Alternative rock band Switchfoot delivered a fantastic performance at BearStock this year, engaging the audience both with music from their newer albums in addition to their hit “Dare You to Move”. Switchfoot could not linger long after their performance April 13, but the Cluster managed to catch the band before they boarded the tour bus going back to the Atlanta airport. Bassist Tim Foreman took a few moments to answer a few questions with the Cluster.
Cluster: Thank you guys so much for coming. My first question: What have you guys been up to since “Vice Verses”?
Tim Foreman: We have been up to everything. We’ve been working on a film and a new album. We spent the last year kind of traveling around the world. We hand-picked some of our favorite surf spots and booked concerts there. The whole idea is trying to collide music and surfing and find home in the journey.
C: So is that the idea behind “Fading West”?
TF: That’s the idea. And it started out as just a film with a soundtrack, and then we decided, ‘You know what? Why would we just make a soundtrack? Why don’t we just make our ninth record and, you know, do it right?’ So we’ve been holed up in the studio for the last six months, really taking our time to make the best record we’ve ever made. That’s always the goal, you know?
C: What’s going to set the ninth record apart from the previous albums? What’s new about your sound? Are you exploring any new ideas?
TF: Yeah, we’re really taking our time. It reminds me of what we did with “Hello Hurricane”. We’ve written another 80 songs and we’ve just really gotten lost in the studio, which is a good thing. We’ve allowed ourselves to make some mistakes along the way in order to find some new sounds, and we’re really proud of how it’s coming out.
C: What’s your favorite of all the songs you guys have written to perform? That’s a big question, I know.
TF: It is. It’s different every night. Tonight, I think my favorite was the last song we played, “Where I Belong”, which is usually a highlight for me, but tonight especially felt really great out under the stars.
C: I’m a big fan of that one too. How is playing for a college audience like this different from playing for a regular audience?
TF: I love it. I mean, it’s where we started playing music, was in college. I was still in high school, but we played colleges, you know, and that’s kind of where our music grew up. I think college is a great place for people to kind of be searching, both musically and theologically, and just kind of asking the big questions, which is always where music lives and breathes, so we always feel really at home playing colleges.
C: What were you guys like as students, if you don’t mind me asking?
TF: Oh, gosh. Well, I was studying computer science and physics, so I was pretty math-oriented in college. But we surfed a lot, so that maybe balanced me out.
C: What’s the biggest trouble you got into as a student?
TF: All the trouble I got into was in junior high and high school. I got all that out of the way before I got to college.
For more information about upcoming concerts, the album release date and developments with “Fading West,” check out the band’s website at www.switchfoot.com.