Forget the same old music you've always gotten high to this 4/20 holiday. Why don't you consider Anarbor, a Phoenix-based band who's releasing their debut full-length album, The Words You Don't Swallow, today. It's no coincidence the group, signed to Hopeless Records, decided to drop the album today. In fact, they'll probably be partaking themselves a bit, too.
"We all do enjoy the holiday 4/20," says guitarist Mike Kitlas, 20. "(Releasing the album today) is a little more personality, a little more of the band, if you will."
While Kitlas says he thinks the song "Notorious Thugz" by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and Biggie Smalls is a great song to get high to, he suggests taking a listen to "Carefree Highway" off Anarbor's new record, a track named after the freeway the band usually takes driving back into town when coming home from tour.
"It's about friends and family and a feel-good song," Kitlas says. The band must be feeling pretty good right now--they're heading to Europe and Japan this spring before playing the Vans Warped Tour, which hits Cricket Wireless Pavilion Tuesday, June 29, this summer--and only one of the members is of age at 21.
Kitlas talked more about the album and how the group's grown since they formed back in junior high in 2003.
New Times: How have the band and you as individuals evolved since you started?
Mike Kitlas: We worked very hard on (the band), and it's been a long process. A lot has evolved since we've been 13 years old, not only our bodies, but also life experiences in general. We grew up with totally different influences than the music we're into now. Every day's a new environment and a new thing for us. Now we're about to experience our first international tour, and it's opening our eyes.
NT: What are you looking forward to about your international tour?
MK: We're all really excited to see the different culture. We all know United States, so it will be cool to see how the kids over there react to our music.
NT: Explain the title, The Words You Don't Swallow, and what direction you wanted to go with the album.
MK: We chose the title because we wanted a title to represent our album. We thought, 'What do we do with this album?' We tried to make the most diverse album possible. Each of our band members writes for the band, so when it comes to writing a specific thought, it just happened that way. Going into a song, we never really had a, 'Oh, it needs to be a darker sound or a poppier sound.' We believe no songs should sound the same. Too many bands are afraid to step outside the box and show they can have different types of songs. Bands are too afraid to achieve that.
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NT: A definite stand-out on the album is the closer, "Useless," where singer Slade Echeverria talks about how hard it was leaving your families and friends while going on tour. Have you guys gotten more used to the touring experience?
MK: That was what we were going through at the time. When we first left, we were all just 18, so it was scary at some times and sucked at times. We're all real people, and that's the message we're trying to get across on the album. We want people to know it's OK to do your own thing and not listen to other people and be an individual.
NT: What are the best and worst parts about playing Warped Tour?
MK: We get to be on such a well-known, awesome tour. We just found out the band Everclear is going to be playing part of the tour, and they're a huge influence on our band. The worst part is how dirty we're going to be.
NT: Why should people check out the album and see you on tour?
MK: I would encourage them to check out something that's something isn't samples and isn't full of fake instruments. Any instrument you hear, you'll see us play on-stage. If you'd like to see something fresh, check us out.
For more on Anarbor, check out www.anarbor.net.