“In Defense of the Genre” is the album that made Say Anything a band, according to frontman Max Bemis.
Though he remains the group’s focal point, especially because of his explicitly autobiographical lyrics, Bemis says the other five members of Say Anything took a much more active role in making the music than they did on 2004’s “...Is a Real Boy.”
“We’ve become a very close family of guys over the last couple years,” Bemis, 23, explains. “Coby (Linder, drummer) has been with the band since the beginning; he shapes the music just as much as I do. And Alex (Kent, bassist), we just brought him into the songwriting process, and that took it up another notch.
“Everyone’s pretty important, but really it’s about the experience of actually being a band instead of the Max Show, which is what it was for a very long time.”
“In Defense of the Genre,” the group’s third album, is even more than just the Say Anything show, in fact. The two-disc, 27-song set features 23 guest singers and instrumentalists, including members of
My Chemical Romance, Taking Back Sunday and Paramore. Bemis says there was a definite plan to incorporating them, too.
“I wrote parts and kept parts in mind for tons of people, just certain types of singers,” he explains. “Therefore it seems like there are a lot of personalities on the record instead of like, ‘Oh, here’s another guest singer,’ just for the sake of doing it. They usually fit the song and really bring something more to the album.”
Say Anything, Manchester Orchestra, Biffy Clyro and Weatherbox perform at 7 p.m. Saturday (March 22) at St. Andrew’s Hall, 431 E. Congress St., Detroit. Tickets are $17 in advance, $20 day of show. Call (313) 961-6358 or visit www.livenation.com.
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