Published Dec 09, 2010While last week, we reported that Floridian punks Against Me! had amicably parted ways with Sire, it turns out the band are a little pissed. Back then, a blog post written by band leader Tom Gabel explained that the group "have nothing but gratitude towards all the people we worked with at the label," but a new interview reveals that the relationship was actually a little strained.
Gabel recently told Rock Sound [via NME] that a series of errors and miscommunications led to the band being dropped. He cites a lack of promotion of the group's latest album, White Crosses, and a major snafu over first single "I Was a Teenage Anarchist" as key issues with the band's unhappiness.
"I think that they [Sire] made some serious mistakes," he said. "For instance, there was a version of the first single, 'I Was a Teenage Anarchist,' that was not a finished version; it had some slightly different lyrics, some of the backing vocals weren't added in and that we had just sent it in as like, 'Hey, listen to this,' and then once the album came out, they started pushing the singles, one of them made the mistake of sending the unfinished version to every radio station in Canada. So every radio station in Canada played the unfinished version of 'I Was a Teenage Anarchist' because someone fucked up. And it's just like, 'Are you sure you're paying attention to what you're doing?'"
Following this mistake, Gabel explains that a "massive restructuring" at Sire led to the band being lost in the shuffle. "Our deal had run out -- [Sire parent label] Warner had another option, but they declined to take the option," he said. "They're just making massive cuts and a lot of the people who are unfortunately losing their jobs are kind of our team at the record label who we've worked with on the past couple of records."
While we reported on the band losing their label, we also made mention that the group were parting with drummer George Rebelo, if only temporarily. Gabel indeed confirmed that Rebelo won't be touring with the act for the next little bit, but that's because he will be out on the road with his longtime act Hot Water Music. Jay Weinberg (former Madball drummer and son of E Street Band legend Max Weinberg) will be taking over drum duties for some upcoming Against Me! dates.
"We're not ruling out that we won't play with George again in the future," Gabel said. "He's the drummer of Hot Water Music, you know, so it's not like us firing our drummer or anything like that. In the past couple of years, I've learned I don't really want anyone to feel like they're forced to do anything. Like, it shouldn't be an unnatural relationship or anything like that. I want it to be what's right and organic, in that sense. So, if George has to go and do stuff with Hot Water Music, that's great."
Check out Against Me! 2011 tour dates here.