By Brian Ossip and Mike Shomaker, DC Music Live
With the release of their latest album, Vulnerable, rock quartet The Used decided to take their career into their own hands. After spending 10 years on Reprise Records, an imprint of Warner, the band decided to leave the label, create their own Anger Music Group and release their latest record themselves.
“We don’t have to have a middleman anymore,” said Quinn Allman, guitarist for the band. “If we want to put something out, all the tools are there to do that for us. It’s kind of the new way to look at it.”
Releasing a record independently has given the band freedom to experiment and create exactly what they want. Lead singer Bert McCracken feels that this has benefitted their creative process immensely. “We’re all into tons of different types of music. It’s cool to be able to bring all those different feelings and vibes together.”
The band also chose to work with producer John Feldman, whom they had worked with on all previous albums except for their 2008 release, Artwork. “He knows how to get things out of us that we naturally do, through that relationship that we have,” said Allman. “He’ll pipe in with an idea like, ‘Do a little Quinn guitar thing here,’ and you’re like, ‘Ok, I know what you mean.’”
“He’s just a really hard worker, and he’s really willing to try anything,” added McCracken. “He’s willing to experiment. He’s family to us.”
And the reaction from fans so far has been overwhelmingly positive. “It’s been great,” said McCracken. “We’ve got a lot of hardcore fans out there. A lot of people just feel moved by it. It’s great.”
“I’ve heard a little bit of feedback like, ‘I never heard you guys before, and I loved this record.’ It’s cool.”
The band is currently out on tour in support of Vulnerable with opening acts Dead Sara (RELATED STORIES: Dead Sara Bring “Chaos” To The District) and Stars in Stereo. As part of the tour, they recently played a free show at L.A.’s famous Troubadour, in honor of the 10-year anniversary of the last free show they played there.
“[It’s a] really cool rock club. We did it for the [heck] of it. For the fans,” Said McCracken. “We did it 10 years ago and thought it’d be cool to do it again. It was really fun the first time, so why not?”
The band is no stranger to playing in D.C., recalling past shows here fondly. Allman noted that the shows are always great, adding, “D.C. fans are great, rowdy. We always expect an awesome show.”
As the band continues on their tour, it’s clear that they are enjoying their newfound freedom. Look for The Used at select locations this summer on Warped Tour and be sure to pick up a copy of Vulnerable.
For more photos from the show, head here.