In the five years since their formation, This Wild Life have undergone some crucial changes and made a name for themselves in the process. Originally a pop-punk band, the remaining two members—vocalist and guitarist Kevin Jordan, and guitarist Anthony Del Grosso—announced in 2013 they would be making the jump and continuing as an acoustic duo due to the popularity of their acoustic songs.
Since then their following has increased dramatically, with This Wild Life making memorable appearances at music festivals like Vans Warped Tour and Australia’s Soundwave. The twosome’s 2014 album, Clouded, drew listeners in with the detailed nature on the tracks and appealing melodies. As they embark on a tour with New Found Glory, Kevin took the time to discuss the band’s progression and what they take away from each performance and growing fanbase.
Jumping from one tour to another can be exhausting, and This Wild Life has three different ones from now through the summer. How do you keep up with the demands of it?
Sometimes it can be a little intimidating, but I always say any time I can get a decent shower and get all of my laundry done I’m ready to be out for at least a couple more weeks again, you know what I mean? As long as I have clean laundry in my suitcase I’m good to keep touring. It’s when you start getting down to your last few pairs of underwear that you really start feeling taxed from touring.
What are you anticipating most about your upcoming tour with New Found Glory?
I don’t think we’ve ever played for a crowd like they have before. We’ve never really gone out on an actual pop-punk tour before. Our band started off as a full band, like a pop-punk band. Anthony and I both grew up listening to New Found Glory so being able to see them play every night is going to be really, really cool. But also I think we’re going to be playing to a totally new fanbase that we haven’t played for in the last year, so hopefully we could kind of earn some new fans on this tour.
What differences have you noticed as fans have gotten more acquainted with the last album, Clouded?
I think the biggest difference that we can tell is usually when we play headline shows. The differences between supporting a bigger band where we’re introducing This Wild Life to new people who maybe have heard of us, but don’t know our music well. We couldn’t headline shows a year ago because we didn’t have enough music out to justify selling a ticket to a show of our own. So I think now that we’ve been doing a lot of headline shows separately from the tours we’ve been doing that’s where we really start seeing people who know all the songs from the album, we’re having big sing-alongs at the shows and stuff, and that’s kind of what we’ve wanted since day one.
Your first time performing on Warped Tour as a duo was last year and This Wild Life is slated to play again this summer. How will it be different?
I just think we’re going to be able to take more advantage of the opportunity Warped Tour is. Last summer was kind of us learning the ropes of how it works and trying to understand the best ways to go about promoting while we were on the tour, and just playing for the most people we did. So I think we learned a lot last summer that we’re going to able to implement this summer to make it even more successful.
We’re playing the Journey’s stage, we played the War Heads stage last year, so we’re on a great stage again and there’s a really good lineup that hasn’t even been announced yet. So I think this summer’s going to be even bigger than last one.
Our record just came out a couple weeks before Warped Tour started last summer so I think last year was us introducing the band for a lot of people. This summer I think a lot more people are going to be familiar with us. We’ve done a lot of touring since then. I think after that world tour we just did with Pierce The Veil, and after this New Found Glory tour, I think we’re going to have a lot more people in the States who are aware of the band.
Are there any bands in particular you’re excited about being on Warped Tour with?
Yeah, Neck Deep is playing the same stage as us and they were on the tour last summer as well. I think they were one of those bands similar to us in a situation where they were being introduced to these people, and they had some really good crowds last summer, but I’m imagining that this summer they’re going to have absolutely massive crowds. They’ve had so much attention on them this last year with their new record coming out that they’re going to be kind of one of those bands that everybody’s going to be going to see.
The band PVRIS is playing the same stage as us. They’re out on tour with Pierce The Veil right now; they’re doing the second half of the tour that we just ended in December. That band is incredible. Their singer is really, really good and they’ve been getting a lot of attention this summer so I think they’re going to be one of the bands that people are going to be learning about.
How have your experiences on Warped Tour impacted the band?
I definitely listened to more new music last summer than I have in years. I’m pretty slow at listening to new music; I’m not the kind of guy who listens to a couple singles and then moves on to the next thing. I listen to records in their entirety and I just beat the shit out of them. I listen to them over and over and over again so I kind of move on to new things slowly. But last summer there was so many new records coming out that a lot of the bands would swap CDs and stuff. So I was just listening to tons of new music last summer.
You mentioned listening to albums in their entirety; is this something This Wild Life aims for in the flow of their music?
We were really aware while we were putting the record together of track order and stuff like that, and trying to give each song its own voice but also keep continuity throughout the record so it feels like it’s the same band and feels like the same record. But we’re not as deep into it as a band like Led Zeppelin or something like that, but we do try to make ourselves aware of it. And I think the culture recently has moved a lot toward people picking up vinyl again. And to me that means one of two things: it means either people just like to collect it and they just hang it on their wall, or they’re actually listening to them.
Listening to vinyl isn’t something where you just skip tracks. You put on the record and it’s kind of like a conscious decision to listen to the record, and then halfway through you have to walk over and turn it over. So I think some people are appreciating albums again and listening to them in their entirety. But, you know, people want to listen to singles that’s totally cool. However people want to digest music, they should totally do that.
This Wild Life’s latest record, Clouded, is available now through Epitaph Records. You can catch This Wild Life performing at Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ on March 28 and at The Paramount in Huntington, NY on March 29. For more information, visit their website thiswildlifeband.com.