'New Wave,' Against Me! There's a reason this song is the title track and lead…
- Posted on Aug 22nd 2011 5:00PM by Jenny Charlesworth
Noel Vasquez, Getty Images
Somehow, though, frontman Tom Gabel doesn't think his schedule is packed enough. So, the tattooed rocker -- who proved to be a quick study after working with Butch Vig, the producer extraordinaire responsible for Nirvana's platinum-selling 'Nevermind' album, on Against Me!'s latest record -- is heading into the studio to pop his producer cherry.
"I'm producing a record for this band called Cheap Girls," Gabel tells Spinner onsite at Warp Tour. "They're a three-piece band from Lancing, Michigan, that we toured with this past winter, and they're awesome, very Hüsker Dü-ish, with great songs."
While this is the first time Gabel has been in the producer chair, he's not embarking on the project on a whim.
"It's something I've wanted to do for a while and I'd like to plan on continuing to do it," he says. "It's nerve-wracking but I'm really excited about it."
"Plus," he adds, motioning to Warp Tour's outdoor tent setup behind him, "You get to sit in air conditioning studios instead of a parking lot where it's hot as f---."
And it seems that while working with Vig, Gabel got the hang of more than just controlling the A/C.
"For me, working with Butch, I looked at those experiences like going to college. I was so happy each day to sit in the back of the room and watch him and Billy [Bush], who was the engineer, turn knobs. I totally looked at Butch as a mentor."
A mentor who produced 'Nevermind,' no less. Which begs the question, did Gabel go all fanboy on Vig and push for Nirvana gossip?
"I think that's one of the things to Butch's credit, he's just the type of person where you forget about that [connection]," says Gabel. "It's just our buddy Butch, we're just hanging out with him."
Against Me! have certainly showed their resourcefulness over the last two years. From severing ties with their former major label Sire/Warner because they felt, in Gabel's words, "we're at a point where we can do it ourselves" to Gabel's turn as a record producer, there doesn't seem to be much the band won't tackle.
"Against Me! have had a lot of experiences and I made sure to pay attention," says the singer-guitarist. "We know how to put out records, when it comes to touring we're very self-sufficient, so why not have not have all control over that and why not be steering the ship?"
As for when they may chart a course back into the studio to work on the followup to 'White Crosses,' Gabel says the fall is the target.
"I probably have five songs in my pocket now. It's too early in the process to tell what direction it will go musically or lyrically, or if there's going to be a theme or anything. I'm the type of writer who likes to get a good bulk of songs, maybe ten or 15, and then I'll realize I really like certain ones out of the batch and then I'll pursue the rest of the writing in that direction."
And as you might expect, Gabel is hoping their "buddy" Vig will be manning the producer booth once again.
"I really want to keep making records with Butch."