INVISIBLE AIRWAVES Issue #051 - Dropout Kings . Max Tolkoff - Page 22

of music that talk about inner and outer struggles. I was always listening to both types of music and wanted to be in a band like this. When I met Bill, it naturally came together, which was cool. But Bill was really strictly into Hip Hop, so when we started the band together, I had to fill him in on like 10 or 12 years of Metal scene history. <laughs> But he did a lot of that for me too on the Hip Hop side of things, even though I was pretty up to speed, he had a way deeper knowledge of it. It's been cool. We've been learning stuff together.

MP: You once told me that stealing your aunt's Linkin Park CDs, and other music she had, influenced you. Here's an interesting question. Do you think you would've been that adventurous had she just had a Spotify account and was streaming music? Or was being able to see that artwork and read the lyrics what drew you in?

AR: That's a good question. I honestly wanna say I probably wouldn't have. I feel like having the CD physically in my hands, wanting to look at the artwork and read all the lyrics was much easier to say, "I've never heard this before. This looks cool. I'm gonna throw this on and listen." That's an interesting parallel I've never

really thought about.

MP: I used to spend hours at the record store flipping through the vinyl, checking out the covers and the back of the album liner notes, if they were there, and definitely bought things based on looks before hearing the music. Some of that is missing with the way streaming has taken over. It's a little different from somebody sending you a link and saying, "Hey, listen to this."

AR: That is true. It's much less immersive.

MP: Back to current day. What's to follow after the new song? Do you have a full album ready?

AR: Yes. We have a full album coming. It's called Riot Music. We have one more single that we're going to put out after "Lights Out." It feels like we've been working forever on this album, so I'm excited to get it out. I feel like it's a good natural progression of what we've been doing. I feel like we've gotten the dynamics on lock and I'm excited to show all these tracks to everybody. It's definitely a new chapter for us and what we're doing. There's some pretty rowdy stuff on there and it's more of what we want to be. We're still a really young band trying to figure out what direction we want to take it. And I feel we really did that with this album. I'm very excited to see how people feel about it. There's a little something for everyone. It's a good mix and we like having a mixed bag type of record. MP: Who handles lyrics for the band? Bill and I both write pretty much everything. On occasion, our producer or someone else in the band will suggest something, but 95 percent of everything is me and Bill. MP: You mentioned you're still finding your way musically, but how do you feel you're coming together on a band level? AR: It’s been great. Having life experiences together and being together on the road, we've all been through a lot together. That plays a huge part in knowing each other and how we think. Bill and I have always had a very interesting dynamic. We really clicked from day one. It is crazy to see how all of this has unfolded. We definitely know each other very well now and how to accentuate the good and great parts of us. We've really come into our own lately, especially after the pandemic.