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All Time Los is growing up -- but not too much
Maryland rockers All Time Low have accomplished quite a bit during the 10 years since its debut album, "The Party Scene" -- including six more albums, the latest of which, "Future Hearts," gave the quartet its best-ever debut last month, at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and No. 1 on the Top Rock Albums chart.
"It definitely doesn't feel as long as it's been, for sure," says frontman Alex Gaskarth, 27, who co-founded All Time Low during 2003 in Baltimore. "It's kind of been a blur. We got right out of high school and started touring. It's been this gradual kind of build and it's continued to work and be successful for us."
But, Gaskarth adds, "You can't dwell on those sorts of things when you're trying to make it happen. You'll kind of convolute the situation by worrying too much. We went at it from a position of, 'Let's work our asses off and hopefully it pays off.' We got lucky in that it did."
That also meant Gaskarth and his bandmates didn't have to worry about a Plan B.
"I think when we were in high school thinking about doing this full time we definitely struggled with the idea of not going to college and stuff like that," acknowledges Gaskarth, who's also collaborated with bands such as 5 Seconds of Summer and We Are The In Crowd. "It was a hard sell at first, especially with our parents. But it became apparent we had to jump on it while we had the chance.
"And I really didn't have much of a fallback plan. There wasn't much else I wanted to do, so it was kind of all or nothing for me."
Gaskarth says All Time Low's goals these days is to not rest on any laurels. "Future Hearts" is a case in point, while still nodding to the band's punk rock roots, it's also the band's most polished outing yet, taking advantage of hit-making producers (John Feldmann, Mike Green) as well as collaborations with Good Charlotte's Joel and Benji Madden, blink-182's Mark Hoppus and Nicholas "RAS" Furlong.
"What we wanted to accomplish was to continue to grow the sound and explore exactly what All Time Low can be," Gaskarth explains. "At the end of the day we're a pop-rock band, always have been. We're not trying to reinvent the genre or change the way people look at music or anything like that. It's really jsut about not getting lazy and not regressing and figuring out how to continue to write new songs that push us forward but don't alienate our fans by going so far off the reservation we lose track of where we started."
"I think we've done a good job of balancing all that."
All Time Low, Issues, Tonight Alive and State Champs
Sunday, May 17. Doors open at 5 p.m.
Compuware Arena, 14900 Beck Road, Plymouth.
Tickets are sold out.
Call 734-453-8400 or visit www.compuwarearena.com.
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