Night Birds Mutiny At Muscle Beach on LP + Download
Night Birds' third album and Fat Wreck Chords debut, Mutiny At Muscle Beach is an ADD-addled, surf-influenced, punk-rock adventure through frontman Brian Gorsegner & Co.'s experiences dealing with the rampant assholery they encounter in their day-to-day lives in suburban New Jersey and the surrounding areas. "I work in customer service, which is what fuels the majority of my hatred and my need for punk rock," the 31-year-old singer explains. "The people I deal with on a daily basis completely destroy any hope I had for humanity. But it's good; everybody needs fuel for their creativity."
While there might not be any songs on Mutiny At Muscle Beach about specific customer-service experiences, the album is chock-full of pop-culture references, from Kids In The Hall to horror movies to Seinfeld to professional wrestling – the latter of which Gorsegner says he didn't know much about (he says his bandmates are far more knowledgeable on the topic), but after watching a documentary about now-retired WWE wrestler Mick Foley, he quickly connected with the artform.
"This guy just destroys himself for his craft," Gorsegner admits. "He doesn't think about 10 years down the road, he just thinks about now, and he does what he loves to do because he's passionate about it. He likes to put a smile on peoples' faces and go out and destroy himself and be reckless – and a lot of punk rock that I love is the same kind of way. You don't think about, ‘I shouldn't do this because I might get hurt' or ‘I shouldn't write this because I might offend somebody.'"
While Night Birds makes sure to bring that level of chaos to their live show, in the studio, it's an entirely different story. The quartet always records analog, which forces each band member to be as proficient as possible to avoid expensive re-takes. "All the new digital technology is cool, but shit like that is all part of the experience," he says. "If you fuck something up, you have to do it again. We have to play everything. I'm fortunate enough to play with three of my favorite musicians who are all great players. It's a challenge we're always up to. We're never gonna have that one song we can't play live because we cheated in the studio."
Just like its predecessor, Born To Die In Suburbia, Mutiny At Muscle Beach was recorded at engineer Mitch Rackin's Seaside Lounge Recording Studio in Brooklyn – but for the first time in their career, Night Birds used a producer, recruiting former Doc Hopper frontman Chris Pierce, who has previously worked with the Ergs, the Measure [SA] and others. "We had never worked with a producer before because frankly, we're obnoxious and we know what we want and we think that we're right most of the time," Gorsegner says. "So we really had to trust somebody to let them tell us, ‘Hey do this' or ‘Don't do that.' I couldn't have been happier with how the whole process went."