I don't think a longer introduction to the great Gameface is necessary. They recently came up with their new record entitled "Four to go" which is once again classic Gameface stuff and hopefully gets the attention it deserves. A couple of years ago I did another interview with Jeff Gameface who was kind enough to answer my questions this time, too.
Hey Jeff, how are you doing? First off, congratulations. "Four to go" is once again a great piece of music from Gameface in my eyes. How have been the responses from fans as well as the media so far?
I think it's been received pretty well. Our fans really love it as do we.
As I only have a promo copy of the album I don't know who produced and where it was recorded, so please help me out on this one. How long did it take to actually create the album, I mean when did you start writing songs for it and how much time did you spend in the studio to record them?
We spent the better part of a year writing and rehearsing them. We wanted to be good and ready when we finally hit the studio. This is the most prepared we've ever been for a recording and I think it shows on the album. We recorded the record with Eric Stenman. He's been a friend of Guy's (our bass player for a while now). The past couple albums were recorded by Jim Monroe. We love working with Jim but we decided to do something different this time around. This is also our first all digital recording.
The first thing that came to my mind before I even listened to the album was that you're no longer on Revelation. Why that? And why did you move to Doghouse Records? In the past you did some EPs on labels like Firefly or Eyeball, so who came up with the idea of releasing "Four to go" on Doghouse instead of on these labels?
We like Doghouse. They are good people and a good label. Our contract with Revelation was complete so we decided to look elsewhere. Doghouse is a great fit for us.
Are you still on contact with Revelation and do you know their reaction on the new songs? When I interviewed you a couple of years back after the split EP with Errortype:11 you told me that you'd do artwork and layout stuff for Revelation, so does the fact that you switched over to Doghouse affect that in any way? Are you still creating art (apart from music) and doing the layout for other bands?
I don't work at Revelation anymore. Not due to Gameface leaving the label but due to me needing to make a good living and improve in the graphic design field. I have a great job at a great graphic design studio. We make movie posters and DVD/video packaging (http://www.amachine.com/)
"Four to go" is released in Germany by Defiance Records, so hopefully they will force you to tour here in Germany more often, haha. Why did you only play one show here this year (Cologne) and almost no shows in Germany in the last few years? I mean you were over to the UK a couple of times, so it would have been great to see you!
It would be great to have the kind of leisure time it takes to travel as much as we'd like to. At 30 years old with careers and families to look after, it's hard to plan many tours. That doesn't mean we won't be in Germany soon. It just means that I haven't given up my entire life to be a rockstar.
How did that special Cologne show turn out? Speaking about the audience at shows: Did you notice a change over the years and do you still see some of those people that came to early Gameface shows?
The Cologne show was a lot if fun. Things have certainly changed. We've been around so long, we've seen things come and go but I still see some old familiar faces in the crowd.
As far as I can figure them out (no lyric sheet for the promo) your lyrics are still very personal yet still written in a way that one can easily identify with them. At least that's how I feel when I hear your words. Would you agree? Did your way of writing lyrics change over the years in your eyes?
I agree completely. I don't know any other way to write. The only difference is just that I'm getting older. I hope that people can still connect with these songs as they have in the past.
I played your new album to some friends of mine as I always do when I'm totally into a record, and it always goes like this: "Hey, check out the new Gameface record, it's so amazing, it will blow you away!" One of my friends said that the new songs would be more back to the roots than the previous two albums, but I disagreed with him. I think "Four to go" follows its two predecessors musically, maybe it's a bit more in the vein of "Every last time" than "Always on". What do you think? I think we all can agree on the fact that you created your very own sound, right?
I think we're always pushing ahead. This album is the next step in the evolution of our band but I do agree that it has some of the same energetic spirit that some of our earlier material had. Of course, these songs are executed on a much more proficient level (which mean that we rock way harder now).
In that previous interview with you I mentioned above you told me that one of your influences would be Elvis Costello. You actually did a cover of "Every day I write the book" (on "Feels a lot better" if I am right?). Reason enough for me to listen to my old Elvis Costello best of, and I have to say that your version of "Every day..." is so much better than the original. I guess it was your idea to cover Elvis Costello, why did you choose this particular song and will you do another cover in the future (by which band)?
Covers are fun but they can be overdone. I think we've done enough covers in our time. Usually the reason why we record a cover song is when we're asked to. It's hard to say no to doing them. We're all fans of music and we want to celebrate all of our influences.
"How far is goodbye" was already on the split EP with Errortype:11, "Feels a lot better" also featured that song (at least some excerpts) and "Four to go" also contains this song. So is this track something special for you? What was the reason for you to re-record it for the new album?
It's a kick-ass jam and it didn't get the attention it deserved by only being on a split EP. We really love the song. It's a band favorite.
The Ataris said in another interview that one of their favourite movies from the 80s would be "The Goonies". Is there any special movie for yoo, too?
80's movies - The Breakfast Club, Say Anything, Pretty In Pink, Some Kind of Wonderful.
The line-up of Gameface has not seen any changes for a long time now, so do you see the other guys often when you're not on tour or recording/rehearsing?
Not much when we're not doing band stuff. Like I said, we have families and careers that keep us pretty busy. It makes the time we spend with Gameface more special.
What are the other guys doing besides Gameface?
You told me before that you are married, so what do your wife and you do when you're on tour with Gameface? Does she go on tour with you?
She goes sometimes but usually has to do the responsible thing and go to work. It's expensive to go on tour. If no one's at home making money we wouldn't have anywhere to come home to. God knows we don't make much money on tour.
I think we're at the end of this interview, do you have anything to add and what are your future plans? Thanks for taking the time answering these questions!
Thanks. Check out the new album. It's indeed our best. If you don't know who we are by now, it's time you find out.