It has been years since fans last saw an official body of work released by CRASHCARBURN. The day has finally arrived for the band to release their 4th studio album, entitled HEADLIGHTS.
In a music industry obsessed with producing back-to-back singles, CRASHCARBURN chose to take their time and release a full-length record – a defining choice from a group of musicians that understand the importance of identity. The band recorded the album with Jacques du Plessis and Adrian Erasmus at High Seas Studios in Johannesburg.
The band describes the album as ‘calmer’ than anything they have released previously. Whilst experimenting with a new sound filled with synths, falsetto and electric drums, the tracks still feature the soaring melodies, anthemic choruses and crafty earworms that have always been their trademark.
‘HEADLIGHTS’, the title track of the album, is a sonic and lyrical departure from what fans would expect from CRASHCARBURN. Featured at the halfway mark on the album, the song is about finding comfort in someone you love and trust. “There is a safety that comes with headlights, a reassurance that everything is going to be alright because you can see where you are going.” – explains front man Garth Barnes.
The band extends this metaphor to the album artwork, which features the graphic image of a burning car. “Ironically, after 10 years of fighting any literal interpretation of ‘CrashCarBurn’, this time we embraced it. We bought a car, towed it into the middle of Johannesburg city center in the dead of night and set it on fire to shoot the cover photography and a promotional video for the album.” – explains drummer Brendan Barnes.
“We didn’t overthink these songs. In the past we may have scrapped a song because it was too slow to play live or a sound we thought our fans might not respond to. This time around, we asked ourselves only one question: Does this sound great? Okay, let’s see where it takes us.”
HEADLIGHTS Track Listing:
2) Out of Control
3) Summer Forever
4) A Beautiful Year
5) In The Sky
7) Nobody Wants You
8) We Sing
9) Hearts in a Hurricane
10) Don’t it Feel Good?
12) Free Fallin’
“It’s taken six years to get here, but there is something liberating about taking your time, giving the process space and letting the songs be whatever they are going to be. We’re incredibly proud of the way it turned out and we can’t wait to share the album.”
Buy / Stream HEADLIGHTS here on Apple Music!
MA: Hey guys, rad to be chatting to you, how you doing today?
Today is a great day because our album is finally done!
MA: Lets get right into it… Where in SA are you from and how did you get started in the music scene? (Quick 101 on who CrashCarBurn are?)
CCB are from Johannesburg. Garth (Vocals) and Bugs (Drums) used to play in a band called Tweak but got started with CrashCarBurn in 2006 while they were living in London.
MA: What are some of your musical influences?
Our heroes are the rock bands we grew up listening to in High School – Jimmy Eat World, Blink 182, Weezer, Foo Fighters etc. They are the reason we fell in love with making music and I still love dusting off those old CD’s and giving them spin. I think you can probably hear a little of all these bands in our music even today.
MA: Do you have any major highlights in your musical career thus far?
We’ve done a lot over the last 12 years. We’ve headlined festivals, shared the stage with Korn, Katy Perry, 30 Seconds to Mars, Good Charlotte, Muse and The Pixies. We toured the USA, Canada, Thailand, Singapore. We’ve collaborated with hip hop stars like Kwesta and played sold out shows backed by a 60 piece orchestra. We’ve seen the most beautiful corners of South Africa and shared beers with some of its most talented artists. There are literally too many highlights to mention and it definitely makes me smile when I take a trip down memory lane.
MA: What are your thoughts of our local music scene at the moment?
It’s tough out there for bands. It always has been. You really have to love what you do because it often feels like there is very little reward other than personal fulfilment.
MA: Any acts/bands/artists that you think need a special mention?
I am consistently blown away by Gangs of Ballet. Those gents are great guys and a quality band.
MA: You are releasing your brand new album entitled Headlights. What can we expect from this album?
‘Headlights’ is definitely calmer than our previous albums. The new sound features a lot of synths, falsetto and electronic drums but we still feel like we nailed some great melodies and anthemic choruses that make it sound like CrashCarBurn.
MA: Why has it taken so long for you guys to release again? Has your style in music and general direction changed over the past 6 years?
The industry trend right now is to release singles rather than full length albums. We did that for a while and, even though we haven’t released a full album since 2012, we’ve released a good number of singles during that time. The problem with only writing singles is that you focus on creating tracks that you think will have traction on radio. You begin to miss out on other gems that might not be right for radio but are still great songs. It’s an easy way to loose track of the identity of the band as you continually chase what is popular with mainstream media. I’m glad we took a step back, slowed down and decided it was time for an album.
MA: Anything else you currently working on that we may be interested in?
We’ll have a couple music videos in the pipeline for the new album. We’ll also be touring and jumping back on the festival circuit.
MA: Where can people follow you on Social Media?
*** Interview Answered by Brendan