Interview: The Undecided Majors

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by Danielle Holian

For our readers, please describe your musical background.

Scott: Our musical background started as a very heavy Blink and Green Day influence as well as some early 2000’s material like Sum 41. We didn’t really get into the more hardcore style of pop punk until about 2013. It was about that time that we wanted to get into the studio and record more heavier versions of pop punk similar to what Four Year Strong was doing or A Day To Remember. Unfortunately, we did not get that in our 2013 EP but I feel this EP is the start of future material going in that direction.

Why did you choose The Undecided Majors as the band’s name?

Scott: We chose The Undecided Majors because we were going to college at the time in our local town where we grew up while all of our friends went off to major universities. It felt like our friends knew what they wanted ultimately with their careers and we didn’t. I remember sitting in on a session with my advisor and she asked me, “what is your major?” and I shrugged my shoulders. She said, “Okay, I’ll just put down ‘Undecided Major’”. That is when it hit me that the three of us, at the time, were Undecided Majors. So ultimately it became, The Undecided Majors.

Who or what are your influences?

Scott: As for us as a band I know that New Found Glory is an influence of ours right next to Blink and Four Year Strong, just artists similar in that genre. Even earlier work of The Starting Line has a lot of influence for us.

What drew you to the pop/punk scene?

Scott: The energy. I remember going to shows and the pop punk band or even the cover band that was covering Blink and Jimmy Eat World, and all those awesome bands got the crowd involved and it was like a “high” on stage. Seeing everyone sing back the songs with such energy is the greatest feeling in this scene.

Tell us a bit about your first EP Redemption Rule.

Scott: Redemption Rule was made up of 4 songs we originally wrote in the baby phase of our band. We wanted it to go in the Four Year Strong direction in the studio but due to the producer we were with it ended up being more of an Alternative 90’s Rock EP. Which, we learned from that the producer we had just wasn’t the producer for us. It was a learning experience. That EP had a lot of rewrites lyrically, melodically, instrumentally, etc. We tore apart those songs originally and built them back to what they ended up being.

Tell us a bit about the background of In Spite.

Scott: In Spite was the first material I had written in well over a year. We had the opportunity to produce and I had the opportunity to engineer my first album and this EP ended up being the result. The EP is conceptual in a way. Meant to be a storyline for this girl “Cindy” who gets caught up in the infidelities and betrayal of her friends to fill the emptiness inside of her. I wrote “Cindy’s Downfall” as the first song in over a year and it was like breaking down the barrier to my writers block. I started writing these songs non-stop.

Who or what inspired each track? And what was the songwriting process like?

Scott: Ex-girlfriends inspired each track (haha) that and life. The last song, “Insanity”, I wrote as the point of view from the boyfriends stand point of being betrayed and him finding out everything she had been up to eventually is driving him insane. The songwriting process was pretty cool. Jake and I write really well together. I’ll have a simple guitar riff idea, then he will get on drums, we’ll play through it a few times and then I’ll start to experiment. It’s weird because he’ll know when I move to a different riff and just keep going and the songs eventually develop to what they become.

When making music, what makes it interesting?

Scott: Honestly, what makes making music interesting is the first day in the studio or rehearsal space, you look at everyone you’re jamming with and just say, “hey I have an idea”, and see where it goes. I love coming in with a simple idea and depending who you’re working with, you can develop those songs into something that yourself as an artist can be proud of. The studio process is the best because you get to sit there and experiment with so many different effects, placements of instruments, even different instrumentation… It’s great. It’s like opening pandoras box to your creative side and seeing what comes out.

How has your music evolved since the band began?

Scott: Our music has evolved so much since the band started. At one point we were looking for a lead singer because none of us in the band could play and sing at the same time (laughs). We then lost our bassist and no one in the band wanted to play bass, so I stepped in and filled that position and now I love it! Our style went from God awful writing with very cheesy lyrics and just one guitar on recordings to what you hear today on In Spite. It’s been 10 years Jake and I have been in a band together and my it has changed so much.

Where can someone view your music?

Scott: Ohhh geez, ReverbNation, our artist e-card site, SoundcloudFacebook I think, and even some YouTube. You might even catch old live performances of us on there.

What has been the biggest challenge for the band so far?

Scott: The biggest challenge for the band so far has to be getting out and playing shows. That’s usually an easy thing to do but due to our distance currently and we are finishing up school, we would have to have a tour or something laid out to make it possible.

Do you have any advice for fellow writers?

Scott: Write all the time, one idea might not stick but don’t let that get you down. Not everything I write is my favorite but I still work on it and work on it to make it something I’m proud of.

Any last words?

Scott: The last 10 years have been crazy. We’ve had amazing opportunities, we have had successes and we have had lows… but we keep pushing forward. All I can say is give this EP a listen to. And if you would like to book us just shoot us a Facebook message.
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