Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Blacktop Kids: Right In The Street

By Lauren-Oliva "Liv" Simister

Monroe Township, New Jersey, most notably home to athletes and a woman who thought she could fly, is finally getting a new shot at rock n’ roll redemption in the form of Blacktop Kids. Comprised of Max (vox), Steve (bass), and twin brothers Sam (guitar/vox) and Dylan (drums), The Blacktop Kids are slowly earning their place in the spotlight. After working on their new album, Right in the Street, produced by Pete Steinkopf (of The Bouncing Souls), it’s no wonder the band is rising in popularity! In a sea of auto-tune, Blacktop Kids give listener’s a break, playing music that will take many back to the days of old-school punk, and drawing in younger listeners with the modern hardcore sounds. “Well I think the sound of punk and hardcore is really a raw and organic sound, as opposed to the kind of digital sound that auto-tune has,” Dylan says. “It would be hard to fit auto-tune into our style.” The rest of the band agrees; punk was made to be raw, basement-like.
“It’s like cheating,” says Max. “Why would an artist want to put out something that wasn’t them?” Right in the Street is definitely an example of honest-work. “The recording process was a little unorganized, because we were all in different states, and Pete [Steinkopf] was touring,” Max admits.
“The next time we go into the studio, we’re definitely going to be more organized,” Sam says. “But that being said, having the recording process spaced out gave us time to think of things to add and improve the songs.”
“Overall, we’re happy with the record, and even happier that it’s out there,” says Steve. They also had a benefit many artists only dream about—going into the studio with an idol. “It was the most surreal experience we’ve ever had,” the band say, in reference to working with Pete Steinkopf. “We’ve looked up to The Bouncing Souls for years.” “[Pete] made the recording process easy, because he knew exactly what it took. He had some cool ideas for certain songs,” says Max.
After years of being friends (the band go way back—Junior High), it’s no wonder fans recognize the band by their great stage presence and chemistry.
Behind the scenes, the members of Blacktop Kids all have different ways of getting fired up for a show. “I hate the time leading up to a show. You just want to get up there and go nuts, but you have to wait,” admits Max.
The twins, Sam and Dylan, are polar opposites. “Dylan always tells me I get really pessimistic right before we play,” says Sam. “You know, just thinking we’re going to sound shitty, but then getting on-stage, and having a blast.”
Dylan, however, remains…ice-cold. “I just put on my favorite cut-off shorts and smash ice blocks over my head,” he states.
“We just get fired up playing music we love,” Steve says, keeping it simple. “We love playing with each other and for anyone who will listen.”
As musicians and concert-goers, The Blacktop Kids have been to their fair share of concerts. “We all love to see fans go nuts, respectfully,” the band says. “We hate seeing people just sitting and not getting into the music.”
“We’re doing this for the music,” Max says. “Not to get drunk.”
“I think the band and the concert-goers need to have fun,” says Sam. “Energy is infectious.”
Unfortunately, due to being so “scattered about,” Blacktop Kids are finding touring difficult. “We’re definitely excited to tour when we can,” they say. “But for now, we’re just getting stoked for our future shows, like playing a basement in The Holy Mess on the fifth of March.”
As disappointing as the wait can be, fans can rest easy, knowing this may mean an even more energetic show. “Because we can’t get on-stage often, when we do get on [stage] or even get a band practice in, the anticipation kind of explodes,” they laugh.
Blacktop Kids are playing Friday March 11th @ Marlboro Rec Center in Marlboro, NJ.
Check out Blacktop Kids on, and on, and order their new album, Right in the Street at

No comments:

Post a Comment