“For a guy who allegedly loves ska so much, you really suck at playing ska on the drums.”
I’m sitting in a tiny, sweaty storage unit in DUMBO, hanging out with Sketchy during one of their practice sessions. Currently we’re waiting for bassist John Shields to return from the bathroom and to kill time, the band jokingly re-imagines their song “Rye Whiskey” as a ska-punk song. Thirty-five seconds in, and Chris Shultz (vocals) decides to give some honest feedback to Craig Shay on his performance. Despite the bluntness of the comment, Craig pays it no mind: there’s no animosity here, Sketchy is full of nothing but brotherly love. (It’s also a shame that at no point does anyone crack a “Ska-tchy” joke).
Once John returns, we all take a swig from a warm bottle of whiskey before deciding that they will give me a live preview of their debut full length album, I Wanted This to Go Different, breaking down the influences and meaning of each song after they play them. Between songs, the band also gives me insights to their recording process, such as waking up to hearing drums being tracked and taking a train to the studio with an ex-girlfriend to meet her new boyfriend.
You can read the track-by-track commentary below.
Sketchy self-released I Wanted This to Go Different on September 18, 2015 via Bandcamp. You can download the album for whatever price you’d like here.
The band will also be playing their record release show with Hopeless Otis, Disposable, Only Sibling, and Hot Love at Fat Baby in New York City on Saturday, October 3, 2015. You can find more information on the show, including where to get tickets, here.