The Maine talk new album, 8123 records, future plans

By Rachel A.G. Gilman

Via Rachel A.G. Gilman for WSN
Via Rachel A.G. Gilman for WSN

Before The Maine played Gramercy Theatre on Oct. 23, a show that is a part of The Maine’s tour, which is a final farewell to their 2013 album, “Forever Halloween,” front man John O’Callaghan, clad in all black with his bleached-blonde hair tied in a bun, and guitarist Jared Monaco, dressed in denim, took the time to sit down with WSN.

Earlier, The Maine spent their summer on the Vans’ Warped Tour, five years after first headlining. The big difference was the band didn’t get “hung up on the politics of what the tour is and what the tour can contain,” O’Callaghan said.

Monaco added, “Just like any other scenario with a bunch of different people in one place, you can position yourself to have a great time.” The band did and was able to both make and keep friends.

On playing New York, O’Callaghan said, “I’ve grown to really, really enjoy the city.”

He continued, “When we started out it was really stressful, parking and getting acclimated…now, I love this place.”

Monaco noted that despite having played “twenty plus” shows in New York, he’s never really been able to play tourist.

Though The Maine have enjoyed their journey over the past 16 months promoting “Forever Halloween,” they’re ready to begin again.

“I think each album that we’ve created and promoted and then moved on from has been kind of the same,” O’Callaghan said.

“You get to a zone where it’s kind of comfortable and it feels …warm… it’s the anxiety of the future and the unknown and the uncertainty of what’s to come, [it] kind of makes you want to hold onto what you have at the moment as tightly as possible…We’re very anxious to get into the studio. You go through a crisis of, ‘how did I write those songs and how am I going to write new songs’ and we’re at that point right now.”

Monaco said his favorite part of the process is “getting to know what [their] album feels like on stage.”

“We have a month in a house that we rented in Palm Springs,” O’Callaghan explained, concerning what’s next for The Maine.

“I think what’s different about this [record] is that people will be aware that we’re in the studio…We’re really going to take our time…and make sure that it’s exactly what we want to put out…a sound that we’re comfortable with.”

As to what that is, O’Callaghan added they want “to convey and portray an idea of optimism and positivity with the new stuff, [something] less ominous, less dark.”

This will be The Maine’s third project with 8123 records. “What’s special about the dynamic at 8123,” O’Callghan said, “is that we have room for spontaneity…we can record a song with anybody and turn around and put it up online once it’s finished.”

Before heading back into the studio, The Maine will be playing a Halloween show in Chicago where they’ll be dressing up. “It’s a fun show to goof off on. It’s fun to be a kid because we’re all kids,” O’Callaghan said. “It should be a great time.”

Rachel A.G. Gilman is a staff writer. Email her at


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