“I love Australia!” These are the first words form Sleeping with Sirens Guitarist, Nick Martin, when he called in recently to Spotlight Report. “The people are so kind and warm – you get a really great feeling from them. I might have to get residency here!”
It’s been three years since Sleeping with Sirens last toured Australia with an impressive run of sold-out shows. That tour was to support their fourth album, Madness. But now the band is once again roaming the Australian shores in support of their latest album, 2017’s Gossip.
And despite being a little older, and apparently wiser as we’ll discover, the band is still hell-bent on providing the same energetic shows that the fans have become accustomed to seeing.
“Australia is so much different [to the rest of the world]…every show is different, and I know that we are playing some amazing, iconic places,” says Nick. “[Fans can expect] great, high energy shows – it’s going to get sweaty!”
Gossip is unquestionably a different album than the last few – exhibiting the ability of the band to switch seamlessly from post-hardcore aggression, to well-crafted melodies with lead singer Kellin Quinn’s distinctive voice, leading the charge.
It’s not a far cry from the punk roots that were so prevalent back in 2010, but displays the bands varied and changing influences.
Nick details, “we all like different music…like blues, rock, hardcore. Myself? I love rock ‘n’ roll and we all bring those influences into the music we make.”
But, unlike the seamless transitions in their songs, the band – that consists of singer Kellin Quinn, co-guitarist Nick Martin, bassist Justin Hills and drummer Gabe Barham –found the album wasn’t such a smooth ride.
Lead singer Kellin Quinn has openly spoken about how is depression and anxiety, something that he has always dealt with, had been getting worse again in recent years.
And even the production of Gossip took longer than expected, at over six months, but Nick insists that it was a good thing for this album; “The process was so much longer on this record. But it was interesting to see how it changed during the process. The length of time that it takes to make a record is not something that we’re conscious of…sometimes it takes longer to get the right result.”
The process was supervised by heavy-weight producer, Davis Bendeth, who has worked with a litany of punk, rock and hardcore bands like I Prevail, Australia’s Tonight Alive and We Came as Romans, to name but a few.
It certainly shows the progression of the band over the years. That is, in part, due to the fact that most of the guys are married with families now, leading to a different sound, different context but still, ultimately, very Sleeping with Sirens .
“Gossip is much different from the previous records – and it shows how the band is changing. Even in my time with them [Nick joined in 2013], I have seen how the band has evolved – it’s important to keep changing and moving forward”, says Nick.
Time, as he alludes to, is something that the album deals with frequently – that and the idea of hope. But to embrace the hope you first need to embrace and accept that bad things do and will happen, something that he feels is important for young fans to understand.
“We’ve all been through shit in our lives and are still going through it”, Nick Says. “We’re older now, and still hav’nt got everything figured out. I was bullied in high school a lot but I made it through. There are always going to be tough times when school sucks and you feel alone. But there is always hope and there are so many people you can talk to – never give up!”
And despite the genre gap, the recent passing of Avicii was an all too close to home affair for the guitarist; “I was really sad to hear about Avicii. I phoned my wife and it was her that told me. Music can be hard. I have had a lot of friends in the music business that have struggled with demons.”
Finding a balance is something that Nick has been working on for a couple of years. “I’m 35 now and my priorities have changed…the bands priorities have changed. My friends all think it’s drugs, sex, booze, babes and rock ‘n’ roll. Now, I like to be able to get up in the morning and just have a nice coffee.”
And coffee is more than a little morning perk for Nick, as he is in the process of developing a coffee business of his own, taking the opportunity while in Australia to do some sample tasting.
“I love coffee and that is something that I am working on in the background – to develop a coffee business. There are some great [coffee] places in Sydney. I went to Motown Coffee [Brewers] and had a great coffee”, comments Nick.
And despite with the bands rigorous touring schedule, a new album is in the works, although Nick was staying tight lipped on the details.
“I wish I could talk about it. It’s coming sooner than you think but I can’t say anymore – you’ll just have to wait and see what happens in the next few months. But even now, the music we’re making is different [from Gossip]. We’re excited about it.”
Sleeping with Sirens is on tour now:
Saturday, 21st April
Big Top, Sydney
Sunday, 22nd April
Festival Hall, Melbourne
Tuesday, 24th April
Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide
Wednesday, 25th April
Metro City, Perth
Friday, 27th April
Eatons Hill Hotel, Brisbane
For tickets head to Ticketmaster.