New Years Day has been in existence for the past decade, but the band now is not what it used to be in those early years. Headed by the enigmatic Ash Costello, New Years Day was a band she started when she was just a kid, and through many lineup changes, the band is now in a solid place in rock music taking a much gloomier yet developed style to their music.
New Years Day just released their newest album Malevolence, and I was able to chat with Ash Costello about the new album and the band's maturation while on their first headlining tour titled The Other Side Tour 2015 before they hit Europe for a string of dates with Marilyn Manson.
Going into this new album Malevolence, what were your thoughts about how you wanted to approach it?
I feel like for the first time in my life I'm an adult, so I wanted to approach it in a mature way. I wanted to grow up a little bit. I wanted to leave some of our campiness that we used to wear on us so proudly and grow up from that.
In some form or another this band has been around for around 10 years now.
Yeah. I started it when I was really young.
How old were you then?
Oh gosh! We were kids. We were just kids. We had no idea what we were doing. We really didn't. We had no clue. We had no one helping us. We didn't have some dad or mom or uncle or manager that was high up in the music industry. It was such a shit show, but I look back and how far we've come and we've learned it all on our own, its pretty fuckin' impressive actually.
When you look back to those early years, what really sticks out about starting the band?
Oh man, how much fun it was! Not that is not now, but now this thing is a machine now. It's its own business. Its has gears and turns and cogs and people are involved. We have employees and things. People rely on us for their paychecks. It's a thing now. Back then, it was just kids having fun.
With being around for about 10 years now, do you think the New Years Day entity has solidified itself yet?
Oh yeah. I think it's definitely grown into its own thing. It's taken awhile for people to understand it. For the first time, we are actually seeing people get it, which is a very, very exciting thing to happen.
It's a veteran band now.
For better or for worse, I don't feel like today we are the same band as we were back then. We wanted to change the name a couple years back because essentially it was like forming a new band. We didn't for legal reasons, but I don't feel like this is the same band at all, its different members, different music. The only thing that is the same is I'm in it and the name is the same, but it's not the same band.
When listening to the new album Malevolence, it's very strong with the vocal melodies. Talk about your approach on how you wanted this album to sound.
We wanted it sound heavier and darker and more emotional. Normally, I write lyrics with some sort of veil of metaphor, kind of masking what I'm really feeling, and this time we removed that. I just straightforward wrote lyrics about how I felt, which was a little nerve-racking at first. That's what people like us for, the spooky veil we put on everything and I was worried about how people would like this version of us but it's gone over very well.
Are the new songs about your own personal experiences?
This record we went solely personal experiences in my life. I went through a lot this year but there's a very powerful message in each song because I always ask myself 'How can I put a positive spin on this?'.
Do you remember a specific time when you realized this band could be something you could be doing for a long time?
I think 2013 Warped Tour is where I felt like I could make a career out of this. It was the first time people came to our signing. It was the first time people came to our shows. It was the first time people effortlessly came to see us instead of beating down people's doors.