As It Is release new album Okay on Friday, Jan 20. We caught up with vocalist Patty Walters to talk about the new album before they tour Australia in February.
Upside: As It Is signed to fearless records roughly 2 years ago, you have released your first full-length album and have toured everywhere. Now, you’re already releasing Okay, you’re a very busy band.
Patty: It really was so quick and so intense. We started writing Never Happy, Ever After around May of 2014, we spent 9 months of 2015 on tour and then we went straight into writing Okay. We probably didn’t take more than one month off, it’s been very much a game of trying to keep up, it’s like being on a treadmill and the speed and inclination is increasing, we’re just trying to keep us as best we can.
Upside: I heard the theme was “it’s okay, to not be okay” and with your all ages shows I can imagine a lot of people, especially younger fans really need to hear that”.
Patty: I think you have this spotlight on yourself glowing off and even existing as an adult where you’re so acutely aware of all your insecurities and your imperfections. You look at the rest of the world where you think everybody’s so confident and composed but it’s true that everybody gets super fucked up. It’s okay not to be okay, nobody is okay one hundred percent of the time. These songs are living proof that we as people still struggle, always have and always will. It’s entirely okay for the people listening to this record to keep struggling as well.
Upside: I saw that you performed Okay live for the first time and you said it was a very emotional experience for you, why is that?
Patty: Yeah that’s a very personal song, it’s deeply a very transparent song and if you take a moment to read those lyrics you kind of know the extent to everything that was happening to me when I wrote that song about breaking down. Being so inconsolably hurt and needing to go to a therapist. Playing that song for the first time and even more so sharing that song with the world for the first time was really emotional. It was a super vulnerable experience because it was no longer just my experience; it was an experience that everybody would know about and to some extent judge. Be that supportively or not.
Patty: A theme for a lot of songs on this record is that they are songs about our families, lives and us as people, in a way we’ve never written about before. We really held nothing back and we went well beyond our comfort zones for a majority of this record lyrically.
Upside: Now you’re coming back to Australia again, and you’ve been here a lot, even for Youtuber conventions as well. You seem to be in love with it here, are you just avoiding winter?
Patty: (laughs) I suppose we are. I think we’re slightly scared of coming to Australia in the summer. We will see if we can handle it, my guess is we’re going to have quite a hard time dealing with the heat and the weather. We love Australia, we had an amazing time last year, the shows are so much more fun and much more energetic, everyone gets involved. Playing some of these songs for the first time will be great.
Upside: I guess part of the energy is the fact that As It Is do a lot of shows in Australia and many all ages shows as well. Firstly it’s great that you come to Adelaide and Perth to begin with, but you also do all ages shows on top of that. Is this something you consciously make an effort to do?
Patty: Oh we certainly do, I’m also really pleased to hear we’re coming to the cities that a lot of bands will leave out. We’re hugely aware that a massive portion of our demographic and fan base is under 18. When we first started going to shows, I mean I was as young as 13 or 14 years old. Concerts to me were so important at a young age, it’s so important to make your shows accessible for younger fans and make it an enjoyable show for younger fans.
Patty: My selfish reason for doing an 18+ show then an all ages show is that when you’re on tour you get a venue in the afternoon, you’ve been driving all morning, you play a show, then drive all night to another city. You never actually get to see the place where you are. But in Australia we get to walk around Brisbane, Melbourne or Sydney, so I’m mostly looking forward to that.
Patty: I always feel kind of horrendous when people are like “oh my god you’re finally playing my city, what do you think?”… I haven’t really made it much further than the car park (laughs), It’s an immaculate car park I’ll give you that.
Okay is released on Friday – Jan 20. Buy here.
As It Is start their Australian tour on Jan 31 with Australians being some of the first fans to hear songs from Okay live.
Jan 31 – Perth @ YMCA HQ
Feb 1 – Perth @ Rosemount Hotel
Feb 2 – Brisbane @ The Brightside
Feb 3 – Brisbane @ The Lab
Feb 4 – Sydney @ The Lair
Feb 5 – Sydney @ The Lair
Feb 7 – Newcastle @ Drone
Feb 10 – Melbourne @ The Evelyn Hotel
Feb 11 – Melbourne @ The Evelyn Hotel
Feb 12 – Adelaide @ Fowler’s Live