Next Door To The Moon: All About Their New Single Can’t Quit It
Next Door To The Moon is a pop/rock band based out of Los Angeles who are beginning to make quite a name for themselves above and beyond the City of Angels. The band is composed of singer / songwriter / guitarist Connor Daniel and drummer / songwriter Jacob Guzman. Their upcoming EP was produced by none other than Will Pugh of Cartel. Can’t Quit It, the lead single from the EP, has just been unveiled complete with an Itunes release and companion music video. We recently caught up with Connor Daniel of Next Door To The Moon to find out more about the making of the Can’t Quit It single and video, as well as news on when they plan to release their EP. Read on…
Connor, what was the name of the very first song you ever wrote, how old were you, and what was the song about?
The first song I ever wrote in general was a punk rock song called, “Radio Disgrace,” with my friend Liam and a couple other friends. We must have been 10 or 11 years old at the time. The premise of the song was pretty much pre-teen rebellion vibes, I don’t recall anything specific about the lyrics. I mean, musically it was basically just noise with ear-piercing off key vocals from 10 year old me and my friends. We wrote the song probably within 20 minutes and performed it at a school function within an hour. Regardless of songwriting or performance quality, that experience actually changed my life – even though it was just in front of our parents and teachers, I had never felt the emotion of playing live music before, and it was one of several key moments that solidified my passion and dedication to pursuing a career as an artist.
And now on to the current song Can’t Quit It. What was the inspiration behind the lyrics?
When we began writing those lyrics, we knew we wanted to strive for a very meaningful and deep theme, even if it meant pushing our line of comfortability. I guess to answer the question at hand, we drew inspiration from various experiences we’ve had as well as any kind of darker emotion we’ve felt. When we needed an extra kick, we would cite the works of Edgar Allen Poe. The ultimate premise of the song is the idea of feeling stuck in a routine, working towards a goal to seemingly no avail, questioning one’s own purpose etc., but while able to find solace by numbing those emotions in some way, which is left somewhat ambiguous on purpose so the listener can insert his or her own story.
Who came up with the idea for the Can’t Quit It video.
I suppose the original draft of the idea started with me, and was then refined, elaborated on and solidified by our director/videographer, Will DaRosa. Jacob (Guzman, drummer for Next Door to the Moon) also came up with ideas for the video and we were all on the same page with everything.
Who was the director on the video and then who was the girl cast, and how long did it take to film and complete?
The director of the Can’t Quit It music video was Will DaRosa, who was/is amazing to work with. He was able to capture the essence of everything we were going for in this video. The actress’s name is Isabelle Aguirre, who is also super talented. We shot the whole video minus one scene in 14 hours (consecutively). Of course, the editing and refining process took a few weeks. Lastly, we had the video colored in Santa Monica which was about another full day’s work.
How close are you to releasing an entire EP and album?
We are aiming to drop the E.P. before Summer. First on the agenda is production on our 2nd music video from the upcoming release.
How does this new song compare to what’s heard of your previous album Invincible?
The songs on Invincible were a hand-picked selection of songs that I had written or co-written between 15 and 18 years old – a compilation of what I perceived as my best work from that time frame. However, lyrically, most of the topics weren’t meant to be too thought provoking or ambitious, rather just fun pop and rock songs. We took a more mature and I suppose dramatic approach for Can’t Quit It and the rest of the new E.P. as well. Musically, we’ve added a healthy amount of electronic elements into our music in addition to the traditional rock band instrumentation. Moreover, the sound is more refined and cohesive than our previous release, and most certainly a forward evolution. One thing I really like about the new E.P. is how every song sounds different than the others, but they all still sound like the same band and everything fits together kind of perfectly.
Connor, what was it like for you to work with Will Pugh of Cartel and how did that wind up coming about?
My good friend, Daniel Schniepp, turned me on to Cartel. We were having some drinks at his apartment one night and were listening to a bunch of their songs. We were both totally blown away by the songwriting and production quality. In the morning, I saw a post on Cartel’s Facebook about Will producing bands, so I figured I would reach out just to see what would happen. I spoke to his manager within the next couple days, and shortly after that I jumped on a call with Will himself to discuss the project. Next thing we knew, we were on a plane to Nashville to begin recording our new E.P.
Working with Will and recording the E.P. with him out in Nashville was one of the best experiences of my life. As a producer, he was totally aligned with everything we were going for and helped us create the best piece of art we could possibly make at the time. It was really more like working with a good friend or something – there was no barrier or disconnect and no initial awkwardness – we felt comfortable right away and we were able to get straight to work. He really brought the best out of us.
What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most after hearing the music of Next Door to the Moon for the first time?
I mean, I don’t really have a goal for how our music should be perceived – just that it can hopefully connect to others on any kind of emotional level. Perhaps the lyrics relate to someone’s personal story and they are able to get through their day that much easier when they hear that particular song. Or, perhaps someone just enjoys the music and could care less about it’s meaning. It actually doesn’t really matter to me how the songs connect with people, just that they connect in general in some capacity.
Future plans or shows for the band?
Can’t Quit It has actually been nominated for 2 awards by The Indie Music Channel, “Best Pop Song,” and “Best Pop Band.” The awards ceremony is on April 23rd at The Troubadour in West Hollywood – whether or not we win, we are honored and grateful to have the nominations. In regards to live performances, we are playing a show in Whittier, CA on May 6th with some awesome other local bands. We will be announcing the details for that on our social media. Other than those points, just production on our next music video and prepping for the release of the entire E.P. We also want to start doing more cover song videos again, those are really fun to make and we are able to interact with a lot of new fans that way.
Any final words of wisdom?
Words of wisdom… Don’t regret your mistakes, learn from them.
(Interview by Ken Morton)
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