Can you tell us a little bit about your band? How did you guys get together and form Approaching Troy?
Jay: For me personally, our vocalist Jake Salazar originally was in search for a guitarist and had tried multiple different sources, including online resources. I reached out to him about filling the position, and he asked if I can record anything as a tryout type of thing, so the next morning I woke up, hooked up the camera in my pajamas, and played “Bulls in the Bronx” by Pierce the Veil, one of my favorite bands.
Dom: I was attending Five Towns College at the time, along with Jake. I never knew about him or the band. My good friend at the time had an extra ticket to go see her friend’s band, Approaching Troy. I really enjoyed their set and followed them on social media hoping to hear more. I saw they were looking to add a member so I immediately contacted them and we set up a day for me to join a rehearsal. A few weeks later, I played a few songs with them at one of their shows. Shortly after that, I became the newest member of Approaching Troy.
I read that you have an upcoming EP, Best Intentions, that’s due out on August 19th. Did you have any specific goals in mind when working on the new EP?
Jay: When writing this EP, we wanted to make this more on the heavier side. Our drummer, Joe and I, are both more heavily influenced by heavier bands then Jake and Dom are. So we all figured that mixing the two different styles of music would definitely create some awesome songs. Of course the goal for most bands is to have the songs be successful, but for us, we would love for our songs to connect with fans through their feelings and their hearts.
How does the writing process go about when writing your new record?
Jay: Our writing process generally starts with Jake creating a combination of a melody and chord structure, which we refer to as the shell of the song. Then, once a pretty solid foundation for the song is created, it’s brought to us, where we develop the songs much further.
About your newly released single, “Sparta (This Isn’t Over),” what’s the inspiration behind the song?
Jay: There’s a lot of different inspirations behind ‘Sparta (This Isn’t Over)’. Lyrically, it stems from Jake, and his past relationships. Musically, we all contributed different influences. Personally, I took a lot of my Long Island Pop Punk influences, which inspired my contribution to the song.
Dom: Musically, this song is a huge step for us. We used instruments that we would have never thought about using and we had a great producer to help us pull everything together. Definitely my favorite off this record.
How excited are you to hit the road in a few days? Anything special planned for the Best Intentions release show?
We are all VERY excited to be hitting the road again. We love traveling and meeting new people. Some of the dates on the tour are places that we have never traveled to before, so it is pretty exciting that we get to visit these new places. For the EP Release show, we are planning one of our most exciting performances yet, with songs that no one has ever heard before, along with special routines we’ve never done before. We are all very excited to share what we have in store for all of our fans.
What would you like listeners to be able to take away from your music or live performances?
Jay: We play the best we can, every time we play live, regardless of the crowd we may have. We want to make those who are watching us say “Wow they were REALLY good, who are they again?” If the listeners are happy with our performances, then we know we are doing a good job.
Dom: I feel that our lyrics are very relatable to many different situations and fans. Not only do we express our emotion through the songs, but we put everything we have into our live performance. We want everyone to be able to take away something special from every performance. That’s why we make sure every show is an amazing one.
How do you feel you’ve grown from when you first formed to now? What has been the biggest lesson you’ve learned along the way?
Jay: Personally, I’ve learned that if the musician does not have what it takes to be in a touring band, then they will not survive in the music world. In Approaching Troy, we have grown to love each other, and love what we do. We all love to play music and have a great time doing so. Our music and live performances have DRASTICALLY improved since I first joined the band, and we’ll only continue to improve. I cannot wait to see what direction our music will go in the future.
Dom: We’ve grown musically and mentally. Not only have we grown as a band, but also as individual people
Any other big plans for 2016?
For 2016, We have our EP release, and from there we will continue to write music, plan for future tours, and look forward to meeting new people.
— Jay Sutherland (Guitarist) and Dominic Bono (Bassist)
Upcoming Tour Dates:
August 17 – Trenton NJ @ Backstage/Championship Bar
August 18 – Hamden, CT @ The Space
August 19 – Patchogue, NY @ 89 North (Best Intentions EP Release Show)
Keep up with Approaching Troy!