Cincinnati foursome Walk the Moon are known for their infectious dance-rock rhythms and upbeat pop melodies. In our recent interview, A Music Blog, Yea? gave the band’s guitarist Eli Maiman a call to discuss special recording moments, touring with The Griswolds, Skyline Chili, favourite dance moves, and crazy fans. Dive into the interview below before the band play Toronto’s The Danforth Music Hall tonight!
AMBY: Hey Eli, thanks for speaking with AMBY today!
Walk the Moon: Please, thanks for having us.
AMBY: It’s our pleasure. To kick things off, you recently released your new album Talking Is Hard. Tell me a little about the record and your experience recording it.
Walk the Moon: This record was a really long time in the making. We wrote a lot of it while on tour over the past three years in hotel rooms, Europe, practice spaces, the States. A lot of it came together when we rented a lodge in Northern Kentucky last summer and really got into writing as the four of us. We ended up writing about fifty songs for the record which we recorded in Los Angeles. And yea, now it’s out! We’re psyched to see how people are responding to it.
AMBY: Congrats on that.
Walk the Moon: Thank you.
AMBY: When you look back at the creation of the album, which moments were your personal favourite?
Walk the Moon: There’s a song on the record called Aquaman which was originally a song that we wrote in the lodge that I mentioned. It started as one completely different vibe and then Nick and I did another demo of it where it was acoustic, but we never had time to record it in the studio until the very last day of tracking… we decided we loved the song too much that we had to do it. We basically recorded an entirely new arrangement for it from 6pm to 7am. We pulled an all-nighter and got it done. That was a really special moment for all of us!
AMBY: When it comes to the title of the album, why did you decide to go with the title Talking Is Hard? You seem to be pretty articulate during this interview.
AMBY and Walk the Moon: [laughs]
Walk the Moon: Thanks. You know, a lot of the record is about empowerment and how much you want to connect with people. It describes our every day interactions between us and people we know and people we don’t know. It describes the process of making the record; being in a creative situation with other human beings can sometimes be difficult. We felt like it really summed up a lot of the themes on the record and the experience we had making it. It just kind of worked.
AMBY: In support of the album’s release, you’ll embark on a Talking Is Hard Tour with Aussie party-pop group The Griswolds – that line-up is a pretty stellar match since you both have some insanely fun dance music. What do you look forward to most as far as touring goes?
Walk the Moon: Hanging out with The Griswolds is going to be awesome [laughs]. We’re really psyched about that. It’s going to be some of our biggest headline shows to date, so that’s always exciting. A lot of these songs on the new record we haven’t played live yet, so I’m really excited to see how they come together in a live setting and how they fit in a set. It’s exciting to see how these songs are going to go over with people.
AMBY: Nice. Being that you’re from Cincinnati, are you all fans of the chili there?
Walk the Moon: Of course! We’re huge fans of the chili there, particularly Skyline. That’s our favourite spot.
AMBY: How or which “way” do you eat it?
Walk the Moon: I think my standard order for forever has been two cheese coneys, mustard and onions, with a small 3-way.
AMBY: I love how you knew that right away. I was there a few years ago; it was my first time having chili from there and the hype was insane. I ordered the 3-way with the spaghetti, chili, and cheddar cheese. It was so good.
Walk the Moon: [laughs] I’m glad you liked it. A lot of people from out of town don’t get it.
AMBY: Your music is described as dance-rock, so I feel the eighties-vibed single Shut Up and Dance pays a great homage to what the band’s all about. With that said, if you had to choose, which dance move is your ultimate favourite?
Walk the Moon: I think describing the way we dance as being “moves” is probably too generous.
AMBY and Walk the Moon: [laughs]
Walk the Moon: I think we tend to flail about in an uncontrolled way and got lucky with how it looks.
AMBY: I enjoy the fact that you really embraced your goofiness in the video for that song. On that note – I read that you find your fans are super kooky and weird. When it comes to meeting fans of yours, what’s one of your most memorable encounters?
Walk the Moon: Memorable encounters with fans… The thing that we’re always impressed by with our fans is how creative they are. They will bring us art that our music has inspired them to create and that’s always a really special interaction. In terms of weird meetings, there was once a show in Dallas where a fan brought a prop for every single song that we were going to play. For Anna Sun, he had this enormous sun. For I Can Lift A Car, he actually had a car [laughs].
AMBY: Wow. Commitment.
Walk the Moon: That was one of the funnier things or interactions.
AMBY: Even though it’s ever-growing, you do manage to continue a great interaction with your fanbase. So to wrap things up, what’s something about yourself that most of your fans don’t know yet?
Walk the Moon: Oh boy [laughs]. It’s hard because we’re awfully transparent; we don’t really hide any nerdiness or anything.
AMBY: How about this… what’s the best part of being in Walk the Moon?
Walk the Moon: The best part of being in Walk the Moon is getting to be part of the live show. I feel like that’s where the heart of being Walk the Moon is. We like recording and writing, but really where we shine is from our live performances. That’s the best part.
Thank you Walk the Moon, for giving us your answers!
Interview by Alicia Atout | @AliciaAtout