They might have given advice on "how to save a life" in their similarly titled song, but The Fray reassures us that a little alcohol doesn’t hurt.
Headlining 2013 Guinness Arthur’s Day Singapore, the influential pop quartet from Denver, US, will be dropping by once again for an exclusive show for all stout and music lovers.
Before the party in September, inSing has a sober chat with drummer Ben Wysocki about the band’s expectations, gifts of Guinness from Irish band U2, and how The Fray is essentially a cross between Daft Punk and Katy Perry.
What can we expect from your upcoming performance?
I’m not really sure! Every show’s a little bit different for us. One of the best things about playing live shows is the level of exchange with the fans, that’s such a timeless thing.
We’ve been in the studio all summer working on the new record and we’re just finishing up... so hopefully, we’ll get to play a couple of the songs out there. And even if we don’t, there’s definitely a sense of newfound excitement and zeal. We’ve been to Singapore a couple of times... the people are awesome.
Speaking of your new record, any surprises cooking in this one?
We had the most fun making this album, because in the past, we took ourselves a little too seriously. There’re still some familiar, thought-provoking, sad, sappy, and emotional Fray songs that everyone’s grown to love, but this record has a side to it which is more lighthearted.
We worked with producer Stuart Price, who’s a lot more electronically minded, so sonically it’ll sound a little bit different. Some songs don’t have any guitars and some have programmed drum machines, we took a couple more risks with this record, but we’re really excited about it. The process was inspiring for us.
Could you drop us some teasers on what it’ll sound like?
Well, there is one song that is quite different for us. It sounds like a cross between LCD Soundsystem, Daft Punk, and Spoon, with a chorus that sounds like Katy Perry. Previously, Price has done a lot of work with Madonna, Kylie Minogue, and The Killers, and they all have a dance-like quality to them. If you mixed all those artistes together and they all had a baby, that baby would be named The Fray, on this new record anyway.
There is a Singapore band that will open for The Fray. Are there any qualities you’ll be keeping your eye out for?
We must say we really love this idea, because we were a local band once, and I guess we still are back home in Denver. We’re looking for confidence and talent, it has to be good and we have to enjoy listening to it. If you look like you believe it, then it’s going be a lot easier for your audience to believe it as well.
Stadiums or intimate spaces, The Fray are always ready to put on a show
In celebration of Guinness Arthur’s Day, this event will be held exclusively to 1,759 lucky fans at an undisclosed, still-secretive location. What was the strangest location where you have played?
That would probably be in a fan’s living room, which happened just last summer. We were doing some radio performances in California and a radio station suddenly cancelled our slot. We were going to just grab dinner, but there was this fan on Twitter who got so upset with the cancellation, tweeting that she had been looking forward to it for months.
So we all thought why don’t we just go to her house and play for her? We ended up doing it with just a couple of guitars and a tambourine. By the time we got there, she had pizza and chips and soda, much like a birthday party in a living room. There were maybe less than 10 people in there, but it was quite fun. If you give us pizza and soda we’ll play anywhere. Well, almost anywhere.
And lastly, any alcohol-related stories to share?
There was this one time we had the honour of opening for U2. Them being Irish and all, our first show together had us in the dressing room where they sent a cooler with a note which read, “Welcome to the tour!”, with copious amounts of Guinness and champagne inside.
And that’s not all. There were even these instructions saying their favourite drink was a mixture of Guinness and champage, where you fill a glass three-quarters full with Guinness and top it off with champagne. As strange as that might sound, it was really yummy.
Guinness Arthur’s Day Singapore 2013 | Date: 27 September 2013 | Venue: To be revealed | Log on to the Guinness Singapore FaceBook page for details