Interview with Sparks The Rescue: Sparking Holiday Rescue

Sparks The Rescue began as a high school band from Maine. After independently releasing two EPs, Stumbling Skyward and Hey, Mr. Allure, the band was signed to Double Blind Music, and released yet another EP, The Secrets We Can’t Keep. Their debut album was released on in October of 2008 under the same label, then later re-released under Fearless Records in May 2009.

Since then, the band has won MTV music competitions, been featured on popular Apple games and gotten a chance to join Warped Tour. This year, Sparks The Rescue is back in the studio preparing their latest release, due out in 2011. They are also embarking on their Christmas Brings Me Down tour, their first headlining tour.

You’ve announced that you are currently writing and recording for a new album. How’s that been going?

It’s going great man. We’re just working on songs constantly. It’s coming to the tail end of the process where we’re just looking to throw in harmonies and stuff like that. But all the songs are there. We have a couple more left to record, which we’re doing this week, but we have 12 or 13 songs recorded right now. But it’s been going great. We’ve had the most time we’ve ever had to record in the studio and it’s just been an amazing process.

In your opinion, is writing and recording in the studio more fun, or travelling and touring with the band?

You know, I wish I could say it’s the best of both worlds but I definitely love travelling and touring around. It’s great. Playing live is just amazing. If I had to choose I’d do that now, because we’ve been home for a while, so I’m kind of eager to get on the road. But if you asked me that question while we were on the road I’d say recording.

Recently the band went through a line-up change, so when Mike replaced Patrick, was there any change in chemistry?

Yeah, definitely. But it’s been great. Mike’s a great contribution to the band. He jumped right in and filled the big shoes he had. This album really shows off his talents a lot. He’s a great guitarist and his skills are there on the record. You know, we were definitely sad to lose Pat but he knew he didn’t want to be in the band anymore and wanted to pursue other things. And he wasn’t really into the touring, so that’s what happened there. But we were pumped to have Mike.

So what new things are you trying with your new album?

We’re definitely just trying to mature, I mean every band says that, but we’re growing as writers. We have more time so we have more time to think about and listen to and change the songs. It’s definitely going to be a darker record, we already know that for sure. It still has a lot of energy and things going on. We’re definitely stoked.

What do you mean darker?

I feel like our last record was really lovey-dovey. This record is definitely a little darker, more rock. I wish I could explain it, but I guess that’s the best way without having music to back it up.

Is there any specific reason that the music got darker?

Well, for me personally, I’ve gone through relationships long term, and just all the touring and stuff. That just takes a toll on relationships and friendships and everything. It’s just the way it goes. And that caused more dark songs on this album.

You were recently featured on the new Punk Goes Pop with “Need You Now.” How did that come about?

We got the word that we were getting that and got really excited. We went through a few songs and came upon that one for our final decision. We had two or three weeks to work on it, but we were really excited with the way it came out. It was kind of a random choice. I don’t really know how we decided on that song, but we knew it, dropped it a few keys, and made it our own. We really wanted to incorporate things that we would’ve added into the song if we wrote it. I was really excited. I think it really stands out on the record. All the artists did really good jobs.

If you look at your progression, playing small shows, records, bigger tours, would you call yourself a mainstream band now?

I would love to be, but I think we’re still kind of underground. We’re excited to do our first headliner, and we’ll see how that goes, but right now I think we’re still underground. We’re just trying to build. Every tour is getting better and better, and we’re hoping that every record grows.

Your upcoming tour is called Christmas Brings Me Down. What was the inspiration?

We actually wrote a Christmas song called “Christmas Brings Me Down” so we decided to name the tour after it. Because it’s a December tour so we decided to have some fun promoting the song.

What bands are you bringing on the tour?

We’re bringing You Me And Everyone We Know and Amely. I’ve met a few guys in You Me And Everyone We Know and I really dig their music a lot, and Amely are cool guys as well I’ve heard.

If you could decide, what bands would you tour with in the future?

The All American Rejects. We toured with them before and it would be great to tour with them again. They were fantastic. I would love to tour with Third Eye Blind, and we love touring with Every Avenue, Mayday Parade and All Time Low.

Do you have any specific plans for after the holiday tour?

After the tour we’re definitely hitting the road in February or March, after staying home in January. We’re hitting the road hard and staying on the road for a while.

Any ideas on a release date for the new album?

We’re definitely trying to release the record in the spring time. Either spring or early summer.

Sparks The Rescue’s latest record, Eyes To The Sun, is available now and you can catch them live at Starland Ballroom on Dec. 30.