UTG INTERVIEW: Lydia Discuss Their Recent Tour, Upcoming Album

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Lydia is an irresistible band. The material they produce has always been that of those who truly possess talent. Witnessing this band perform live made that fact very evident. Their mass appeal is undeniable and the energy they exude when on stage is magnetic.

The three-piece recently wrapped up their North American tour alongside The Early November and Restorations. We got to chat with them about their upcoming new record. Follow us below for more.

Under The Gun: What are your names and what do you guys do for the band?

Justin Camacho: I play guitar and sing a little bit. I also dabble in a few different other stuff depending on the day.

Leighton Antelman: I pretty much sing and then play guitar a bit.

Juustin Camacho: And then we have Matt Keller. He’s currently outside. He plays keys and other electronic stuff.

UTG: Where are you guys from? That would be a good place to start.

Justin Camacho: Phoenix, Arizona.

UTG: Is that how you got together with 81twentythree?

JC: Yeah. We’ve known those guys for a long time. Arizona music communities are pretty rounded and everybody knows everybody. We’ve all been involved and have been doing it for a long time.

UTG: The tour you’re currently on with The Early November and Restorations is almost over, correct?

LA: This is one of the last few. After this we have two more.

UTG: How did the road treat you guys?

LA: It’s been great.

JC: Other than the rain… It’s always humbling to get a go at it and play in front of a bunch of people. We’ve hopefully been gaining new fans that have never heard of us before. We also still have a bunch of our fans showing up and that’s cool.

UTG: Are there any favorite cities you guys played to this tour?

LA: I feel like if I say a particular one, everyone else will get pissed off [laughs].

JC: I’m always a big fan of Toronto even though it’s a hassle to get up there and back over the border. It’s always a really cool city. And not to be cliche, but New York City is always a good time.

LA: Yeah, there’s so much going on here.

JC: I ate at a cafe earlier and after I was done, I just sat there for a good thirty to forty minutes and just went people watching. It’s amazing. I could do it all day long. You guys got some crazy people.

LA: I like that I get to come here one day at a time. It’s a lot to take in but the shows are always super awesome. Boston, too. Love Boston.

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(Photo by Anna Larina)

UTG: So to dive into you guys as a band, my next question is about your band as a whole. From my understanding, your lineup has changed quite a bit over the years. What do you think keeps you going and doing all that you do?

LA: Me, Justin, and Matt have been doing this and have been together for like five years. We just bring touring musicians on the road with us, so I think some of the fans’ perception is like, “Oh! They’ve got a new member,” but we just always bring them with us. It’s never really a lineup change or anything like that. At least there hasn’t been one in like five years.

UTG: That’s good that we got to clear that up. I guess by the books or when you read up on what’s written about the band, it sort of comes off like there’s been change when there hasn’t.

LA: Yeah, it’s really just a different perception.

UTG: I hear you guys have a new record coming out. Is it a full album or an EP?

JC: Yeah! It’s a full album.

LA: It has been recorded and it’s being mixed and getting all the pretty touches as we speak. It’ll be coming out in the Fall.

UTG: I’m not sure how much you guys can tell me, but if you could talk about it in a few words, what can you say?

LA: Best record you’ve ever heard! [laughs]

UTG: I’m holding you to that!

JC: We wrote it for a year or so. We took our time. We took a different approach this time. We worked with two different producers and we did half of it with Colby Wedgeworth who did Devil, and the other half with Aaron Marsh from Copeland. It’s got a different vibe. A bunch of cool ideas went around. It still sounds like us, but it’s a little different. We’re pretty excited about it.

UTG: How would you say this new album differs from the rest of your catalog?

JC: To me, it’s sort of another step in the direction I’d like to make music in. The last one was very “happy” but this one is a little more moody, mellow. We just sort of go at it and it came out this way.

LA: We’re still in the phase where we haven’t heard the finished product so it’s a little hard to get the whole vibe yet. We still can’t really apply labels on it yet because some things may change, or they may not. You can’t really truly appreciate it yet until it’s completely done and it’s how you want it. We’re very excited about the potential.

UTG: Speaking of catalog, did you guys have thoughts on the situation regarding Illuminate‘s vinyl copies? How do you want to weigh in on that?

JC: It’s coming. There was another company who got the rights to press it and we weren’t really involved with that. People have been waiting for copies so we’re working stuff out. We’ll address it all real soon.

UTG: Sweet! What was your favorite thing about recording this new one?

JC: Just hearing the ideas that we’ve had for the past year and a half come to life. We don’t come together to sit around and write. We’re all constantly in the process of coming up with material separately and bringing it to each other and piecing things together. I’m also glad that some of the things I wrote forever ago are finally coming to life. That’s my favorite part.

LA: I’m totally on board with what he said.

UTG: It’s always cool seeing your own material transform. That being said, what do you guys like most about doing what you do as musicians?

JC: Every day it’s eye-opening to me how this is what we’ve ended up doing in our lives. It’s crazy to be on the road and it’s crazy to see the turnaround, the fans, their stories, and how dedicated they all are to this. We’ve been a band for ten years and people still come and stand in line, buy records, say “hello” to us. It’s insane.

LA: It’s absolutely rewarding.

UTG: If you guys weren’t involved with music today, what would you be doing right now?

JC: I would be…

LA: He would be organizing things [laughs].

JC: Yeah, probably! I don’t really know what I would be organizing, but just in general, I would probably be organizing things right now if we weren’t playing this show. Wrapping cables and cleaning things probably.

LA: One time he bought a label maker because he likes to label stuff.

JC: I used it all on stuff that didn’t necessarily need to be labeled. And [Leighton] was pretty upset about it.

UTG: But they’re so fun to use!

JC: Right?! [laughs] But yeah, I don’t think I would go to school if I wasn’t playing music. I’d just find something else, I guess. That’s hard to think about because this is what I know. I’m sure I’d figure something out.

LA: I feel like I would play sports. I did that a lot in high school and completely cut it off when I started to do music, so I feel like if music was out of the picture, I’d just be doing sports. Even though it’s pretty unlikely to make a career out of it. I’d give it a fair go, though.

JC: I think it’s less likely to make a career out of music.

LA: Yeah. Probably very similar. I’m a really good tennis player.

JC: Oh. Here we go…

LA: I’m dead serious! [laughs]

UTG: That’s awesome. I have one last question. If you guys could be involved in a musical project with anybody, who would you choose to work with?

JC: I’ll take the easy route and say John Lennon.

LA: I was hoping you’d say the country singer… Tim McGraw! He’s great. I wouldn’t pick him, though. I would say Freddie Mercury. 100%. We’d come up with weird stuff.


Interview written and conducted by Dana Reandelar

Make sure you keep up with Lydia on Twitter as they come closer to announcing their new album.

Dana Reandelar

If not hunched over her desk writing about music, Dana can be found binge-watching old episodes of Gilmore Girls or condensing long rants to 140 characters. She also writes for Idobi Radio, and is an Off The Record podcast contributor.
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