INTERVIEW: HOW THEY FALL ON LIFE, THE PANDEMIC & NEW SONG ‘VINYL BEACHES’
How They Fall has released a great new feel-good track, ‘Vinyl Beaches’ and to celebrate the release, Strife Magazine talked to Jordan about life, music and the pandemic.
We asked – How has the period of isolation and quarantining been?
‘Like everyone else it has been a struggle at times. People aren’t meant to be isolated for so long, but the cool thing is how well we adapt. When we are in a bad situation we tend to find ways to make the best of it. It is so rad seeing people be so creative at home finally putting out the content they have been trying to make for years! Either that or just trick shot vids on Tik Tok that somehow get my attention every time. Friends and families seemed to be more connected because of the distance and keep in better contact. Though it has been rough it has been so cool to see the world come together in a time of need.
I’m also very fortunate to have been isolated with my wife Kelly and our dog Remo. Kelly and I have been married for 6 years and it has been really cool getting to know each other even more during this time. Our dog is wild and kept us busy for sure. He is little but somehow manages to tear up everything in his path from Camera SD cards to chewing massive holes in our wall.’
Do you think the pandemic has changed the way that you write music?
‘Totally! I had a conversation with my buddy Jake Joyner on my podcast “Life With Jordan” talking about this. Every recent release I hear seems to be so relatable to our current situation. This is something that the whole world has gone through so it makes sense to be on our minds creatively. The other side of the coin is all of the great songs that are an escape from what’s going on. It can be really healthy to take a step back for just a moment to breathe. There is still a ton of good in the world and I think we are seeing that now more than ever. The biggest gain from world events like this for artists is perspective. It will change our perspective on songs we have loved our whole life as well. We will start writing and hearing lyrics in a different way.’
Aside from music, what has been keeping you busy and entertained?
‘I’ve been trying to read a ton lately. That is one habit I’d love to carry with me throughout the rest of my life. Even if now that just means I’m just binging all of the Moon Knight comics before the new show comes out! The writing style from the 70’s Moon Knight is just hilarious too. It’s the “so bad that it is good” type of writing and I can’t get enough of it. I swear they just picked random names out of a hat for a lot of Moon Knights villains. Eventually they just got to occupations titles like “The Blacksmith” and of course they wouldn’t be a villain without yelling their own name over and over while alone. “This city will learn never to cross The Blacksmith again!!” Said while alone in a subway bathroom.’
‘I’ve been helping my wife with her tapestry business too! She creates hand dyed custom fiber art and it is seriously so dope. She made a post on Tik Tok about a month ago and it went viral! It has been viewed well over 4 million times and her orders are exploding! So that has been a huge project for her (and honestly a career over night) so I’ve been lending a hand wherever I can with that. If you want to check that out (which you totally should) just look up Modern Tapestries on Instagram or Tik Tok!
The biggest new hobby that Kelly and I have gotten into though is climbing! I never thought that I would be a fan of it but I love it! Not only is it a great work out but it is so fulfilling to actually be able to track your progress and level as you go. It is the best and worst way to tackle my crippling fear of heights.’
‘Vinyl Beaches’ is my favourite track from How They Fall, I love the sound and feel. What was the inspiration behind the song?
‘Hey thanks so much! So How They Fall has actually been a long running project. Though there are only a few songs actually released, I started this way back when I was 15. I recorded 17 albums during high school (all garbage but they are my babies so I love them each) and then put the project on hold indefinitely as I started joining other bands. I went on to be one of the lead singers and guitar players in a band I started with my friends called Cinders, from 2015-2020 and loved it! When I stepped back from playing in that group I wanted to try out different styles of music that I hadn’t done in the last 5 years. That is where songs like Help, Bubblegum and Sane/Okay come from. The same thing goes with Vinyl Beaches. I had never written a vibey song that feels summery but also kinda mysterious. So I went for it! That main guitar riff had been something that I wanted to use for a long time and it just fit the vibe so well. I definitely think of it more of an escape from the world than a picture of how it currently is. I desperately need a summer holiday and that’s where this song came from.’
What was the process of writing the song like? How did it start, and did it always sound the way it did?
‘Most of my writing stems from a guitar riff. I rarely start with lyrics, though I have notebooks filled with random lines. I like to focus on melodies first before anything else. Since there is so much going on instrumentally I just kept the lyrics simple, relatable, and honestly kinda dorky. I wanted to make sure I could add buckets of reverb on them and you could still hear what I was saying. I picked the most vibey thing I could for a topic… Vinyls and beaches and threw them together. It honestly just flowed together super smoothly.
I think the biggest challenge was probably the bass. I don’t actually own a bass and I don’t like any of the midi bass plugins I have. So the bass you hear in the song is actually my Taylor t5z Electric/Acoustic guitar with an octave pedal on. I just eq’d the hell out of it to get it as close to the sound I wanted. I’m pretty stoked about it since no one has guessed that it was just my same guitar I used for everything else!’
‘As I was approaching the bridge I knew I was missing something though. So I thought to use an instrument that wouldn’t usually have a place in a song like this… Trombone. I called up my buddy Bao Ha (Roadie, Motion Coaster) and had him play the lines. He killed it man, it sounds so cool! It would definitely not be the song it is without that horn in there! I think it hit exactly what I wanted. I didn’t know if I could do it but it turned out exactly how I had it in my head.’
Finally, can we expect more music from you, Jordan?
‘Absolutely! I’ll have some more stuff soon coming from How They Fall that will be in the same vein as Vinyl Beaches. I also have tunes I’ve been working on with my friends such as a new album with my old Pop Punk band Audio Connection and songs I’ve been working on for a project called Soda Ghost. Lots to come man and I can’t wait to share it all.’
Thanks to Jordan for talking to us about your new track!
Vinyl Beaches by How They Fall is now out on all streaming services and can be checked out below: