Interview: The Ready Set chats new album!

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With the smell of Warped Tour in the air, this past week I’ve been going out to interview some of the brightest faces of the current alternative scene. A multi-year veteran of this famed tour, The Ready Set aka Jordan Witzigreuter took the stage at House of Blues in Boston last Friday and we were able to grab a few minutes with him pre-set! Currently out with Emblem3, Jordan is fresh off the release of his latest full length, “I’d Be Nothing Without Your Love”, that came out April 8th. It’s the first full length album he’s fully self produced and I wanted to dive into the opportunity to pick his brain about it. Read our new interview below!

Your new album, “I’d Be Nothing Without Your Love” came out really recently, April 8th. Maybe how long has this album been in the making for you considering it is the first full length you’ve fully produced? 
So, 2014 was the last one. This one just came out so I guess I started working on it like realistically last summer. I started my other band Nekokat and then was really focused on that for a while and then sort of from that, I sort of accidentally started writing Ready Set songs again. Like I didn’t realize that was what they were going to be. Until I was like oh wait, maybe I should make a new album. I could make a new EP or something. So yeah it was like a slow process. It was kind of like I had half of it done and Hopeless got involved and I was like I guess I should make a real album now. I should just finish it up so I guess it was six months. Off and on I was working on it.

And do you feel having two different projects that the writing process changes, is it different for each? 
Yeah it’s definitely different but doing the Nekokat stuff helped me regrasp the things that I really like about writing songs and it helped me open my mind a little bit more to being a little more honest. A little bit more artistic with the whole thing. It was very much not the kind of thing where I wrote this album with the idea of having a single or a big radio campaign or anything like that. It’s very much that I just wanted to make something that was cool to me.

And you did something where you released I believe a video for each track. 
Yeah so it was because I thought it was kind of weird how people will listen to music on YouTube sometimes and it’s always just like a single image of just something. Like just the single art or something. So I thought it would be cool just to have like a little art piece type of thing going on in the background. They’re not really real videos but I think some people thought they were like official videos. They literally took like three hours to make all those. Just shot them all in one take. Me and my friends basically put on masks and flopped around for a little bit.

Then like I keep saying, this is the first full length that you produced. You had artistic control with this record. 
Yeah, in the past it would be like I would have these songs then I’d go to work with a producer on just making the tracks better or something and more produced. In the time I wasn’t touring, I was really just getting way more into like everything about production and mixing and all that stuff. Glad I did that because now I’m just always going to do that. I produced all the Nekokat stuff too. I did a bunch of other random things too so it’s been a lot more fun that way and I think it makes it sound a lot more definitive because its’ sounds I’ll use through out the whole album that are kind of staple sounds. It seems more Ready Set-ish maybe.

Like you said, you’ve been exploring production. Maybe the biggest advantage to doing that and if there is a challenge to it for you? 
The biggest challenge I think is like second guessing myself. Not knowing when it’s done and when it’s still improvable. If that’s even a word, I’m not sure but I’m going to say it is. So that’s usually the hard part and that’s why sometimes I like writing with a friend or something. Just having another set of ears to be like that’s sick like to be like that could be cooler. The best thing about it is just knowing that I did all of it. I take a lot more pride in it knowing that I built this entire thing literally from like nothing and having that finished product is really cool. It’s just easier. I can like just do everything in my house. I literally made the whole album with like a laptop, a little keyboard and a microphone. Didn’t use any sort of like outboard gear or anything like that. So that’s the best part about it is just being able to fully be in control of it.

And I wanted to ask you, Emblem3 has obviously experienced radio success like you have. this is them coming back and maybe having more of a DIY approach to it. To end it off, how has this tour been going considering the poppier audience? 
It’s actually interesting. I think we’re playing to a lot of people who don’t really know who I am which is the goal I think with this kind of a tour. Like the last tour we did with Set It Off and Tonight Alive, every night was the same reaction. Everyone knew most of the songs. It was all energy all the time. This time, it’s almost like starting from scratch and playing to a whole new crowd who doesn’t know who I am until they hear ‘Love like Woe’ and maybe they remember that. Maybe it connects the dots. That’s usually the point in the set where I think people figure it out and then hopefully, it reopens their interest.
They just stand in silence? 
Yeah, sometimes! Sometimes it’s been like that, only a couple shows. Some of them have been really surprising. There’s a lot of people at some that are like fully into it. It just depends. It’s cool though that it’s different then we’re used to.

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Colleen has been writing about music since 2009. Interviewing bands since the glory days of Warped and has continued to do so for now over fourteen years. As well as doing freelance for other publications, the love for everything rock continues today.

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