band off the ground without having the help of likeminded, established bands in the area?

A misunderstood aspect of OKC is that there aren’t punk bands. The fact is there are many. And the scene for punk and indie music is quite large. So when we started it wasn’t difficult to book the shows at all. We just had to hustle to promote them well and the people would show up. Of course if it wasn’t for the clubs allowing us to play in the first place all of that would be moot so we do owe a debt of gratitude to places like The Conservatory, The HiLO and VZD’s for taking a chance on us.

Can you talk about the experience recording The Dangers of Standing Still with Stephen Egerton, a well-respected and established name, producing? With someone of Stephen’s stature producing your debut full-length, was there any sort of pressure?

It actually wasn’t our first time working with Stephen. We recorded our 2nd EP, To The Sons & Daughters of Woody Guthrie, with him. So when we went in we knew exactly what kind of person would be twirling the knobs. The thing about Stephen is he is extremely efficient yet very laid back.. While we did have budget and time constraints we never felt like we were compromising the final product. For that reason and many others it was a great experience.

You guys also recently put out a split with The Gamits for P+P. Can you explain how that 7″ came about?

We are all huge fans of The Gamits. Parts was one of my favorite records from 2010. Criminally underrated in my opinion. Anyway, we were touring through Denver last year and I asked Chris Fogal to come to the show and hang out. He and Forrest showed up, we got really drunk, told a bunch of bad jokes and became fast friends. Before we parted ways we all said we should do something together in the future.. Last summer we decided we wanted to do a 7″ for Fest and The Gamits seemed like a perfect fit. We went back and forth on the concept for a week or so and then both bands just banged out or songs and the rest is history. I will say though that I still really, really want to tour with those guys. Seriously best people.

Can you explain why vinyl records are important to you, and along the same lines, why it was important to the band to have The Dangers of Standing Still released on vinyl?

Vinyl is tangible. It’s beautiful. And listening to vinyl is a process, tactile, regimented in a way. There’s also something important about breaking an album into halves for me. In fact when we track listed the record that was a strong deciding factor, getting you back into the flow with the right song. Which is why side two starts with “I’m Well, You’re Poison.” The portability of digital is nice but when the shit goes down and the networks fail, I’ll be glad I have my physical copies.

What is one artist or band that Red City Radio as a whole is a big fan of that you think your fan base would be surprised to know you listen to?

There are so many. And each of us has our own guilty pleasures as well. I think all of us would agree on the majesty of The Killers Sam’s Town. We all love Avett Brothers. Dirty, grimy hardcore hip hop is another. Lots of country music. Lots of old soul records. We’re pretty eclectic when we’re all in the van. Sometimes this leads to someone instituting the three song rule.

You’re stuck on a desert island and you can only bring three records. What do you bring?

Ask me today and I will give you one answer. Ask me tomorrow and I will give you another.

Who is your favorite of the Disney Princesses and why?

The one that has a hard life, struggles, gets what she wants, has it taken away, gets it all back and then some as the bad people get their comeuppance. Yeah. She’s my favorite.

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