Published Jan 22, 2008Isnt Joey Cape in enough bands? Apparently he doesnt think so. Enter the Playing Favorites, the pop punk side-project kings latest addition to good music. Comprised of members of Sugarcult, the Rentals, Popsicko and Bad Astronaut (not counting Cape, whose list of credits starts with Lagwagon and ends with my heart), the Playing Favorites sound effortless, as if, after so many years of playing and touring together, I Remember is simply what came out when all the members opened their mouths at the same time. With songwriting and vocal duties split between four equally talented front-men, the music succeeds in being cohesive while alternating stylistically from track to track. Opener "Leaving Town is radio-ready pop punk, while "Everyone Else in the World follows with a mid-tempo rocker that calls to mind Blue Rodeo as much as anything ever released by Fat Wreck Chords. The only downside here is that the pop territory the band slide into can sometimes verge on saccharine, though it doesnt take long for them to rein things back in.
With everyone working day jobs in other bands, this act must be afforded a certain amount of freedom youre otherwise not.
Bassist, guitarist and vocalist Marko DeSantis: All of our bands, one way or another, have been forced to become businesses as much as bands. The Playing Favorites make both experiences better. I can bring a song to Sugarcult, and if it doesnt quite fit, its not necessarily the end of that song. I can bring it to this band. Joey has the same thing with Lagwagon. That was the original reason we formed Bad Astronaut; it was the idea of "lets just get together, get a 12-pack and see what happens. This band are the continuation of that spirit.
Did you really learn and record three songs a day for this record?
We sent each other demo sketches and had some idea which songs of our own we would bring in. In the studio, wed jam it out a few times, lay it down, listen to it, make a few changes and then do it for keeps. The drums, bass and rhythm guitar were all recorded within an hour of us learning the songs. During the week were doing this record, the drummer in my other band spent the entire week with a producer painstakingly mapping drum tempos. That kind of shit just kills me. (Suburban Home)