Before The Rocket Summer’s show at El Corazon tonight, frontman Bryce Avary and I talked about Nickelodeon’s Double Dare, power pop, and the limits of uplifting power pop.
SW: I have to ask about a photo on your website. Were you on Double Dare ?
Avary: Yeah, I was. I was eight or nine, and I was in Orlando with my family. This lady was like “We’re taking auditions for Double Dare.” Me and my brother, that was our life. She said “Make up a song,” so I wrote a rap about how my family was as cool as ice, and I did the splits. They were like “Wow, we’re definitely putting this guy on the show,” [laughs].
We won, but we didn’t answer a single question right. It’s the most screwed up thing. We kept getting the physical challenges and would win those. Unfortunately, I think it’s somewhere online. It gives our fans something else they can make fun of me for.
Do you find the label “uplifting power pop” limiting?
Yeah, I find any label limiting. I’m really blessed to have been touring and putting out records for 10 years but as an artist, you grow and your tastes change. I think a majority of my singles have been some of the poppy, happier songs. If you just know the band on a peripheral level, you might think that it’s this power pop thing but it’s definitely not.
This may sound super sappy, but I put every bit of me into it. I think our fans really understand it. It’s, most of the time, hundreds of people singing every word, and it’s mind-blowing. At the end of the day, I don’t want to take any credit for that. I think music is a really spiritual thing, and I think it’s one of God’s greatest creations.
You wrote “Escape and discovery is the goal” on Facebook. Can you explain that?
We all have issues and life can get really tough. Music is powerful and each night on this tour, I want people to leave having the sense that they escaped for a minute but also discovery because one of my favorite quotes is “Discovery is not seeking new landscapes, it’s seeing with brand new eyes.” And the goal is to see with brand new eyes, to see yourself the way you’re supposed so see yourself…Building that up makes it sound like there’s some preachy moment, which there’s not. It’s just this overwhelming sense of life at the shows.