It’s not as if Jets Overhead thought the songs from their forthcoming Bystander EP weren’t good enough to appear on their 2009 record, No Nations. Even though the six songs are B-sides from the album’s recording session, lead singer Adam Kittredge (far left) says it was the strength of the tunes that caused the band to set them aside, not their weakness.
“We wanted to keep No Nations short, around 40 minutes long, so in one regard, we just didn’t have room for all of the songs that we recorded,” he says. “We knew it was going to take us awhile to make a record again after No Nations and we wanted to make sure we had a bit of a buffer as far as songs that we could release digitally. So it was a game plan from the get-go and “Bystander,” specifically, we felt was strong enough to help carry the EP as a single.”
Given the year Jets Overhead has had, it’s not too surprising that the band isn’t rushing into the studio — although Kittredge says they’re in the process of writing new tunes. Their 2010 concert calendar included gigs at Coachella, Sasquatch, Neil Young’s Bridge School Benefit in California, Tennessee’s Bonnaroo Festival and the World Expo in Shanghai. Kittredge says it’s important to set aside some time to let creativity percolate.
“Just getting creative together as a band is something you can’t really force,” he says. “I think if we were always trying to write songs and not giving ourselves a bit of refueling as far as material from life experience that can eventually surface, I think the songwriting might possibly be a little more empty.”
While the Bystander EP isn’t due out until March, fans can catch some snippets of it when Jets Overhead headline their first-ever show at the McPherson this Wednesday — something Kittredge says the band wouldn’t have been able to do a couple years ago.
“We feel confident that we’re going to be able to headline a theatre show, which two years ago would have been a nightmare for us,” he says. “We would have been really freaked out by that concept. But now we feel we’re ready for that kind of thing.”
Jets Overhead play with Maurice at 8pm Wednesday at the McPherson. Tickets are $17.50. rmts.bc.ca.