Adventure Club Death or Glory at Avant Gardner [Exclusive Interview]

Feature Photo by Larry Try @lvrrytry

Adventure Club is currently on a long awaited tour, the Death or Glory tour. They played last Saturday, 4/20 in NYC at Avant Gardner, the new music venue that is taking the EDM scene by storm, a show put on by none other than Made Event. The last time I saw Adventure Club in NYC was five years ago at an after party at Best Buy Theater (now Playstation Theater) after Electric Zoo. It was great to see them again, at an even bigger venue and after so many years. I got to see them recently in Miami at E11even which was a super late set and took me right back to the last time I saw them in NYC.

Photo of Leighton and Christian performing in Miami at E11even on 4/1/19
Photo by: ADINAYEV @adiadinayev

Their show was accompanied by Riot Ten, ARMNHMR, Wooli, and Yakz. Based on the lineup and name of the tour, I could tell this was going to be a harder Adventure Club set than their fans are used to, and it was! They even had badXchannel come out and perform a few songs, which was a really nice touch to break up the intense energy. Riot Ten really got the crowd going before Adventure Club came out and mesmerized the crowd with their beautiful stage design, visuals, and lighting. I was lucky enough to get an interview with them before the show where Leighton gave me the inside scoop behind the set design and meaning of the tour.

Festival Squad: You both met in high school and were in a band right? How did that come about?

Leighton: We had a mutual friend. That mutual friend put up little postings on different high school walls about members wanted for a band. I was lucky enough that Christian picked up one of those little tags up with my phone number on it. He called me up one day and he said ‘Hey I’m a guitarist, I’m pretty much your guy’. He showed up at my house and Christian – he’s a big guy right now and, I think he was still a big guy back then, but the proportions were different *laughing*.

Christian: I had strangely large muscles on top and strangely no muscles on the legs. I kind of looked like Johnny Bravo — 18 year old Johnny Bravo *laughing*.

Leighton: He had 2 casseroles with him too *laughing*.

Christian: Steaks and potatoes. I was eating like 8 times a day back then and just walked around with food all of the time *laughing*.

Leighton: We walk in, we go to my parent’s basement, and I don’t think we said more than five or six words to each other…

Christian: I commanded the situation with my facial expressions *laughing*.

Leighton: He played a couple riffs on guitar, I said yeah that’s good, and I think we made our first song. We’ve been best friends ever since.

Christian: Best friends ever since.

Festival Squad: That is the most amazing story. Just recently you came out with a remix to ‘MakeDamnSure’ with my friend Modern Machines – Thank you for working with him.

Leighton: That’s my boy right there.

Festival Squad: A long time ago you came out with a remix to ‘Daisy’ by Brand New. Are you guys going to do more of this rock and roll stuff because I love it and I think your fans do too?

Christian: That’s where we came up man, we love that stuff, don’t forget that. Remember that Thrice remix?

Festival Squad: No I’ll have to check it out! Check it out here:  https://soundcloud.com/adventureclub/thrice-broken-lungs-adventure

Leighton: That’s kind of why we started Adventure Club, it was to kind of reimagine all of these songs that we loved growing up, into the EDM world.

Festival Squad: So the answer is yes, we can expect more Rock and Roll?

Christian: Yes, always.

Festival Squad: I think all of your fans are wondering when we can expect new music or a new project?

Leighton: New music came out last week!

Festival Squad: Yes with Krewella! But when can we expect more? We want more!

Christian: Now the flood gates are open.

Festival Squad: Well we have been waiting on the follow up with Krewella since 2012!

Christian: I know, we have been sitting on a lot of music and now that, you know, the oil is flowing through the pipeline if you will, a lot is coming.

Leighton: Super exclusive… We hit the studio with Yuna again.

Christian: That’s the next one to keep your eye out for.

Festival Squad: Love it, excited to hear that! Your ‘Crave You’ by Flight Facilities remix was your biggest song to date that really made you take off. You began releasing original music shortly thereafter. How did that transition happen?

Leighton: To us the remixes have always been kind of like originals.

Christian …kind of like original pieces with samples, more than remixes.

Leighton: If you listen to ‘Crave You’ our remix and then listen to the Flight Facilities version, they’re different worlds.

Christian: Or if you listen to ‘Lullabies’ or anything like that. We’ll re-arrange vocals, it’s kind of like we are using them as a sample. It’s kind of like in the hip-hop industry when someone samples something. That’s more what our remixes are like, but we were starting off with nothing to our name so, you know, when we are sampling things, we didn’t have the clout to just use it as a sample so we had to credit it as a remix.

Leighton: We can’t just be like, Yo Ellie hook us up with this *laughs*.

Christian: Yo Ellie we’re just gonna like call this song our song if you’re cool with that *laughs*.

Festival Squad: Ok I feel you! So, the whole ‘Unleash’ song and that becoming the anthem of Life In Color – How did that come about? I feel like that was a huge look for you guys.

Christian: That was cool, that was a cool project.

Leighton: Yeah we did the Life In Color circuit for a couple of years. We linked up with David who had this really cool concept for the song with Zak Waters who’s now “Pretty Sister” music. We heard the vocal, loved the vocal, loved the original idea, and decided to hop on.

Christian: And then ‘Fade’ came from that.

Leighton: Yeah ‘Fade’ came from that.

Festival Squad: Cool! Are you excited to play at Avant Gardner? What have you heard about the venue?

Christian: Looks fantastic!

Leighton: I know this venue is fairly new maybe like two years old?

Festival Squad: Yeah it is actually one of the biggest venues in the country capacity wise because there are three rooms. You’ll have to come back in the summer and play in the summer room it’s incredible.

Leighton: Yeah this is one of the shows we were looking forward to the most. The venue is super sick and the crowd looks incredible.

Festival Squad: Sold out too!

Leighton: Sold out yeah!

Festival Squad: Amazing. I’ve seen some videos of the stage visuals and set design. Do you help to collaborate on that or outsource it?

Christian: Oh absolutely.

Leighton: Yeah we come up with the idea boards, it is conceptualized from something called Valhalla which is Norse mythology. That’s pretty much the idea behind Valhalla and Death or Glory. More information on Valhalla here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valhalla

Festival Squad: What inspires you to make music? What are your biggest inspirations?

Christian: Inspirations as far as other musicians or just where does the drive come from?

Festival Squad: In general like what drives you everyday when you wake up?

Christian: I think that’s kind of just like your purpose as a creative type, I think that kind of just IS your drive. I’ve always, from being a kid until now, you know everyday I wake up and just have that passion and that urge to create something. You know, you pull inspirations from the things and mediums and experiences that you love and that are meaningful to you in your life and you kind of translate that into your own art and creativity. It’s kind of just a pull, you know it’s a call.

Festival Squad:Calling All Heroes!

Christian: *laughs*

Leighton: I really admire that you’re reading all your questions upsidown *laughs*.

Festival Squad: Thanks I’m trying! Ok, so what is your favorite show that you’ve ever done?

Christian: Ever?

Leighton: Coachella.

Christian: Yeah Coachella, was a fun one.

Leighton: Coachella is hands down one of the most spiritual, most rewarding festivals that we have ever played. Yuna came out, we had Kite String Tangle come out, we had Krewella come out… Probably one of the biggest crowds we’ve ever played in front of too.

Festival Squad: Yeah I feel like everyone makes Coachella their biggest most epic show from the guest performers to the set design. 

Leighton: Yeah and we also closed the Sahara tent which was just a dream come true for us.

Festival Squad: Awesome. So my last question is where do you see Adventure Club in 5 years?

Leighton: Country act.

Christian & Leighton: Crossover country act.

Christian: Full Nashville *laughs*.

Festival Squad: Are you serious?

Leighton: You never know.

Christian: Maybe ten years *laughs*.

Leighton: Dan + Shay you better watch out *laughs*.

Festival Squad: Ok, we’ll watch out for that *laughs*.

Talking with Adventure Club was really easy, both of the guys are extremely laid back, funny, and welcoming. The show was one for the books, buy tickets for the next show in your area here http://deathorglorytour.com/

Photo of Christian and Leighton performing during the Death or Glory Tour at Avant Gardner on 4/20/19
Photo by Larry Try @lvrrytry

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