There are many words that are used to describe emotion but when combined, three words describe it better than any other. Those three words would be Another Lost Year. Hailing from Charlotte, NC these guys know all there is to know about emotion and writing the perfect song. Consisting of Clinton Cunanan, Adam Hall, David Whitaker, Lee Norris and Andrew Allender they are creating an empire in music with truth in lyrics and a killer live show that places them second to none. Another Lost Year recently released their first album “Better Days“ and they are currently touring in support of it now. No strangers to the road (they have been playing pretty much continuously since Dec 27th of 2011) Another Lost Year has played everywhere from Florida to New Jersey and Michigan to Mississippi and everywhere in between. That is no small feat for a band that is only about 20 months old. In hearing the CD you would never guess that they are so new to the scene. Better Days is a rock solid release from the first song “Better Days” to the last song “Forgot About Us”. Full of hard hitting rockers, metal guitar riffs and beautiful emotionally sung vocals, it sounds like every song could (and should) be a hit. If you never buy another album in your life, buy this one; it is that good.
Not only is this album one of the best albums of the year (or the last several years even) there is yet another reason to check out Another Lost Year. This band is completely committed to the fans; grateful to them for putting them where they are today. With an album that rocks, a live show that cannot be beat, and super fan friendly guys you ask, “Can it get any better than this?” Why yes it can…Keep on reading.
I had a chance recently to chat with Clinton (vocals). I was at home in my warm house (in my fuzzy slippers even.) Clinton on the other hard was braving the cold somewhere in Ohio in a rental car heading to Michigan for a show at Planet Rock. Not even a bad transmission will stop these guys from playing for their fans. Talk about dedication.
Interview with Clinton Cunanan from Another Lost Year:
Jase/RR: Hey Clinton, how’s it goin’ man? I hear you have a show tonight at Planet Rock.
Jase/RR: Oh man, that’s not cool.
Clinton: It happens. We may have to do a stripped down acoustic show, but we do not want to disappoint the fans so we are doing everything we can to get there. We’re not cancelling anything.
Jase/RR: Now that’s dedication. Let’s get into your new album “Better Days.” What was the process like creating the album?
Clinton: I start the structure and take it to the guys and we go from there. Every one of the songs is personal. Each of the songs is like a snapshot of my life. What you hear is what I was going through. That is why it is called Better Days. At the end of the day, things might get worse before they get better, but they will always get better. There will always be better days.
Jase/RR: That’s a great way to think about things, and a positive outlook. The songs on Better Days are so full of emotion. While listening to the whole thing from start to finish I think I went through every possible emotion myself.
Clinton: That is why we wrote it, to take the listener through all those emotions. We wanna take you there.
Jase/RR: Speaking of emotions, on the song “Angels” you have a female singing with you on that. She has a beautiful voice. Who is she?
Clinton: Her name is Lish. She is from New Zealand. She literally got here (to the United States) 10 days before we recorded that. She was going to do some harmonies for us and I said let’s try her on this and see what happens. She is a terrific singer.
Jase/RR: Being fairly new to the music business, what are some of the struggles you have had to go through to get your music out there and be heard?
Clinton: The biggest struggle was to keep everyone on the same page. We have had a lot of hurdles trying to get heard. We have had a lot of doors slammed in our faces. It takes a lot of money and time to record an album and do this. If something bad happens then something good always happens. That really keeps us going.
Jase/RR: Congrats on your Best New Rock Band award and on joining the Jägermeister family of bands, both very cool. What else has really stood out in your mind in this last year as far as major achievements go?
Clinton: We have had the honor to play with some great bands like Sevendust, Taproot, 10 years and we just feel so fortunate to be able to be out there doing it. We look at ourselves and say, “What are we doing?” The biggest thing is our fans. Our fans have helped us SO much. We had a few fans tell us that our music helped them through a rough time, that they were considering suicide, and our music helped them through it. That is a pretty big achievement. Knowing what you do affects people so deeply.
Clinton: I love 90’s alternative..Bush, Better Than Ezra, Seven Mary Three, Our Lady Peace, I would say that Staind is probably the biggest when it comes to writing. Breaking Benjamin is gangsta; we love them.
Jase/RR: Talking about gangsta, I saw some of your Tour Diaries on YouTube. On number 10 when you all are laid back in the van singing to Jewel I literally blew orange soda out of my nose all over the wall.
Clinton: (laughs) Ya man. The thing about those video diaries is we literally have been on the road since last year with only 15 days off so we recorded those between shows to stay entertained. What you see on there is really about what you get, we like to have fun and have a good time. That there is reality TV (laughs).
Jase/RR: When you do have time off, what do you enjoy doing?
Clinton: Snowboarding. We are winter sports adventurers. We have about 8 days off between Christmas and New Years and that is what we will be doing.
Clinton: I actually always wanted to play guitar and at one point played bass. It kind of came up that I should sing.
Jase/RR: We’re glad it did, because you are so great at it.
Clinton: (laughs) Thanks, I appreciate that.
Jase/RR: Where do you see yourselves in the next year? How about in 5 years? What are some goals?
Clinton: We want to get our album to the masses. We want to go to the top. We are going to immediately start working on the next album throughout the year next year. We are going to continue touring. In 5 years we would like to be the biggest thing out there. Not for the money and not for the fame, but we want to show people that hard work pays off. We want to show them that if you are true to yourself and true to your craft, you can do anything.
Jase/RR: That is a great philosophy to have. What are some fan favorites that you play in concert? What are some of your favorites?
Clinton: “All We Are” The live show is a lot heavier than the album. “Broken” “Forgot About Us” are brutal live. We were pent up recording for a while and once we got out on the road it comes across a lot heavier than the album.
Jase/RR: Describe Another Lost Year in 4 words. You can only use 4 words.
Clinton: Really Handsome Smelly Dudes (laughs). No man just “rock.” (laughs).
Jase/RR: How about Really Rockin’ Smelly Dudes?
Clinton: That will work.
Jase/RR: You can say anything to your fans. Go.
Clinton: We want to thank everyone. I want to thank everyone personally. From day one you have been there for us. Without you, without our fans which are our friends we couldn’t do what we do so I want to thank them.
Jase/RR: That is a good note to end it on. Thanks so much for your time. Kill it tonight!
Clinton: And thank you, we really appreciate it.
Super cool fan friendly guys and a killer 1st Album, what else so you need? Head over to Facebook and check out their tour dates. Catch them live if you can, they will rock your ass off. Head on over to Amazon and buy their album Better Days. It is sure to be your next favorite album.
~Jase Speencher, Contributing Writer for RockRevolt™ Magazine
War On The Inside Video: