We all have certain types of music that we turn to when we want to feel...something. Some days we set our playlists to music that makes us want to dance and other days our music leads us to past times when we felt deeper emotions. Good music does that. It's melodies can elicit movements in our body, but great music can make you move and contain lyrics that hit your soul. And that's exactly what Future Generations next album Landscape does very well. It's release on September 14 is highly anticipated and from the first few singles that have been dropped, there's no question why peeps are standing at attention and excited about the upcoming tour.
We spent some time with band member Devon Sheridan to talk about the new album, how the band met, living with his bandmates, and Fortnite...of course.
NON: Just listening to this album, you can tell how much fun you guys had making it. Tell us about the process.
Devon: It was incredibly fun. It was a fun process. The five of us would sit in our little apartment in Brooklyn and just like throw stuff at the wall. That's the way we write, we build, and we just keep building. And when we brought all that to the studio, it was just this intense 14-day span where every day we would just work on a song. It was definitely blood, sweat, and tears. The friendship we have is involved in the process.
NON: You can really tell how your friendship affects the product. So, tell us about how you guys formed, how did this band come to be?
Devon: We all met in college. Eddie, Eric, and Mike...they all lived in this community dorm. It was a Jesuit college where you had to swear to not party(laughs.) You swear to be a good boy. They had that built-in, shared, communal vibe at their college. I was in a another dorm across the way that was just totally raucous with debauchery(laughs.) I don't really think if we all lived in that dorm that this band would exist(laughs.) They were very musically inclined and liked to play. Playing music was a great way to socialize and make friends. I played in a couple bands in college. Mike was a guy I actually saw perform and admired. The community really was open to music so you would hear about other bands and check them out. Eddie heard about me and I kid you not...just tapped me on the shoulder while we were in line at a dance and asked me if I wanted to be in the band. We were standing in line with our girlfriends and I had heard of Eddie before that because I had seen him perform. I was like 'hell yeah,' I would love to be in your band. Things got serious, they had written a few tracks and gained a lot of traction. We got signed to a label. But, adding Dylan was a true testament of our friendship. He tried out for the band and we liked him. A few months later we asked him to move in with us and he's now one of my best friends.
NON: Its's awesome to hear stories like that. You always hear about how some bands are manufactured and how they don't really hang out or like each other. So, it's awesome to hear how you guys met. I can totally see the sense of humor in the stuff that you guys do. Like some of the promos on YouTube for some of the singles, they are hilarious. Talk about the promo with the horse(laughs.)
Devon: That's me with the horse! Honestly, when we first came out, we tried really hard to be this cool band and make that our brand. It wasn't really super natural for us. We had a tough time navigating that. We are all individuals, we are into different things. We are more interested in having fun and showing our personalities.
NON: You guys are on tour and will be in San Francisco in early October. And I am sure that fun energy you guys talk about is going to be awesome to see on stage. Speaking of videos, tell us about your video for one of the singles on the new album, "All the Same."
Devon: This video is about breaking out of monotony. Busting out of day to day conventions. It's set in a a private school and then the scene switches to a party. Every time we go flash back to the private school, things are a bit jazzed up now, things are different in the school. And by the end of the video our boss/teacher is at the party with us.
NON: I'm curious, does living together affect the music-making process? For example, you hit the studio and work on music. And then you go home, do you think "I don't want anything to do with music right now, not going to pick up my guitar, I just want to do normal things right now."
Devon: You are absolutely right, living together does affect the way we make our music. We don't have a studio, we recorded demos for our whole album in apartment bedrooms. We will have band days where we will all be together. Or it will happen naturally, I could just be chillin' at the crib in my room playing Fortnite and I might overhear Eddie playing something. He might call me over and ask me to play something or lay some bass on it. And maybe in a few hours, we have an idea for a song. Mike might come in and lay some beats. It kinda depends on who is at the apartment at that time. Yeah there are times when we want to our own thing, but that's what is great about living together...we all have this one goal and we keep grinding to get it.
NON: This new album has some deep lyrics. On one of your tracks, "I Never Knew I Was Lonely," you guys hit some personal moments.
Devon: Well, some of us during that time were really philosophizing about relationships. Eddie wrote about how being with someone will help you discover things about yourself. It is a deep theme. What we do as a band, we try to have catchy songs with deep emotional thrust.
NON: Tell us about the tour, any place you guys are excited to play?
Devon: The West Coast! I've never been to San Francisco, I'd love to really sight see and check that city out. I'm excited about Los Angeles and New Orleans. I think we have a day off around that time so I can't wait for that.
NON: Personally, did you always want to be a musician?
Devon: At a young age, my dad was a wonderful guitar player. My parents both instilled a love of music at a young age. I had cousins in punk rock bands growing up in elementary school. I saw that it could be a career. I went to college expecting to be a lawyer, writer, or journalist. But, playing live, I loved it. I always wanted to be a musician but I didn't know if I was good enough.
NON: On that note, what type of music do you like? What are you influences?
Devon: I grew up with a lot of The Beatles, The Who, The Rolling Stones...got that from my parents. That's where I learned my bass stuff. I also liked punk. But, honestly my favorite music is indie rock. Vampire Weekend is a huge band for me. Anything from that sweet spot in the early 2000s. I loved The Strokes, The Shins, and Arctic Monkeys. I like electronic stuff like Daft Punk.
NON: We have to talk about it...you mentioned Fortnite. How much do you play this game?
Devon: I play all the time. It definitely releases some of the stress that I have. I read some stuff you guys did. Fortnite's silliness is refreshing. There is no blood...it's competitive. For me, it's a nice way to stay connected with my friends. I haven't won a match yet. Well, I've won in squads and duos plenty of times. But, way too many second place finishes.
NON: Personally, I am terrible. I suck at all shooters actually.
Devon: We used to play Call of Duty quite a bit. But, it's too intense. It's dark and you have molotov cocktails flying all over the place. It hurts my heart(laughs.)
NON: So I am guessing gaming is one of your biggest ways to relax and release stress?
Devon: Yeah, I guess you can say I am a gamer. I was playing Rocket League a lot before Fortnite. I love sports games like Madden and FIFA. Some of the other guys in the band have been scheming to try to get a Nintendo Switch into the van. We see a bunch of our friends and other bands do it so we want one of those.
NON: And finally, talk about that decision to figure out that this band is my job. That you are going to go all-in and make this your career. Was that scary? Was that a tough decision?
Devon: For me personally, I thought about making that decision for about a year. I have parents who are extremely supportive of me. I didn't have that pressure. It was something I had to wrestle with. It wasn't just I spent 200K trying to get a college degree, it was also about responsibility. If you think about it, you can only really be in a band at this age. You can always go back and be a lawyer. You should do what gets you most excited about the future. If you fail at it, you fail at it...it's no big deal. Everyone fails doing this stuff all the time, it's no big deal. They land on their feet and go on to lead happy lives. But, what makes you lead an unhappy life is when you don't do what you want to do and when you don't follow your dreams.
The new CD Landscape drops September 14 on Frenchkiss Records and it's definitely one you don't want to pass up. It's ultra-catchy tunes make you groove and it's heart can be felt throughout the whole album. Future Generations, a band whose songs you will be singing in your shower...very soon.
Check out the official video mentioned for "All the Same," mentioned in the article!
And, the video we talked about starring Devon.
For tour dates, merchandise, and more about Future Generations.