Between playing video games and tolerating fellow band mates, rest is next on the list for The Fullblast. Frontman Ian Stanger rushed out of their van. He had just woken up and apologized for being late. When asked how things were going, he simply replied, “things are good.”
This has been a busy year for The Fullblast. Earlier this year they toured across Canada with Alexisonfire and Rise Against and currently are playing with Belvedere on their final tour. The band has just released their second full-length album, Short Controlled Bursts, on Dine Alone Records. “I’m happy with it,” Stanger says of the new album. “It’s always moving forward as long as we all see progression in what we’re doing.”
Murray Daigle, who produced Short Controlled Bursts, has worked with other Canadian rock outfits such as Not By Choice and Cauterize. Stanger says they chose him because they liked the sound of his recordings. “We wanted that big production sound. We told him we’re not a pop band, we’re not looking to be on the radio, and he was cool with that.” The usual lengthy song titles are always questionable. According to Stanger, most of them are “incredibly drunken inside jokes” and you would have to ask the rest of the guys in the band about them. What about “James Eats Planet; Loves PCP” off the new record? “Before the vocals were laid down, it sounded like a Jimmy Eat World song on speed,” Stanger laughs.
With being on the road feeling more like home, inspiration for the writing comes easily. “We want to be dynamic, more than just a straight punch in the face for 40 minutes,” Stanger says. The new album does just that, experimenting with feature guitar leads and technical details the band has not focused on as much in the past. “There’s always going to be that signature sound,” he assures.
Having friends in touring bands has proven to be motivational and supportive. “Bands that we’re friends with that are doing well and giving us props, that’s awesome. You can’t really ask for better support than that,” Ian says of bands such as Moneen, The End, Summer Hero and Boys Night Out. Over the last couple of years, bands such as Dreams Among Stars and Arkata have broken up, and others have had significant line up changes, including The Fullblast, and have pressed on. “Everyone’s really dedicated because we’ve come so far,” Ian says. “We came to crossroads about two years ago where we had to decide are we doing this strictly for fun or is this something more than fun? We had to take it to that next level.”
The Fullblast started their set at 9:30 last Thursday night at El Salon. During the first song, Pud lost his guitar strap. Then he had technical difficulties with his guitar. Thankfully, Brian on bass and Andy on drums jammed to keep the crowd focused. Their set got severely shortened, only playing two new songs, with kids singing along to old favourites.
Let’s jump ahead a couple of years. “Honestly, I don’t have any lofty goals. Lofty goals would be wonderful, I would not turn away from lofty success if that’s what came along. We’ve seen the highs and lows, we’ve seen disparity, but somewhere in the middle its ok with us to cover our bills, keep writing and performing live. If we never got to release another record but got to tour forever, that would be fine with me.” Well put, Mr. Stanger.