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Interview:
5 Seconds of Summer likes playing the big places
 

By GARY GRAFF
Digital First Media, @GraffonMusic

» See more SOUND CHECK

5 Seconds of Summer has done its share of opening shows -- for One Direction and Hot Chelle Rae -- as well as some headlining. But the latter has mostly been in small places, at least in the U.S.

So the Australian quartet's Rock Out With Your Socks Out Tour, which is playing arenas and amphitheaters worldwide, is a welcome step up the ladder.

"It's incredible to have this opportunity to create, like, an amphitheater/arena show," drummer Ashton Irwin, who at 21 is 5SOS's oldest member, says by phone. "I used to go see bands and arenas and stuff like that. It's just the coolest things ever. I loved how they all put their own spin on it and made it their own.

"That's what we look up to. That's how we got into music, by the passion and the energy that those bands put across to their fans. That's what we want for us; I really want people to leave the show going, 'Wow, I can't wait to see a 5 Seconds of Summer show again.'"

5SOS has already amassed some arena-level credentials in its short (??) history. The group's 13-month-old self-titled album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, as well as in Australia, Canada and several other countries. "Amnesia" was a Top 20 hit, while "She's Kinda Hot" -- the first single from 5SOS's sophomore set, "Sounds Good Feels Good" (coming Oct. 21) -- is making a quick climb up the charts.

And after rolling through stadiums with One Direction, Irwin says his band was well primed to headline bigger places on its own.

"It's a massive experience to actually be in a band and learn how to control stadiums," he explains. "It's a massive thing to have that opportunity. You learn. You look up to people all your life. You look at Billie Joe (Armstrong) from Green Day and Dave Grohl and stuff like that, and you look at how they command stadiums and perform and put on an intimate show in such a huge place, with 60,000 people in it. That's a hard thing to do."

So is maintaining success, which Irwin and his mates will be trying to do with "Sounds Good Feels Good's" release (as well as "The Book of Stuff," which publishes Oct. 6). The set was again produced by John Feldmann and includes collaborations with the Madden brothers from Good Charlotte, among others, and this time out Irwin says 5SOS was a bit bolder about what it wanted to do.

"I don't care what people think of us or me anymore; I just do what I do and make music," he says. I don't think you should ever go into a situation wondering what people are going to think about you; I wouldn't be in a rock band if that's what I spent my life thinking about.

"I don't go on stage going, 'Oh, wow, what are these people gonna think of me? I'm just gonna TELL them what to think of me."

5 Seconds of Summer and Hey Violet

7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 19.

The Palace, Lapeer Road at I-75, Auburn Hills.

Tickets are $29.50-$69.50.

Call 248-311-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.

Web Site: www.palacenet.com

Send your thoughts and comments to Gary Graff

 



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