New Found Glory celebrate 20 Years of Pop-Punk

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New Found Glory celebrate 20 Years of Pop-Punk

It’s been two decades since four friends from Coral Springs, Florida, began jamming in their parents garage in between their shifts at Red Lobster, and despite a couple of line-up changes early on, New Found Glory would go on to became one of, if not the most, respected and loved pop-punk bands in the world. So with that said, if lead guitarist Chad Gilbert wants nothing more than to play a few video games backstage before a show, who are we to stop him?

“I’m just sitting around playing video games, [this is] interrupting my busy life of game play,” he jokes. “Nah, I’m just teasing, I’m about to go on stage.”

When we sat down with Gilbert, New Found Glory were Down Under to celebrate their incredible back catalogue as part of their ‘20 Years of Pop-Punk’ tour. “The last time we were down in Australia was for Soundwave, so it’s been a couple of years, and I’m ready to eat all of the smashed avocado toast and drink all of the local coffee.”

20 years is a long time when you consider they were teenagers when they started writing and playing music together, and while Gilbert says they love reminiscing about the past with their loyal fan base, he insists New Found Glory will continue on, bigger and better than ever – although they might sound a little different in the future.

“We have no plans of giving up, but our approach to writing music has changed as we’ve gotten older. When you are younger and still growing up, you worry a lot and sometimes your choices might be determined by something else whether it’s insecurity, or caring about what other people say,” Gilbert says. “ I think that goes away with age, and I think that’s the difference in our song writing now.

“If you listen to our new album, Makes Me Sick (out now), songs like ‘The Sound of Two Voices’ has a Paul Simon-like island vibe and it might not sound like us at first, but then, once you really listen to it becomes New Found Glory, you know?

“Same thing with the track ‘Barbed Wire’,” he explains. “It has this synth line and it sounds very eighties, it has this sort of John Hughes element, almost like a Breakfast Club soundtrack vibe to it. When we first wrote it, it felt a little different for us but we liked it and we weren’t afraid of it, and I think that’s a good thing.

“We no longer ask ourselves ‘Is it fast enough? Is it slow enough? ‘Is it angry or punk enough?’ It’s now about wanting to write from the heart and if it feels right to play it, we play it.”

So, while Gilbert is also unafraid to reveal he still loves his PlayStation, he admits his days moonlighting as ‘Captain Straightedge’ – front man of the International Superheroes of Hardcore, a side project for all the members of the band – are behind him. “That was a time and a place that was super fun, but that’s not happening again any time soon!” he laughs. “We put so much into New Found Glory now that we don’t really have time to spend putting on capes and masks, you know?”

Release: Makes Me Sick is out now.

Written by Natalie Rogers