Being apart from your best friends is rough, but imagine if you were in a band with said BFFs and you all lived a ways away from one another. That’s the reality Aaah!RealMonsters deals with on the daily. One’s here, a few are there and all the while they’re doing what they can to make sure the music stays alive and well; from recording miles from one another to touring on their free days, these guys put in twice the effort 100% of the time.
Every guy of Aaah!RealMonsters took the time to talk about everything from sports rivalries to the stress of their long distance relationships. Check out that and more below.
Kendra: Let’s get to know each member of the band a little better by saying which Aaah! Real Monster character they’re the most like and quickly saying why…
Nick- Oblina- he is the most feminine and he is the tallest
Tom- Krumm- Tom has extremely hairy armpits
Keith- Zimbo- Keith likes to spread rumors and Zimbo was infamous for that
Ryan- The Gromble- Ryan has really hairy ears and he is somewhat of a grumpy gromble.
Matt- Ickis because he has large ears which are similar to Matt’s large forehead
Kendra: Before you landed Keith off Craigslist, did you have any freaks that applied that come to mind?
Tom: When I first started looking on Craigslist, AaahRealMonsters wasn’t even really a thing. It was senior year of high school and my old band just stopped playing together, so I put an ad out to try and find other people to jam with. I got some funny replies before Keith hit me up. I think one band wanted me to be a front man for a 80’s metal cover band. Haha I said no.
Keith: First off I landed Tom off Craigslist and he was the first person that WASN’T trying to start a “tool” cover band so I knew he wasn’t a freak.
Kendra: Matt, what’s going on with you and baseball?
Matt: Baseball consumed the majority of my life to date and is still something that I love dearly. Unfortunately between working full time and playing in Aaah!RealMonsters, I don’t play it as much. One of my best friends Dexter Price is still playing professional baseball, so I’ll get out and play catch with him to keep him in shape. I get out to Rockies games as often as possible.
Kendra: Are you all still all over the place; LA, Colorado and St. Louis?
Matt: We are all still spread out across the country, which makes things difficult. Tom, Ryan and Me all live in Colorado Springs, Keith lives in St. Louis and is attending Webster University, and Nick recently moved to San Antonio, Texas for a job. What is nice about living in so many different places, is that when we go on tour, we will have several “home towns.” We are all looking forward to playing in San Antonio and Austin!
Kendra: How much stress did being separated put on recording your current record?
Ryan: You could say being separated was stressful but we put a lot of faith in our producers. We had about a week when we were all together in Colorado to record most of this album. After that we have individually gone back into the studio in our respective areas to fine tune and add necessary vocals, effects, etc. Being apart is definitely difficult but we thrive on trying to do things that no one has done before.
Keith: I feel like it’s useful for allowing everyone to get their own ideas on everything but definitely makes for a longer process.
Kendra: I saw some of you (maybe all of you?) are football fans. Not just stress for the recording process, but do different locales put a wedge between any of you based on sports teams?
Nick: I would say that the distance can certainly take its toll. That being said, I don’t feel that the sports rivalries put any more stress on our relationship as a band. In fact I would say that in a sense it helps relieve some of that tension sometimes. Sports are competitive obviously but we all look at our teams as a way to bond with each other. A perfect example of this is that I grew up a Colts fan and Matt and Ryan grew up Broncos fans. Obviously they have my old quarterback on their team now so it adds a bit of fun to Sunday games when I’m watching Peyton tear it up and I know that my buddies are doing the same. Sports are just fun to watch and we all have backgrounds that allow us to appreciate each other’s teams and respect the talent. In that way sports are kind of a release for us sometimes.
Kendra: Back to the music, before you had to split the record into two, it was originally going to be called Don’t Quit Your Day Job. Would you ever walk away from a job without any notice if something that amazing popped up for the band?
Tom: Absolutely. When I go to work every day and scrub dishes all I think about is this band. We all realize that it’s going to take a lot more work until we’re able to quit our jobs. But when we’re finally able to I’ll be gone in a heartbeat.
Kendra: Right now we have Don’t Quit and we’ll soon have the second part, Your Day. Can fans expect more or less the same from that record?
Ryan: I don’t think they’ll get less but they’re definitely going to get more variety. You’ve already heard us experimenting with some new sound on Don’t Quit, and Your Day will absolutely have more of that. Attempting to evolve the genre of pop punk is what we are about.
Kendra: Do you have any details about your touring plans for 2014?
Matt: Due to all of us having full time jobs to help fund the band, we are looking to play all across the region and potentially beyond on weekends. As of now, we are making plans to play in Lawrence, KS; Phoenix, AZ; San Antonio, TX; Austin, TX; Colorado Springs, CO; Fort Collins, CO; Boulder, CO; Breckenridge, CO; Denver, CO; Columbia, MO; Kansas City, MO; St. Louis, MO; Nashville, TN; Salt Lake City, UT; Albuquerque, NM; Chicago, IL; and Indianapolis, IN. We are in the process of booking Friday/Saturday night shows in all of those locations.
Kendra: If you had to make a mixtape for your 10-year-old self, what five songs would have to be on it?
Ryan: If I could make a mixtape and give it to my 10-year-old self, here is what it would have:
Blink 182 – “Apple Shampoo”
Brand New – “Sic Transit Gloria Fades”
Alkaline Trio – “97”
Say Anything – “Slowly, Through a Vector”
Streetlight Manifesto – “A Moment of Silence”
Brand New- “Seventy Times Seven”
Kids In The Way – “Phoenix With a Heartache”
He Is Legend- “I Am Hollywood”
Underoath – “I’ve Got Ten Friends and a Crowbar That Says You Ain’t Gonna Do Jack”
Yellowcard- “Way Away”
Miles Davis- Kind of Blue; the whole album