The Successful Failures – Wrong Together

Solid, energetic, varied, powerful and beautiful are all words that can be used to describe ‘Wrong Together’, the 10th album from The Successful Failures.

Mick Chorba explains.

Every time I listen to a new record of yours I think ‘they know exactly what they want and what kind of band they want to be’. Is that true?

We fooled you! Haha. Just kidding. We know that we want to be a band that is true to their craft. We respect the craft. We try to avoid pretension. We try to be honest with what we are saying and we try to keep it simple! We work hard and we play hard!

What’s the nicest compliment you’ve received so far about Wrong Together?

My mom texted me that she “loves the CD”. She said my voice sounds “really good”. She also said that “the songs are all great” and that she likes “Blue October” best. My mom knows music and it’s cool because “Blue October” is my favorite song too. A friend of ours who has a radio show in North Carolina commented on how much he likes the closing track, “Flying Cowboys” and how he thought it was a good move to close with a rocker rather than the folky “Learning What It Is To Be Free”. I agree and credit Ron Bechamps, bass/mandolin, on the track sequencing which I think is really key with this album.

On Wrong Together I hear Power Pop, Country, Alternative Rock, Hard Rock, Pop/Rock… Is it complicated that people care about the amount of styles you play?

I think that might be getting a bit overplayed, but I could be wrong. We do cover a wide range but to me it still sounds like us. Maybe it does complicate things since people don’t know what box to put us in, but I’m thinking I’d rather not be in a box, know what I mean? This is a calculated decision and I take it from The Replacements – specifically their “Let It Be” album which is mostly punky indie-rock but there is a piano ballad, a KISS cover, and an almost-instrumental in which the only words are “See Your Video!”, then 2 heartbreaking guitar almost-ballads in “Unsatisfied” and “Sixteen Blue”. And of course the album opens with a great powerpop song with “I Will Dare”. Anyway back to Wrong Together–for this album we did bring in a different producer, Travis Harrison, who works with Guided By Voices and I think he gave it a little different sound that unifies the songs. We gave up a little control there and I think it paid off.

Wrong Together has been out for a few weeks now. Perhaps enough to be able to take some distance to answer the question of how important this record is to you?

This ranks high on my importance scale. I’m thinking it will play well live. And I’m hoping we build our following a bit, meet some new people, play some new places. It’s encouraging that Sirius XM radio shows on the Underground Garage have been playing “Millions of People”. I don’t know, we’ll see what happens. But I just feel lucky to be in the situation to continue to be able to make new music. I’m writing songs for our next project now!

How does it work, being a member of The Successful Failures?

It’s fun. Pretty much a lot of fun. I recommend it! I’m lucky that Ron, Rob, and Pete are pretty much on board and enthusiastic about whatever I throw their way. We all do our homework and take the band seriously. When you ask “how does it work” not sure if you mean the song-creation-process but if so here it is in a nutshell… I write the songs on a guitar or piano. I record some rough demos and send them to the guys. At rehearsal we hash out the songs. Each person comes up with their own parts. Some songs instantly sound right while others take time and go through significant changes. We all enjoy the creative process. Not sure if you saw that Beatles documentary on the “Get Back” sessions….but our system isn’t too far off from the way those songs were presented and worked on, though we haven’t played our songs on a rooftop in London. Yet!

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