Band Profile

The Copyrights

The Copyrights
Hometown: Carbondale, Illinois Current Label: Red Scare Websites: MySpace Profile
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Band Members: Adam-bass/vocals

The Copyrights Bio:

The Copyrights, in their second full-length album entitled Mutiny Pop, continue their assault on the genre of pop-punk; recreating, mutating, and reengineering the sound into something more aggressive, fun and exciting than anything heard before. Mutiny Pop is exactly what fans have demanded from "The current saviors of pop-punk."

Every few years a band comes along in the underground with enough force to break through the surface. These bands tend to burn hot; they burn bright, so much in fact that they tend to be something of a rock & roll anomaly. Immediately, everyone begins to take notice, and they leave a mark. Mutiny Pop is that bright burning light--from a band that is creating enough friction in the underground pop scene to torch the entire set of clich??d expectations of pop-punk. The Copyrights are burning bright, signaling a whole new era of underground music.

At first glance, the Copyrights strike an interesting form as a perennial underground band trying to make some sort of mark, to fill the shoes of all the countless bands that have gone before them. The Copyrights indeed stand out in the field, in a convoluted scene that often produces derivative music with little or no differentiation. After all, every era is defined by a few standouts that have stretched, shaped and reconfigured the prevailing sound into something new, different and exciting.

You may not remember the countless bands that 'rode the crest' of the second wave punk explosion of the early mid 90's. Instead, you may recall the bands that innovated within the scene and found incredible success: Screeching Weasel, Jawbreaker, the Queers, the Mr. T Experience, and Green Day--all of which helped the underground punk scene surface to the mainstream and set a new agenda in popular music.

The Copyrights are a product of the second wave and like their predecessors they are carefully changing the sound into something distinctively their own. They are of course influenced by these innovative groups but ultimately the Copyrights have succeeded by escaping their accursed influences for their own style.

Since forming in 2002, the Copyrights have released a discography packed with memorable recordings including: We Didn't Come Here to Die (LP, 2003, Insubordination Records), Button Smasher (EP, 2004, It's Alive Records), and Nowhere Near Chicago (EP, 2005, It?s Alive Records), and this years long awaited Mutiny Pop (LP, 2006, Insubordination Records). Each record is an archive of the bands musical development.

We Didn't Come Here to Die was the first step toward what was to become, Mutiny Pop. Adam Fletcher, bassist and lead vocalist described the initial process of creating the album, 'We wanted to create a punk rock record that [we] wanted to hear?short, catchy songs that were straight to the point. The message: That punk rock is supposed to be fun and for some of us it still is." We Didn't Come Here to Die was well received for just that point. Finally, there was a band that sincerely loved the genre of punk for what it was: simple, straight ahead rock & roll, played loud and fast with a ferocity that is not found in mainstream music. Guitarist Brett Hunter described what made We Didn't Come Here to Die, click with fans, "[There was] an overall positive message, about life in general and about doing what we do even if it seems a bit pointless to some people." Brett describes the albums' style, "The first record I think we were sticking more to a mold of 'simple! simple! simple!' because no one around us was doing that at the time."

The process of creating Mutiny Pop was spurred through a transition of sorts within the band. Much of the transition could be attributed to the lofty goal of artistic growth but life rarely imitates art. Instead, Luke McNeil drummer and songwriter notes, "The transition was caused by all of us growing older and fatter with more real-life responsibilities. All of this can be really depressing, or it can be viewed as an excuse or time for you take over."

Reality is a key theme in Mutiny Pop, as it strays from the message youthful idealism, "The main difference between the messages of the first album and Mutiny Pop would be that Mutiny Pop is more of a realist approach to social and political situations, and the first album was more of an idealist view." Brett Hunter adds, "Some of the core songs on Mutiny Pop are more a realization that everything is not ok and shit does get fucked up and people do betray you, and sometimes the people you look up to aren't always as great as they seem. Mutiny Pop is definitely a little more on the negative side of things, but it has more of a fuck it, we'll just keep on going sort of attitude."

Mutiny Pop begins with this type of attitude, right into the song Cashiers, which is almost a shout and response anthem, a powerful introduction to be sure. Cashier's is thematically at the heart and soul of the band. Lyrically, "We are the Cashiers ... we are delivery boys ... and we're not ashamed" It is easy to get wrapped up in those lyrics because they are completely
identifiable and these lyrics are exactly what people want to say to their detractors. The song is a fine example of what the album tries to convey, four friends, who put together band in order to say what's on their mind. Throw in a ton of energy and a sense of fun that comes with a band that seems to click both internally, and with audiences.

There is a quality to the Copyrights song writing on Mutiny Pop that expands on realism--there are none of the typical themes in pop-punk which almost exclusively involve lamenting about lost love. Instead, the Copyrights play around with these themes but never really fall into the same song writing clich??s as their contemporaries. They haven't abandoned these themes mind you, but they have turned them on their head with a surprising, indirect approach. When listening for these themes, songs such as Button Smasher and Help Me Stay Awake stand out but not glaringly as you might think. For instance, Button Smasher simply uses video games as a metaphor for love but like many metaphors the meaning can be interpreted in a number of ways. The songwriting of the album is loaded with metaphors with each song meaning something completely different to each listener. This is what makes the Copyrights such a great band. They have stretched their themes to allow for interpretation and whether they realize it or not, Mutiny Pop is quite innovative within their genre.

Interesting commentary can be found throughout the Mutiny Pop album. Thematically, songs like This Ain't Broadway, Life Vest, Camouflage, and Kill the Captains are all veiled with interesting metaphors. Stretching their themes and using a more realist approach, the band has begun their foray into songwriting that touches on social and political commentary without getting weighted down or pegged as an issues oriented band.

When meeting Adam, Luke and Brett you get a sense that they are Midwesterners who have been exposed to a larger world. They have readily departed from the
songwriting of We Didn't Come Here to Die, quite simply because they have grown as artists and their observations on the world around them have changed dramatically. Mutiny Pop is in words a part of their song writing progression; the album reflects the start of something new in the genre pop-punk. Mutiny Pop is the beginning of the third wave of punk: filled with new bands, new themes, new issues, and a coming explosion of latent energy; their time has come and this album makes their statement known, throughout the underground.


  1. Hospital Job (members of The Copyrights) perform “Damn These Vampires” on Live From The Rock Room - PUNX.UK4/25/2017 1:42 PM | Permalink

    […] pop punk act Hospital Job (featuring drummer Luke McNeill of The Copyrights on guitar and vocals) recently stopped by Live From The Rock Room to perform their song “Damn […]

  2. Success (punk) announce dates for We Still Believe Tour - PUNX.UK7/27/2017 12:55 AM | Permalink

    […] Seattle punks Success have announced dates for their “We Still Believe Tour”. It includes shows with Illinois pop-punk act The Copyrights. […]

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