By Dan MacIntosh
There’s a common music business stereotype that if brothers play together in a rock band, there is usually some serious sibling conflict. However, Every Time I Die has been going strong since the late 90s, even though brothers Keith and Jordan Buckley are the cornerstones of this hard rock act, guitarist Jordan Buckley doesn’t believe that stereotype holds true at all.
“I disagree,” Buckley counters. “It didn’t go so poorly for AC/DC, or Stone Temple Pilots, or Kings Of Leon—there are, like, three brothers in that band. Hanson gets along pretty well. It is definitely perceived as unusual [that brothers get along with each other in groups] but it’s not.” Buckley’s next comment reveals the nasty sense of humor that is so admirable in Every Time I Die. “Let me make it clear: I hate the rest of my band just as much as I hate my brother,” he clarifies.
Any band with song titles like, “Under Water Bimbos from Outer Space,” a notable track off the bands most recent full-length, Ex Lives, simply must have a good handle on what’s funny.
“You see a lot of things come and a lot of things go,” comments Buckley, when asked about Every Time I Die’s conspicuous sense of humor. “When we were kind of in the beginning phases, there was a very big trend of just taking yourself so seriously—and I don’t want to call out any bands because we’re friends with them—but it seems like every month somebody would put out a DVD where they were just giving themselves way too much credit. And granted, music can change people’s lives; but I just couldn’t believe how, offstage, these guys were great to hang out with—great to converse with and great to play shows with—but then, like, in a magazine or on a DVD they really took themselves a little too seriously. It wasn’t like a conscious decision where we all sat down and said, ‘Hey, let’s not be like this [overly serious].’ It just felt more natural. We’re just a band that’s lucky enough to pull up to a venue and play every day, so let’s not act like we’re responsible for the lives of thousands of people—like, literally. Yes, we have the opportunity to help people, and that’s great. But no one’s going to die if we make the wrong decision. It’s music! And if you take yourself that seriously, I think you’re going to run into problems a lot sooner than if you just kind of go with the flow and enjoy what you’re doing.”
Although it’s been about a year since Ex Lives was released, Buckley still views it as new music and doesn’t feel pressure to work a lot of brand new or unrecorded songs into their current tour.
“I think it’s very important to constantly have new content, especially with websites like Twitter and Tumblr,” he says. “You’re always trying to promote new content and new tours. But when we write new music, we always like to give it some time to breathe and kind of settle and be appreciated. And I think putting out new music once a year is kind of too much. We’ve been kind of going for the ‘every two years’ kind of thing, and we might start going every three years.”
Most importantly, Every Time I Die has not yet toured as the top of the bill for this latest release. “We haven’t officially done a headlining tour on it,” says Buckley. “I know we’ve done a week here and a week there, and I know we did the Warped Tour. This will be the first time we get a full, headlining set list where we get to play some of the songs we haven’t played yet.”
On this current Every Time I Die tour, come expecting a proper live exploration of Ex Lives, a whole lot of brotherly love and a large dose of humor.
Every Time I Die w/The Acacia Strain, Vanna, Hundredth & No Bragging Rights at The Glass House, 200 W. 2nd St., Pomona, (909) 865-3802; www.theglasshouse.us, everytimeidie.net. Sat, Feb. 16. 7PM. Tickets $15-$17. All ages.