Brad had a chat with Guitarist, Brandon Pagano from Handguns. Speaking about their first ever UK tour back in 2013, what their new album ‘Disenchanted’ is about and exceeding their own expectations with what they have achieved.
Hello Handguns! I first saw you guys when you played with Marmozets and Senses Fail In Norwich back in 2013, have any memories of that show/tour?
That was our very first tour in the UK/Europe and it will always hold a special place in our hearts. Senses Fail was a band that inspired us to play music and Marmozets became some our closest friends we’ve ever made on the road. I wish I could remember more of the crazy nights we had with Marmozets but I think that just means we enjoyed our time there, haha.
You have had a meteoric rise since then and I’ve got to say it has been completely deserved…consistently good releases and brilliant live performances has got you where you are today, how does it feel to reflect on what you have achieved so far?
It’s a trip to see all of your hard work pay off in the form of records you can listen back to and be proud of as well as crazy shows with our dedicated fans. I never actually thought I’d be in a band that people all over the world will come out and spend their hard earned money to see and support. We try our best to let any success we gain take a backseat to the important things, like focusing on making sure our music is as good as it can be and just hoping that people understand where we are coming from with it, but it’s hard to not be absolutely thrilled over a steady gain in listeners/fans.
‘Disenchanted’ is your new album and is scheduled for a November release so lets start with the name..why did you choose ‘Disenchanted’?
The record encompasses the idea of finding the faults of everything you’ve grown to believe in. All of the previous Handguns releases document our journey of starting as a small band working for ourselves and trying to balance life between touring and being home. This record sees us at a crossroad of sorts.
We’ve reached a point in our band’s career that we never thought we’d reach. We’re on the road more months out of the year than we’re home and we’ve learned how to balance that between our lives at home. It came to a point where we’d accomplished many of the goals we had set and it was time to start setting new ones. We wrote the record as a way to voice our frustrations with the things we put faith in that only brought us down on our crazy journey as Handguns. Being disenchanted with something is the first step to making positive changes to fall back in love with it.
How does the sound of ‘Disenchanted’ differ from 2014’s ‘Life Lessons’?
Disenchanted is faster and more aggressive than Life Lessons in my opinion. I also find the lyrics on Disenchanted following more of a streamlined theme, instead of the Life Lessons concept which found us drawing knowledge from specific snapshots in our lives. Life Lessons was our story book, Disenchanted is our manfiesto.
You have had a whole host of lineup changes throughout your time as a band, how have you survived the changes?
From Life Lessons on we’ve had the same core lineup of songwriters in the band. It’s been about 3 years now with the four of us and it’s something we don’t even think about anymore. All we want to do is put out a record that is better than our last and that attitude got us here years later and will continue to keep us doing this for as long as that passion is there.
What are your views on the Pop Punk scene currently?
There’s tons of great music coming out. Check out Light Years, Sudden Suspension, Seasons Change, Broadside, The Wonder Years, who are some poppunk bands that we’ve really been into for a while.
Can we expect to have Handguns back in the UK soon?
Hopefully as soon as possible, its honestly our favorite place to be!!
What has been the weirdest moment that has happened to Handguns?
Taylor one time left the stage in front of 1,100 people in Chicago to take a shit midset. It was legendary.
How excited are you to get the new album released?
You have no idea. It’s the best we have to offer at the moment and we hope you all enjoy it!
Now, we always end our interviews with a bit of a sillyness… so we have three quickfire questions for you now;
Katy Perry or Taylor Swift?
This is impossible, but Taylor Swift.
Best Album Ever Made?
Blink 182’s Untitled
If Handguns had to change their name and incorporate some kind of reference to The Simpsons…what name would you choose?
I have no idea, I don’t watch enough Simpsons to give you a really good answer. But I did google “Simpsons Handguns Quote” and thought this was fitting:
“This gun has made me lose everything… My family, my friends, everything but my precious, precious gun.” Homer Simpson season 9 episode 5 “The Cartridge Family”
So there we have it, our chat with Brandon from Handguns. The new album ‘Disenchanted’ is scheduled for a 13th November release and you can keep up to date with the band here.