Beginning February 20th in Santa Ana, CA at The Constellation Room, the indie/alternative rock band Me Like Bees will be touring as direct support to Never Shout Never. Performing songs of their their latest record, The Ides (out via Loveway Records), the group are stoked to show off their rad tunes. “We’re really excited to be on the road again with Never Shout,” says vocalist Luke Sheafer. We checked in with bassist Nick Bynum to bring you, the reader, some background on this budding band.
For those not familiar with your band, can you tell us a little bit about yourselves?
Bynum: We are an indie rock band from Joplin, Missouri. We started playing together in 2009 with multiple member changes. We’ve had our current line up for about two years now.
Your new disc The Ides has just been released. Now that it is complete how do you feel about it, and what has been the response so far?
Bynum: We are pretty happy with it. People seem to really like it as well. We’ve had a lot very nice reviews of it. It’s been very humbling.
What is your writing process like?
Bynum: Usually, Luke and Pete will meet up and hash out the structure and/or words of a song and then show it to me and Tim at practice, we then hash everything out and add parts. Sometimes, they have pretty much the whole song written and we just give it the ok.
When you write do you do so with the live setting in mind, or do you write a song just for the song’s sake?
Bynum: That’s a good question. It seems like we mainly write for the sake of the song and then once we have have something we like, we see if we can play it live. The last song on our record was pretty much written completely in the studio. We didn’t even try to play it live until we started practicing for our release show about 6 months after we wrote it.
Check out the video for “The Ides” here.
Along those same lines do you take advantage of technology and email riffs and parts back and forth, or do you get together in a room in a more traditional sense and write together?
Bynum: We’re pretty traditional. We do email ideas that we’ve been playing around with to each other, but we usually work everything out in person.
What’s the story behind the name of the band?
Bynum: Haha, another good question. I wasn’t in the band when the name was decided on, so I just tell people it’s named after our hometown. The real story isn’t as interesting.
What is the story behind the name of the new record?
Bynum: Luke is very good at writing with a purpose. Some of the themes of this record are loosely based on Shakespeare’s “Caesar” and you can hear different references to the play throughout. He also had a family tragedy in the middle (or Ides) of the month which inspired our track “The 15th Day,” so that number/reference made it’s way in a big way into the album.
What do you think of the current state of the rock/metal world?
Bynum: I’m pretty excited about it! It’s easier than ever to get heard and there is a ton of great stuff out there just waiting to be heard.
What are some of the newer rock/metal bands that you are listening to or enjoy?
Bynum: I’m not sure what people consider metal anymore, but I came across a band called Marmozets this year on Warped and they blew me away. I seriously had to watch them every single day. I’m not sure if you would call them “metal” but they are certainly heavier than we are… which isn’t hard.
Do you receive a lot of support from your local scene and fans in general?
Bynum: Absolutely! We have the best fans. We couldn’t do it without them. From opening their houses and couches to coming out and singing along at shows; they are the reason we can do this!
Do you have any rituals before you hit the stage? If so, what are they?
Bynum: I think we all have our own little things. I usually try to stretch out (especially my fingers) while I get dressed, then I make sure everyone has a water before we get on stage… gotta stay hydrated.
If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only take 3 CDs with you for eternity, assuming there was a solar powered CD player, what would they be?
Bynum: That’s tough… probably an Arctic Monkeys CD (either AM or Whatever people say I am, that’s what I’m not), Def Leppard’s Pyromania and Showbread’s No Sir, Nihilism is not practical.
What has been the most memorable moment of your career so far?
Bynum: Probably winning/competing in the 2013 Ernie Ball Battle of the bands. It was very unexpected and an incredible experience.
What is the strangest thing that has happened to you on tour, or at one of your shows?
Bynum: One night, we were playing in Wichita, KS and a lady rushed the stage and started kissing me, mid-song. She spilled a drink all over my pedalboard and then just left. It was… strange.
Check out the video for “Comet and the Snail” here.