When it comes to rock ‘n roll, the glory is in the big, loud, live shows. Bands flex their muscles through big-budget pyrotechnics and breakdowns that hit so hard, you can feel them in your chest. But sometimes, there’s absolutely nothing better than a great melody played out with an acoustic guitar. There’s something inexplicably raw and impactful about acoustic performances that makes time stand still, which is why more rock bands should take the time to put out acoustic records. Plus, fans absolutely love it.
Las Vegas rockers Otherwise answered their fans’ many requests for an acoustic release, which will be available this month. I pulled frontman Adrian Patrick aside at the West Hollywood House of Blues to talk about the new acoustic EP, when fans can expect Otherwise’s next full-length, and why more bands should record in the bathroom.
Tell me about this new acoustic album I’ve heard about.
We have an acoustic EP that’s going to be coming out in October, and it’s going to be called Enjoy the Pain. It’s all brand new songs, so it’s stuff that nobody’s heard yet, and we’re going to release it for free online. The big request from fans was the cover of Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell,” and that you’re going to have to buy on iTunes, because we obviously have to give Mr. Idol his royalties for covering his song.
Is this acoustic EP just something you guys wanted to put out as filler while you get back into the studio? Or is it really just something for the fans between records?
Yeah. It’s kind of like a fan piece. We’ve been touring off of the first album for two years now, so it’s about time. People keep asking when they’re going to hear new stuff, so our management actually came to us with the idea to do the EP. To produce it, write it, and record it ourselves on the road.
You recorded it on the road?
In various bathrooms, hotel rooms…luckily we actually did get to use a studio in Grand Rapids, Michigan called Double D Studios. That was a really cool place, and we’re very fortunate that they allowed us to use their facility.
Where is the weirdest place you recorded a song?
Corky’s bathroom. Our drummer’s bathroom. I can’t remember what song it was, but it was funny. Someone was like, “Dude, I really like the reverb on that song. The tones are great.” [laughs] We were like, “Yeah, that’s a shower you’re hearing.”
That’s awesome. Now, why the title, Enjoy the Pain? It sounds like a fully plugged-in metal album.
Well, I guess we’re sort of masochistic in certain ways. Ya know, we are our own worst enemy most of the time. So I guess you can say nothing’s really ever been handed to us. It’s a tough business that we’re in, and I feel like we’re fighting a battle, and sometimes when you hurt is when you feel the most alive.
Do you have an exact date that you’re going to put that EP out yet?
Halloween. It’s a very poignant date for us, so hopefully we can garner some of that magic.
I know there has been some personal tragedy surrounding that date. Will you guys do any songs in tribute? [Adrian and his brother/Otherwise guitarist Ryan Patrick’s cousin and drum tech Ivan Patrick tragically passed away Halloween night 2011 in Nevada.]
There is going to be an acoustic version of “Heaven,” which is on True Love Never Dies. That song is also very meaningful to us, so that will be available on the acoustic EP.
But yeah, we’re excited and very proud of the songs. And like I said, it’s all new material for the most part.
Any idea when an actual full-length may be coming out? Any plans to get back into the studio soon?
We’re hoping to get into the studio in January. And we’d like to spend more than a month recording our second album.
Are you going back to NRG for this one?
We’re in talks with Johnny K. in Chicago. Hopefully we can get him — he’s our first choice. Hopefully we can land him, so if you hear this Johnny…hint, hint.
But you know, there’s also a long list of other guys we’d like to work with if we can’t work with him.
Tell me about this tour really quick. You’re out with Filter and RED. Have you toured with them before?
No, we’ve done a couple one-offs with them but never toured. We’re really excited because, I don’t know if you’ve heard the new Filter album, but it’s amazing. I think it’s one of the best albums of the year. And Jeff Fabb, their new drummer, he’s an old buddy of mine.
Catch Otherwise at the House of Blues in Anaheim, California tonight, October 4th, with Filter, RED, and We As Human. Full tour dates and information on where to pick up the new EP can be found on the Otherwise Facebook page.