Season 1 - Ep. 9 - Talking with The Punk Rock Veterans Behind The Best New Band of 2021 URETHANE
In this episode, I have the privilege of speaking with the band URETHANE about how the four punk rock veterans (Tim Fennelly, Steve Caballero, Chad Ruiz and Dylan Wade) came together bonded over coffee, ramen and Steve's own juice to create the best new band of 2021.
We talk about their new album Chasing Horizons, their music, the videos, but also a lot of great conversation about punk music in general, and I had to come clean about my hesitancy to listen to their band as I thought Steve might be using the name to pump the band up without merit. Boy, what a shmuck I am. The music speaks for itself and rocks as hard as any punk album that has come out in the last decade.
Intro Music: "Colorado" by Birds Love Filters
URETHANE on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/59UNK6T1d6IOEty9OOdmhw
URETHANE on YouTube Music: https://music.youtube.com/channel/UCFn0oP0HP6-hn0KvD-edmVw
URETHANE on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/urethane_music/
URETHANE on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/urethanepunk/
URETHANE's Video for "Gravity": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfXnT9hdOYk
URETHANE's Video for "Wyoming": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F22tuaiOGug
URETHANE on Cyber Tracks: http://www.cyber-tracks.com/artists/urethane/
Our Album Review for Chasing Horizons
Isaac Kuhlman 0:00
Hey and welcome to the Powered By Rock Podcast where we're gonna be speaking with Tim Fennelly and the rest of the Urethane guys who are just an awesome punk rock band out of California. They bring up tempo punk rock and basically rock it up to 11.
You're listening to the Powered By Rock Podcast with your host Isaac Kuhlman, the Powered By Rock Podcast was created to help showcase some of the best rock musicians in the world and the past on the future generations the rock music that has inspired rock fans around the world for decades. We want listeners to be able to hear great stories and life experiences directly from their favorite artists, as well as dig deeper into music theory and talk rock like no other show you've ever heard. This isn't about looking cool. It's about getting real and having a great time. Without further ado, let's start the show
Alright, hey, everybody, welcome to the Powered By Rock Podcast. Super excited to be joined by what looks like the workout crew of Urethane.
Tim Fennelly 1:04
Oh, sorry. Trying to get some reps in.
Isaac Kuhlman 1:08
Taking a little nap, getting some energy, whatever they're doing back there. But, you know, I'm absolutely pumped to have you guys on the show. Because I think the debut album that you guys have Chasing Horizons is an absolutely incredible breath of fresh air. And it's one of the best albums of the year, not just punk albums. It's one of the best albums. It's actually my highest rated album by any new band of the year as well. So welcome to the show, guys.
Awesome. Thank you so much. Great.
Isaac Kuhlman 1:34
So I think a lot of people probably in this I'm going to be honest about what I first heard when when I first heard of you guys, I think a lot of people obviously know Steve, Steve Caballero, from skateboarding fame, obviously been in punk bands for years. I didn't even know that until recently. I was like, Oh, I didn't even know he played music. But great to have you here, Steve as well. But I think that's kind of what probably brings a lot of the initial attraction to the band is Steve's name. But that's why I kind of hesitated at first to listen to him because I was like, maybe this is just like using his name and it doesn't hold up. But I thought, you know, what do I have to lose by listening to the album? I mean, I listen to a lot of shitty bands in the year. So I was like, Well, let me get a shot. I'm actually super glad I did because the album was truly friggin rocking. So what do you say to somebody who has potentially a broken brain like I did?
Tim Fennelly 2:25
I mean, that's kind of up to the individual. But I like to listen to anything and everything. So I don't know. That's a That's a tough one.
Isaac Kuhlman 2:36
Yeah. Steve, did you did you have any insight of like, why I was like, hesitant to listen to a band that you would be involved in by any chance? I mean, I feel like an idiot now. But I'm like, Yeah, you guys friggin rock. Okay, you
Steve Caballero 2:50
know, I? Yeah, that's that's happened over the years and stuff, you know, a, definitely a name helps carry things. Sometimes, you know, I would like the music to carry itself and have like, I don't like my name being promoted on on flyers all the time. You know, if it's a skate, if it has a skate related thing, then yeah, sure. But if it's just kind of like a punk show, I'd rather just have the band's name on there. And it gets kind of annoying. I'm just like, you know, focusing on on my presence, you know, when it's a group effort,
Isaac Kuhlman 3:24
Yeah exactly, that's I think that's kind of why I was resistant, because every single thing was Steve Cabellero. And Tim or Steve Cabellero. And whoever else, or just Steve Cabellero talks about Urethane and like, like, that's kind of it's the promo, promo stuff, the buzz about it, that kind of, it's kind of like overinflated, I think but, you know, I'm super excited to hear you say that, because, you know, the band music does speak for itself in this case, and, you know, I'm not gonna be promoting it. You know, Steve Cabellero and Urethane. It's going to be Urethane as the episode because you guys, I mean, as a cohesive unit, have put out an absolutely epic album. You know, I kind of I actually went over and listened to the Toby Morse podcast that he guys that you guys actually joined last month, I believe, to kind of get a little bit more backstory, because there's not a lot of history of the band, because the band is only relatively new. I mean, it's what like a year old now or less than a year old. But can you guys give kind of a synopsis of how the group came together and why you guys decided to kind of band this group together when you guys were all in musical projects elsewhere.
Tim Fennelly 4:30
Because I know you've done this like 1000 times. Yeah. So during the pandemic, I was playing in a band called war fever, and shows basically shut down so I kind of used that time to just like dust off the songbook and see what I was working on at the time. And just finished up a couple of songs. I didn't have any thing in mind like as far as a project I was just trying to keep busy and keep my keep juices flowing. And I reached out to a friend of mine, Jeff what's his last name?
Isaac Kuhlman 5:09
my friend, Jeff, best friend,
Tim Fennelly 5:12
That guy. And so he owns a studio called Double Time, and he plays drums. So I asked him if he was available to just work on song record, and I had no idea what what was gonna happen with those, it was just for fun. And so he helped me record five songs. And then it was kind of I had never sang or actually really composed or arranged music in in the way that it is, you know, in Urethane. So it was kind of just like an experiment. And I really enjoyed doing it. And I really liked music. So I was like, I'm just going to put it out and under, like, some pseudonym, and have it on Spotify, and whatever, and just move on, and hopefully, shows we're going to come back and I was going to get back to normal but so I had it all slated to, to release. And I was on Instagram, and I saw that Steve had posted. Steve was in a band. I didn't know that at the time. And he they were looking for a singer. And I'm in Carlsbad I know that Steve's in Carlsbad, so I was just like, I'm just gonna it was a really like, a spontaneous thing. I was just like, I'll send him some of the songs that I just finished and just, you know, he probably won't answer me, but why not? So, you know, sure enough, like, the next day, or the day after that he got back to me, and he said he liked the music. And I was really surprised. And really stoked. And so we connected. And we met up and we talked about stuff, and he played some tracks of his new band and, and he was like, I'll, I'll see what these guys think about your voice. But you know, I think we both kind of knew like, it wasn't like a good fit. But and then sure enough, he went to his band, and they're like, nah, so we met up again, shortly after that, and, and he was like, you know, we should start something. And I was like, really surprised that he was going to leave his band and we were going to do something and that's that's kind of what happened. And I cold called Dylan out of nowhere. I actually asked some other guy that I don't know, on social media, who I know lives in North County. And I asked him if he knew of any drummers. I know this guy's like It tastes and music and stuff. And he he's like, yeah, he pointed me towards Dylan. So I messaged Dylan. I don't know where it was like, Hey, I'm doing this thing. Steve Caballero you wanna join? And never heard him play? I mean, I know that he was in The Bombpops And so yeah, that must be good. Right? So
Isaac Kuhlman 8:12
the bomb pops. I just have to listen to music. But yeah. Dylan, you want to come play with us?
Tim Fennelly 8:17
And so yeah, we Dylan joined us. And we were a three piece for a while, we were just playing in Steve's bedroom and just like figuring out the songs together, and. And then, shortly after that form, we Steve calls me up one day, and he says, hey, I want to play guitar. And it was kind of
Isaac Kuhlman 8:41
He was playing bass originally, right?
Tim Fennelly 8:43
Yeah, he was playing bass. Because Chad over here was we were talking during that time, and Chad was interested in getting involved. And he wanted to play guitar. I was like, you know, we kind of just started like, let's, let's see how it goes. So when Steve said that he wanted to play guitar, I was like, Well, I know a guy that plays bass because Chad's really good bass player.
Isaac Kuhlman 9:12
He came from War Fever with you as well, right? Yeah. And
Tim Fennelly 9:15
Yeah, and he played...He was in Skipjack for 100 years. Yeah. So as soon as we got together, it was just a really good chemistry, we'll get fit. And that's where we are right now.
Isaac Kuhlman 9:31
Nice. So basically, you just said, Hey, I don't know any of you guys. But you got to work with me then. Hey, Chad, you want to come? Yeah.
Tim Fennelly 9:37
And it was in it's one of those things that like, certain doors open and things are really easy. It's a good sign, you know, when you when you're fighting against things and and you can kind of tell that it's not going to work, but this project has been really easy and we all connect really well. And we're all like musically on the same page. Yeah. So it's just a lot of fun.
Isaac Kuhlman 10:03
Yeah. And when you are referencing the recordings of the stuff that you're doing was that the Johnny Cuz slash Tim Frog EP that you were doing or was that something else that you were actually putting together?
Tim Fennelly 10:12
That? Um, yeah, that was just for kicks me and Johnny decided to do an acoustic record. But yeah, years ago, yeah. Yeah.
Isaac Kuhlman 10:26
Cool. So it was actually something else and then kind of what became some of the songs for Urethane. I take it.
Tim Fennelly 10:31
Yes. Yeah. I took Avalanches with me on that one.
Isaac Kuhlman 10:35
Yeah. And brought up Toby Morse from H2O. So yes, that was pretty cool. So
Tim Fennelly 10:41
that was interesting. We were super lucky to have those those guest spots. Joe Giblin Berg joined us on another song.
Isaac Kuhlman 10:50
Yeah. Do you want to talk about that in just a second? Because I kind of got some some kind of pre pre work for that those questions. But I do want to kind of, kind of get some more information from you guys about, you know, what, like this momentum has been because you guys have been pretty much on a frantic pace since you guys started working together. I mean, it's been what do you guys actually get together was like earlier this year or late last year?
Dylan Wade 11:16
end of January? And is really going on
Steve Caballero 11:20
Dylan Wade 11:21
Yeah, September 24. For the three of us. But once the four pieces together is the end of January this last year?
Isaac Kuhlman 11:26
Wow. So I mean, in that time, you guys have played multiple shows. I know you guys did punk rock bowling. You guys are actually doing a you guys did a food drive thing as well. I saw that. And then guys are doing put up a Soma? Is it the Soma Fest or something like that? That you
Tim Fennelly 11:41
guys? Yeah, we're playing with Pennywise and Strung Out and The Deviants at Soma. November 5. Yeah. And the Punk Rock Food Drive is on the 12th in Oceanside.
Isaac Kuhlman 11:53
Yeah, both I mean, that Soma thing that in the lab is just incredible. So it's, I mean, you guys getting on these stages, obviously, you guys have been around music for, you know, decades each probably. And you guys are just using the connections and making things happen. And I did. I did hear that thing from the Toby Morse podcast where you guys said that? You know, a lot of it's your booking agent. So credit to him, because he's he's definitely got you guys on the right track, I think. But yeah.
Tim Fennelly 12:22
Well, that we got a good team going.
Isaac Kuhlman 12:24
Yeah, that's fantastic. So I do want to ask, like, when did you guys think like, Hey, man, this is like actually something worthwhile? I mean, obviously, Steve and you kind of were working a little bit by yourself. But did you ever have any hesitancy or reluctance to like, make this move forward? Because you guys had had established bands before that? And what was it just like, immediately, that you were like, Let's get sunk in. And let's just do this and go full throttle on it.
Tim Fennelly 12:52
For me, it was immediately something I wanted to do. I knew it was the right fit, and I wanted to go forward with it.
Dylan Wade 12:58
And for me, it was a similar thing to it, you know, you get a lot of commonly spoke about shitty bands, there's a lot of them out there. And Tim sent me, it was like, Alright, I'm into this right away. Like, there, there was a quick there was something that drew me to it right away. So playing with the guys just fit really easily. Nice.
Steve Caballero 13:17
I think the connection is that we we all have kind of the same tastes and music. We're all have a professional sense business sense in mind. So we actually are serious when we play. Um, I was in that previous band for a year, looking for a singer finally reached out to Tim fell in love with his, his music and his voice. And when those guys said, No, that was that was a fork in the road for me. And it made me realize a decision I had to make, which was give up a year's worth of work and and dedicate everything to Tim, you know, and so when asking, When did I think it was a for sure thing? It was when I first heard his demo tape. I said this, this is a for sure thing, because, you know, I know when it comes to bands, the singer makes or breaks you. Yeah. You know, it doesn't matter how good of a player you are drummer bass player guitarist if the singer sucks the band sucks.
Isaac Kuhlman 14:19
Yeah, that's pretty high praise for you, Tim. Because Tim just said he wasn't singing in bands before that, right? Like, no playing guitar.
Tim Fennelly 14:28
And and it's funny because everything I sent them was all studio audio auto tune. So when we got into into the studio together, I was like, oh, man, the wheels are going to come off, but we're still here.
Isaac Kuhlman 14:43
That's awesome. So yeah, speaking of that musical influence in that musical taste that you guys have I mean, you know, I kind of think you guys are sound is like late 90s, early 2000s pop punk is which what I grew up on. I mean, I know you guys are maybe slightly older than me but not like you know Full generation ahead of me or anything. And that's a little bit different than maybe some of the projects you some of you guys have had The Bombpops obviously kind of like that pop punk sound as well. But you know War Fever is a little bit more hardcore punk. I think this sound especially because you know it's it's your it's your vocal abilities Tim and just kind of the driving lyrical parts of it. It's a lot of like Alkaline Trio mix with Unwritten Law mix, it's like Face to Face a lot of that, you know, and you'd actually mentioned that Matt Skiba was one of your influences in your writing. So is that kind of on the right path is that kind of like some of those musical influences that you guys had as you were kind of coming together?
Tim Fennelly 15:40
Most definitely. I think the thing that, that that kind of happened during the pandemic was that I was writing songs with with no real goal in mind, they were just like, really honest songs. So when, when they were finished, it was something that that I was really into, because it was honest. And that's when I knew I wanted to keep going on this path. Because that's, that's the music I like to write. And that's the music I like to sing. And that's music I want to share. Like, I love playing hardcore stuff. It's fun. Yeah,
Isaac Kuhlman 16:20
it's a lot of energy.
Tim Fennelly 16:21
This is this, like, means a lot more to me to be in this band, and to to be writing these kinds of songs.
Isaac Kuhlman 16:32
Yeah. Well, let me ask you personally, Tim, because obviously, I don't know how old you are. But you got to be I'm almost 40. So you got to be around my age. How does it feel to finally finally get that in your band and like the musical kind of, you know, it like that, that inner kind of peace or whatever you want to call it? That this, you know, at this stage in your career when you might have passed this up before and just, you know, I mean, even Dave Grohl from the Foo Fighters played drums for Nirvana, right, then became a lead man of the Foo Fighters, which changed his trajectory for his musical career forevermore, because you get it done the same thing as Christ Novoselic and just played bass in other bands. Right? So you could have just done the same thing, but kind of chose to change your path? And how does that kind of what does that mean to you? Like, on that trajectory for yourself?
Tim Fennelly 17:16
Um, you know, like, the pandemic sucked for a lot of reasons, but it was great for a lot of reasons, too. And this is one of them, because I don't know if I would have done this. Had that not happened? Yeah. Those, I think those, you know, those songs would have just, I don't know, it's hard to say, but um, yeah, I What was the question?
Isaac Kuhlman 17:45
There's mostly just about how's it feel like kind of at this stage in your life to kind of finally kind of realize that, that dream or that, that newfound spirit that you have by being a frontman versus just playing guitar
Tim Fennelly 17:59
yeah, so now I'm collecting Social Security and, and
Isaac Kuhlman 18:04
my 28 years old, obviously,
Tim Fennelly 18:07
So it's working out, you know? Now, it's, it's amazing. I just feel super lucky and, and blessed, or whatever you want to say, but this is, this is, uh, this is where I've always wanted to be musically, I think. Yeah. So it's very rewarding at this point.
Isaac Kuhlman 18:26
Yeah. So I mean, were you guys did you guys? Like, I'm sure you probably have, like, you obviously, with that demo that you kind of had Steve and then dealing listen to you kind of set the, the tone of the band? Did you guys consciously, like immediately just say, this is the type of music we're gonna play? And like, or did you kind of want to mix things up? Or did you have any, like, inner tension about like, how some of the songs should go at all when you were kind of putting this stuff together?
Tim Fennelly 18:52
No, there wasn't like a, like a blueprint laid out. I think we all just, we kind of started playing the music together. And, you know, after those five songs, we just, like, came together with ideas. And the other there was, there was never like, we're gonna set out to do this specific thing. We just, we just kind of figured it out. Like without talking about it.
Isaac Kuhlman 19:22
Nice. Awesome. That's my
Steve Caballero 19:25
Yeah. And also, like, the writing didn't stop. We actually wrote what I for me personally, I wrote all these like, guitar lines in the studio that weren't we I never even practiced. Because, you know, when we were recording, each guy would do their thing and we're kind of bored. You know, so I'm like, I'm just gonna pick up this acoustic guitar and start fiddling around with it. While, you know, either Chad's lane is track or, you know, Tim's right lane and rhythm tracks. And I came up with a lot of different like melody, melodies to add to my palying, which changed the whole dynamic, I think of every single song that we played. So when we were done recording, I resorted back to what I what I was practicing forehand, cuz I didn't even know what I played. Yeah, I played it the day that we recorded. So it just, it just kind of worked. And it just enhanced the song a little bit better. So like I said, even up to recording, we were still writing in the studio as well.
Isaac Kuhlman 20:35
Yeah, well, that's good way to keep the keep the money well spent in the time in the studio, right. So just keep doing what you got to do.
Chad Ruiz 20:41
Yeah, and even with those five songs that Tim originally started with, you could listen to any song on that record, or I'm sure after a while a lot of people will be able to pinpoint in certain spots, but like to add on to what Steve was saying. I can hear. I can hear each person in the band's feel on each song like I can, I can hear it stands out to me where like Steve has his feel on there. He added Steve's signature field. And the same thing with Dylan's fills like his changes from like a chorus to a big bridge or something. It's not how it was on the record. It's what it's like his signature thing that's on there. And then a lot of the bass stuff that I'm doing, if you were to turn off all the tracks and just listen to just the little simple fills that are in there. They're all hardcore fills the same I would have done in my hardcore game.
Isaac Kuhlman 21:37
Yeah. Which is cool, because you can take those different styles put it together, and it still has the overall feel of a pop punk band. But each individual element might sound totally different if it was on its own. Yeah,
Chad Ruiz 21:48
it has every one of us on there equally for sure. You can hear everybody's two cents on this one, which is pretty awesome.
Isaac Kuhlman 21:56
Yeah. So I know like you guys, obviously, worked with El Hefe from no effects in his studio and with Gen. cybertracker. That's the guys. That's the label you guys are on. So you, you know, you worked in that studio you recorded there? Did you get any special treatment from them at all? While you were there? Or did you just like get to work and get it get on this thing? Guys, we need this thing pumped out in the next week.
Tim Fennelly 22:20
We actually recorded with Cameron Webb at Maple Sound Studios.
Isaac Kuhlman 22:26
Tim Fennelly 22:26
Yeah. Our label is Cyber Tracks, which is Jen and Hefe.
Steve Caballero 22:32
But they never showed up to any recording.
Tim Fennelly 22:36
We never even
Steve Caballero 22:37
there, they're the silent partner.
Isaac Kuhlman 22:41
Good to know,
Dylan Wade 22:42
we got whipped into shape by Cameron. You know, we we've all been in these situations before. But I think all of us were a little unprepared for what we were getting into with Cameron. But it was one of the best routes that we could have taken with this because his input on on our songs and our structures and everything like that. Really just added that extra level. And you know, as Chad said, We all brought our own pieces to it. But having Cameron kind of helped guide us along in that was was instrumental in the end result. And I mean, I never worked harder in the studio and gotten more out of two or three days of work and music than I did. For the two days that I spent playing, getting my stuff done. So, you know, I wouldn't say we got special treatment in any way because he didn't let us slide with things at all, so, so we definitely were put through the wringer and put through the work. But he was also one of the most patient, caring people that we could have had involved with this. So while he worked us really hard, it came from a really good place. And again, that's why the end result is what it is.
Isaac Kuhlman 23:53
Yeah. And he's worked with tons of you know, punk band, famous punk bands and stuff so
Chad Ruiz 23:58
amazing that and another test, like another testament to Cameron is that he didn't go about changing what we set out to do. He more or less showed us that we had these tools all along that we might not have paid close attention to the things that we already had. You know, like, Steve, Steve has never sang like this before. And he's he's 90 94% Of all the harmonies and all the backups that you hear on the record. It's neat. And he's never played that role before but he's like, he he shows Steve that like you know, I don't have to change who you are. You have these tools. Let's see what they sound like. Yeah.
Isaac Kuhlman 24:41
That's awesome. Because like on those choruses where you play melodies sounds great when
Steve Caballero 24:47
they would come to us while we're in the studio, and plus, like Cameron is a perfectionist. So he would let you know if it didn't sound right. You know, and I never had a producer actually tell him Then I bent the note you got to play that over again. You know, he's got such a great ear for the highs and the lows and with your out of tune, you know, and so he really, he really did work us. And I felt bad for each person doing their part because he had to do it over and over and over again til it was perfect. So
Isaac Kuhlman 25:22
but then you're gonna sit there and play in the background while they're doing that. Right.
Steve Caballero 25:24
Yeah, fiddling around. But yeah, so the end result is an amazing result. And we trusted Cameron, just by the work that he's produced, you know, so it was just a great team, you know, everyone is just gets along really well. You know, everyone respects each other. And we're in this for the long haul, you know, and I see a lot of good things happening in the future.
Isaac Kuhlman 25:47
That's awesome. So I want to get into a couple of songs real quick, because we did mention obviously working with Jim and Toby on this album, which, you know, like, to me, these guys are like, super famous punk rock guys, because I grew up listening to him. Right. So when you brought in Toby, to help you guys on the on the vocals for Avalanches, which is the the song that you had previously recorded. For that, that split that I was mentioning, you know, I really liked that song. By the way, it's one of the best kind of sounding like, like deeper meaning kind of songs, and then all of them have different meanings, obviously. But I think that one kind of hits a little bit deeper than than most on the album. And I was kind of curious, like, what was it like to sort of cover that because it wasn't necessarily an up tempo punk song, when you first wrote it and played it on acoustic? And no, it's not technically a cover. But you know, when you brought in Toby, and then kind of got him on the song, and how did you get him by the way where you guys are already connected, or, but when you brought him in, what was it like working with him, and then basically working with the rest of the band to make that a new version of what you already had?
Tim Fennelly 26:52
I'll let Steve speak about Tony. But that song I wrote on an acoustic guitar, but I always felt like that was supposed to be a faster punk song. So it was pretty natural when we all got together as a band. And everybody added their parts to it. And it was it. That's what I felt like it was meant to be was what it is now. So yeah,
Steve Caballero 27:21
as far as Toby associated with that song. So the whole idea was when we were recording this record, thinking of like, what can we do to help spice it up and get some attention? Well, let's reach out to some of the guys that we know in different bands and see if they want to do some guest spots guest singing. So first person that came to my mind was Toby because he owed me one, because I played guitar, and did a music video for him on his last album. So I knew if I asked him, he wouldn't say no, because he owed me a favor. So that was that was an easy one. I think the hard part was trying to figure out which song he was going to sing on. So we kind of I don't know, how do we how do we figure out that's the song we wanted him to sing on
Tim Fennelly 28:11
Steve Caballero 28:12
Oh, so Cameron, it was cameras. I think
Tim Fennelly 28:14
we actually wanted Jim to do that. No, okay. And then Cameron was like, No, Jim would be better on this song. Okay,
Steve Caballero 28:22
so there you go.
Isaac Kuhlman 28:24
We'll take your word for it.
Steve Caballero 28:24
So when Toby comes in, you know, Toby, like wants to be well prepared, you know, and he knows his songs. He's not a very prepared to come in and sing someone else's song and how they wrote it, and their and the meaning behind it to make it sound legit. So we had to work with Toby a little bit. You know, I kind of stepped in as kind of like the producer and actually just kind of guiding them and telling them no, that's not it, you know, over and over and over until I actually heard Toby Morse's voice, and I go, like, that's what we want to hear. You know, so he was just trying to figure it out himself. And, you know, I think he had a lot of pressure because, like I said, you're coming to the studio, doing this job. And we I don't know what, what's expected of me. You know, he brought a crew with him, you know, and so there was guys in there watching the whole process as well. Um, but we nailed it. You know, we, we got him to to bring out his voice and in the song and it came out amazing. I'm super impressed on how it all came together.
Isaac Kuhlman 29:36
Yeah, I mean, I remember growing up listening to H2O Go that album and he did a cover of like a prayer by Madonna. So I'm like, if you can sing that and a punk version. Anybody, right?
Tim Fennelly 29:47
Toby can sing. It was pretty funny. Because when he was trying to figure out what to do, he was actually singing. He was kind of singing like I had sung it. I think that's where Steve was pushing him to be like, no be more like you. But we want to
Isaac Kuhlman 30:05
Did you guys press play on one of his albums be like, listen to this guy sing. This is how you should sound!
Tim Fennelly 30:10
And finally, when, when Toby came out, every everybody in the control room just erupted and it was like, Yeah,
Steve Caballero 30:18
that's what you want to hear. So we were like working him to know do it over, do it over,
Isaac Kuhlman 30:23
he loves getting singing critiques from you know from a guy who just started singing.
Steve Caballero 30:27
He was holding his composure a little bit. I know you're getting bummed out. I love you, Steve.
Isaac Kuhlman 30:38
So then, obviously, let's talk about Jim's appearance on the track Inheritance. You know, when I was in high school, like I grew up the Midwest, I lived in North Dakota, that's where I went to high school, pretty much the most depressing place to ever grow up to play in and I was in a punk band. So I'm like, nobody gives a shit about punk in North Dakota, but here I am. But when I was in high school, Pennywise was literally like, it was like Pennywise, Lagwagon, NOFX, maybe a couple of punk bands. And that's like the Mount Rushmore Right. Like, you could put their you know, names up there. And almost every punker at the time, punk rocker would know who that is. So I'm not sure what your guys's perspective of, you know, but but knowing that, like a Pennywise is just this big name from long time ago. And they're still obviously making music. But what was the like your experience? And what was your perspective? And how did you feel when you're working with Jim in the studio?
Tim Fennelly 31:26
Um, it, it's still one of those situations where I kind of pinch myself that I have, you know, that we were able to get Jim from Pennywise to be on our record. And Toby, and you know, that I play in a band with Steve and these guys. It's like, everything's, it's it's very surreal. Those guys, I grew up listening to them. They're hugely influential to our music and to the writing style. And so it's amazing.
Isaac Kuhlman 32:04
Yeah, I think a lot of the big guitar sounds you guys have are very reminiscent of Pennywise. In a lot of ways.
Chad Ruiz 32:10
It's some of their amps, actually.
Steve Caballero 32:15
Triple Mesa, because that's what Fletcher plays. Nice. I love his sound. Yeah.
Dylan Wade 32:22
My beat that I learned was because of Full Circle. So I mean, it's a hugely influential to me what we have here.
Isaac Kuhlman 32:31
I mean, I think pretty much everybody around our age can recite, Bro Hymn Tribute front to back. I mean, that's just like, DNA in your punk rock jeans or something like that. So yeah, for sure. Yeah. Awesome. So now you guys have made a couple of videos for this album. And I want to talk about this because there's a couple of cool ones. Obviously, you did Gravity, which, you know, there's there's some humor behind it. You know, I think it was, I can't remember the guys name was the skate guy, skateboarder that's like, set getting set on fire in the background and stuff. But, you know, just kind of having that. That, you know, hope it was Gravity. Yeah, it was really, it was Gravity for that one. Yeah. But then yeah, just kind of doing that whole thing in the, in the house there where you guys are like each room and then all of a sudden, you're playing together. I thought that was a great way to kind of intro you know, I think either Wyoming was before that I can't remember. But that was the first video that I saw. And when I first saw, you know, you're just playing in the room and then all sudden, Steve comes in with his big guitar slide. I'm like, Wow, that's pretty fucking cool. That's a pretty cool way to intro that that song right there. And then obviously, you know, the rest of the humor behind the guy walking down the street and all that stuff. But what was it like making these videos and then obviously, with Wyoming you had a lot of CGI was like, you know, computer animated version of the band which. I can't imagine how long that would take. I don't know anybody has the patience to do that stuff. But we hope got that. So how did both of those videos come about? And what was the kinds of who kind of came up with the concepts behind those?
Tim Fennelly 34:06
You want to talk about Wyoming?
Steve Caballero 34:09
Yeah, tell them out gravity first.
Tim Fennelly 34:10
So gravity was another situation of just using our our friends and resources. We we've filmed that relatively quickly. It was pretty much a day we filmed it at Mike Miguel's house. One of his rentals. I have a buddy that has shot videos for for my other band and we used him his name's Mario Rivera. He did a great job. Mark deSalvo who has done
Chad Ruiz 34:43
the guy who painted that
Tim Fennelly 34:46
Countless album covers. Yeah, lucky to have him come into the video and play the astronaut on fire. Yeah. And of course, Kevin Staub. You know, legend.
Steve Caballero 34:59
He's a Very colorful person. So he, we just thought he would be a good guy to be the main character in, in the video.
Isaac Kuhlman 35:06
Yeah, just grinning while walking down the street while shits burning around behind him.
Steve Caballero 35:11
You know, as all Mario's idea, like, we went out to get ramen, because we that's our that's our kind of thing that we do after band practice. Here we go get ramen at this little spot. And so we had a meeting with him and kind of just throwing ideas. And that was his idea when he heard the song. Because since he was producing it, it's like, what do you what do you? What can you visualize? So he told us what do you wanted to visualize? So he's, uh, yeah, we need like a broken down empty house. And I'm like, Man, where who has that? And like, oh Mike Miguel's working on his house right now? Carlsbad. Yeah. Like, Miguel, can we like, borrow your house for like, you know, a couple hours to film a video. You know, so he, he let us do he's like, you know, just don't I'm trying to work on this house. Don't ruin it. Yeah, it all came together. And, you know, it all came together within a week or two, you know, and we just had fun with it, you know, and, like I said, it was another one of those kind of like spontaneous things. It's like, let's, let's throw money in this room. And then like, hey, let's now use each other room and put each other guy in the in a room and kind of move around and like, you're going to have room. So, you know, it's kind of just kind of like, on on the, on the whim of just idea after idea. And then we just let Mario do his thing. Yeah,
Isaac Kuhlman 36:38
I mean, that's kind of how you recording studios, generally, anyways, like, you'll have the drums in like a big room. And each person kind of in individual rooms. I don't know if that's how you guys did yours. But, you know, that's the experience of a lot of recording studios is individually recording. So it was kind of cool to see you guys in different rooms, almost like it was a band and recording studio or something.
Tim Fennelly 36:55
Yeah, Mario is really good at using just what you have around you, as props or, you know, some idea that you can just come up with using whatever is around. So you know, big props to him for for all the creativity of that video, a lot of that was him.
Isaac Kuhlman 37:15
So let's talk about Wyoming with the avatars in the Urethane CGI. How did that come about?
Unknown Speaker 37:20
Okay, so Wyoming came about because I have this friend in Spain. And his name is Victor. And he did a little like little promo spot for this drawing that I did for the salad. I made up the salad on Instagram called the Cab Salad. Yeah, so my buddy who owns this pizza place wanted to sell it at a shop. So we were kind of advertising like, we're gonna make some T shirts, and, and we're gonna make the salad. And all of a sudden, this guy on Instagram goes, Hey, I'm a big fan of you. I made this gift for you. It's you don't have to pay me. You know, this is just a gift. Because I love you. And I've been following you Oh, my whole career. This is what I do for a living. And so he made this like 30 second clip of the Dragon going through these like bushes like palm trees. And all of a sudden he comes up and holds a salad bowl and says, it says Cab Dragon in CGI. And I'm like, oh my goodness, you made that off the drawing that I did. Insane. So once he did that, he kept bugging me and bugging me. Like, let's do another project. Let's do another project. I'm like, I don't know what to do, man. Like, whatever. When when it was the idea of like, we got to do another video. That's when I called him and I'm like, Hey, Victor. Hey, work.
Isaac Kuhlman 38:43
I hear, you let your work for free. So get used to it
Steve Caballero 38:46
he's like, What? What is it? I'm like, what's not 30 seconds? It's three minutes and 30 seconds. Yeah, he's like, whoa, that's gonna take a long time.
Dylan Wade 38:54
And we're like, we need it in two weeks.
Isaac Kuhlman 38:58
We should have probably mentioned this last month, but we got a short deadline now.
Steve Caballero 39:03
The funny thing is he doesn't speak English. So he translates everything that I write and then he translates everything back to me. So the communicate communication bears, it was kind of tight there and trying to but so that was the idea. Okay, let's do an animated thing with the band. So I already have a toy character. That's my character that someone made in Japan. So I already had that as the basis of like, let's let's kind of base it off this and then he just had me shoot photos of all these guys with their whole bodies of tattoos and and what they wanted to wear and he just created it from that and I was every time he would send me a little thing I was just blown away. I'm like, I can't wait to show the band this because they're going to be blown away.
Isaac Kuhlman 39:50
Yeah. I mean, it's it's insane. Like animation alone just blows my mind and I don't know how anyone's that patient to do that frame by frame but came out pretty good. And especially for, you know, somebody who probably hadn't had, you know, that kind of big of a project to do before it was pretty cool to see.
Steve Caballero 40:09
Now he had some interns work for him, you know, a couple groms working for him as well. And there was a point where the video was almost done. And then Dylan wants a t shirt change.
Isaac Kuhlman 40:25
I don't like that pink shirt, put it as black.
Steve Caballero 40:27
And I'm like, Oh, my goodness, I gotta tell Victor, like, render all that stuff, because we got to change the shirt.
Isaac Kuhlman 40:36
What a pre Madonna Dylan, come on, man.
Dylan Wade 40:37
Steve Caballero 40:40
Tim Fennelly 40:41
I didn't match his eyes.
Steve Caballero 40:42
It all worked out. And yeah, the video came out cool. And everyone was stoked. They thought it was really cute. And, yeah, so, you know, like, like you said, we're just kind of using our resources, and everything has kind of fallen together. And even though this band has only been together for a year, we all have experience in different areas that we're bringing to the table. And so, you know, I'm, I'm going to be 57 next month, these guys are 40. And you're thirty
Dylan Wade 41:13
I'm a little baby.
Steve Caballero 41:14
He's the youngest guy in the band. So, you know, we all have, you know, musical experience and wisdom, and we're just kind of, we're just kind of adding that to the, to this band. And it seems to kind of flow really well, you know, and my first meeting with with Tim at the coffee shop, I knew that I could work well with Tim because of his attitude and the way he was as a person. And I think, you know, everyone in this band just has a great attitude, you know, very positive and, and professional and they don't, they don't lack anything, everyone brings something to the band. And that's why this band is so successful so quickly, because we're serious about it.
Isaac Kuhlman 42:01
Yeah, I was gonna say there's no egomaniacs in the band, which is cool until you told me that chat or sorry, doing one of the t shirt change. And it's like, well, fucking Dylan's ruining
Dylan Wade 42:10
It was actually Chad's fault. He told me I looked ugly in it.
Isaac Kuhlman 42:16
Yeah, no, that's awesome. And I agree, like, you know, I think there's a lot of a lot of good things about punk bands in general, like most people are pretty humble. You get once in a while, some some pretty big shitheads out there. But, you know, I think for the most part, people know that when you're in a punk band, you're not striving for like superstardom. You're just really there to make the music. And if you can make a living out of it, and play some shows, and make some awesome music along the way. That's kind of how it is. And, you know, that's awesome to hear that you guys actually don't have any tension, because that really makes the music flow a lot easier. And stops you. I guess it stops you from stopping yourself to make the music you want to make?
Tim Fennelly 42:57
Most definitely. I feel I mean, we all have like jobs and families and stuff. And yeah, I just feel lucky that we're I'm able to do this at all. With these guys. So it's it's a it's a blessing for sure.
Isaac Kuhlman 43:13
Yeah. I mean, well, obviously, Steve's got his salads and his skateboard. And I mean, he's got he's just sitting back on like, you know what, this is pretty cool. I got this band. I'm just kidding.
Chad Ruiz 43:23
Tonight, he brought us organic juice with his name on the bottle.
Isaac Kuhlman 43:28
Yeah, he's like, quick plug, guys drink this. Yeah, that's pretty cool. So if you guys have a crystal ball, what do you think Urethane is up to in five years?
Steve Caballero 43:41
I would say writing new songs, you know, and try to, you know, just we're just trying to figure this out. Because we're on a whole nother level here. You know, that we haven't been and especially me, I've been playing music since 1982. Yeah, that's when I started my first punk band.
Isaac Kuhlman 43:57
I was 1981. Steve, that makes me feel old. But I think it makes you feel a little older.
Steve Caballero 44:04
Yeah, so you know, it's like, I've been doing this all my life. But this, this band right here, I feel like is the one that's taken off the most and has gotten the most attention, and the most opportunity, and it just goes to show when you never give up on what you love to do. Eventually, you become successful at it. Yeah.
Isaac Kuhlman 44:28
And I like that sentiment too, because I've played in bands where I'm like, I'm the only one driving forward and I have to drag people with me. And it's not fun, because it's like, I don't want to have to be that guy. Like, just come in, bring something to the band. So then I actually played drums in a band where there was two other people kind of driving the music forward. And I was there just practicing. And I didn't really play drums in a band before but I was like, I'm gonna work my ass off to try to be the best drummer. And when everybody in the band was kind of like, had that same spirit of like wanting to build music, it came quick. I mean, we had like 12 songs in like, three weeks and I was like, How the hell did that happen? I'm like, I can't even drum that well but like I'm sitting here practicing like six hours a day just to get it right so I think you know when you do find the right people that shit can happen like just goes forward really quickly so that's awesome now I know that obviously I believe anyway, Chad and yourself Tim have been kind of replaced in War Fever. I don't know the situation. Do you guys all are you guys pretty much all in on this band? You guys have been replaced in your other musical projects? Are you guys still have commitments with the other bands at all?
Chad Ruiz 45:31
Address the elephant in the room. Thanks a lot, Isaac!
Isaac Kuhlman 45:38
I'm just gonna ask the question people want to know, man.
Chad Ruiz 45:41
Um, as far as me and Tim and War Fever, I was more or less like a place setting. Yeah, they'd gone through member change. And I was just kind of the guy. That was easy. Because I'm friends with everybody. I started out recording their band as a producer. Gotcha. So I knew most of their music anyway. And I it's the besides Urethane is the easiest band of guys to get along with ever. Yeah, they're just a friendliest group. So
Isaac Kuhlman 46:10
When every song is like, like, I don't have to learn much to play the same thing for two quick minutes. Right?
Chad Ruiz 46:15
Yeah, just as long as you play really fast and end on E you have every War Fever song. It was cool, you know? And yeah, I was never looked at either from my perspective, or there says, as a permanent guy. I still do play with Skipjack. That's a 26 years now. But they they were all very, very supportive. They knew that when this opportunity came, and we have the songs and the crew that we have. They, you know, we put the brakes on everything. And the Urethane project is the number one priority. I don't have any Skipjack projects, planned practices, nothing like that. It's just, it'll, it'll be there from time to time, you know, but we started this thing with good music and a good group of guys. And we want to see it through as far as we can take it, you know, I mean,
Isaac Kuhlman 47:18
I mean, I referenced Matt Skiba before, and he's playing both in Alkaline Trio and blink 182 of the biggest punk bands in the world. So it's possible. It just have to be really good at managing your time, I guess. Yeah, no, and
Chad Ruiz 47:31
they're definitely different. The Skipjack thing is more of a fad, like some really good regional successes, you know, and as far as a, but it's a different type of music. It's more of hardcore kind of stuff, you know, that it's, it's one of those. It's kind of like high school reunion time. Now, you know, that. It's something that's just kind of always there going on in the background.
Isaac Kuhlman 47:58
Like cell phones going off in the background?
Chad Ruiz 48:00
Yeah, this is different, you know,
Steve Caballero 48:02
Supposed to be at band practice.
Chad Ruiz 48:07
But like, like Steve was saying, we just have this opportunity that we, we all ended up in the same place, like four guys that are really driven towards the same goal. And we've all paid our dues on so many levels for so many years. I think a big misconception is that, like, oh, this band is just coming out of nowhere. And there's a few names attached to it. And they have all these shows, well, collectively, we've all paid decades of dues. So we were able to use a lot of our own resources within the band, we all have our own, our own set of resources that we can bring to the table. So then all we have to do is really focus on writing music and enjoying each other's company. Yeah, these guys that like, I mean 200 Memes a day between the group you know, like, we all love hanging out with each other. We're calling each other goofing around, like a
Isaac Kuhlman 49:02
Hope none of them are like offensive or anything. You guys don't want to get caught up in those traps of like, you know, 10 years from now all the stuff you guys are sharing gets exposed through some email scandal or something.
Chad Ruiz 49:11
Oh, yeah, unless there's an email scandal of like, we're screwed it unless there's a funny email scandal. Funny French Bulldog memes, me and Steve will be safe.
now, it's just it's it's one of those things where I wouldn't change a single thing that we have going right now. I wouldn't change a minute.
Isaac Kuhlman 49:32
I assume that's pretty much the sentiment from all of you guys, then.
Steve Caballero 49:36
Oh, for sure. Yeah. Yeah. You know, the term. It's all who you know, you know, to be able to get where you want to get. No, it's true. And you have to be friendly. You have to make relationships with people. You have to know people to get things done. So it is true. It's all who you know, and if you if you're not outgoing or friendly, you're not going to get much out of life. You know, and I think that we built, all of us have built relationships within the music industry that are having an effect on this band now, and the success of it.
Isaac Kuhlman 50:13
Yeah, that's great advice. Because I mean, you know, especially for, for bands that come up and you know, if anyone in the band has an attitude, that's, you know, it's going to stain that entire band's image with whoever they're working with producers, studio guys, you know, gear like roadies, whoever, like anybody that sets up anything or helps you in any way, if you're not incredibly grateful for them helping you and opportunities you have, people are gonna stop wanting to work with you. And then guess what, you don't have a band anymore, and you don't really, you don't even know why. Here's your attitude. And I think that's a great mentality. Because I actually do some business coaching, that's my day job and have businesses as well. But you know, that that is the same sentiment that I tell people in business, if you don't, if you're not good with people that you work with, or the customers or the, you know, the staff that you have, you're not going to have a business, it's going to dry up just as quickly. So it's all about relationships and being friendly. And being honest, I think that's that's the that's a huge part. You know, that gets respect, regardless of what industry you're in.
Steve Caballero 51:14
No, for sure. And when this band first started, I had to lay down the law and let them know that if they messed up, I was going to toilet paper their house. So they know, you know, they get the little toilet paper emoji going like you're pissing me off. Now I'm gonna go to Costco and get a whole you know, roll a
Chad Ruiz 51:30
what's funny is he's totally not even cracking a joke.
Dylan Wade 51:34
I carry a roll in my car.
Chad Ruiz 51:37
Every once in a while you'll just get like, you know, show gets canceled, or the something just might not work out the way we plan it. And there's just Steve with a little toilet paper emoji
Steve Caballero 51:49
What's your address?
Isaac Kuhlman 51:52
It's going to be even more embarrassing when he gets the toilet paper with his face printed on it. So awesome. So yeah, so you know, obviously, we'll we'll put some links to you guys's music in the show notes below and anything like that, but you guys have any other we talked about some upcoming shows? Do you have any other shows or anything else that you'd like to plug or, you know, say anything you want to say to the fans or people who haven't heard, you know, heard yet before we go today?
Dylan Wade 52:17
Don't worry about Steve, just listen to the album.
Isaac Kuhlman 52:22
Good advice. Yeah, yeah, no, I mean, that's, I think, I think when the hype really stops just focusing on any one member you're going to, they're going to see that there's music here. And it's, it's good for so many other reasons.
Chad Ruiz 52:38
Oh, yeah. You know what, though? It's the smartest thing, you know, how would we have launched a brand new band like this? The way we have or have any opportunities without that sort of name association at first, you know what I mean? Like, you put out a flyer for a Urethane, without anything on it. I don't know Urethane, there isn't a person around that knows what this is, you know, but if we have an opportunity to like, broaden our audience so that they can hear the music. So far. Everybody that's heard the music has been totally excited about it. It heard nothing but good reviews and stuff. You know, if it takes getting the fire lit a little bit to get everybody to see what we've done here, then, by all means, yeah, like anything.
Steve Caballero 53:29
Like when I first started The Faction in 1982, my name was attached to that, because they, they, they didn't know that I played music, and no one knew who The Faction was. So a lot of people that came to our shows in 1982 came because I was playing in the band. It was we played a lot of skate, you know, venues and so it helped it helped bring some attention to the band. So you know.
Isaac Kuhlman 53:59
So what are the chances that you guys will be on the next Tony Hawk Pro Skater whenever that comes out,
Steve Caballero 54:04
you know? It could be a good possibility. I hang out with Tony all the time. Let me skate with him tomorrow.
Isaac Kuhlman 54:13
Actually sounds awesome. Yeah, get it in there. Like I want to see Steve Cavaleiro skating through his own music in a video.
Steve Caballero 54:21
Nah would be sick. We're right now we're trying to get a song in a motocross video right now which is pretty prestigious documentary they're working on on long jumping. Wow. And there's there's a guy that's gonna try to break the world record in this in this. This video, this documentary. So I'm trying to get get some songs or at least one or two songs in
Isaac Kuhlman 54:47
that in that. That's awesome. Do you know what the working title is? Or
Steve Caballero 54:51
it's called Narnia? Narnia? Yeah.
Isaac Kuhlman 54:54
Well, hopefully there's no trademark infringement there
Steve Caballero 54:57
Yeah, and it's a Jay Weiser, wiser is the first my first name is Jay. But he's a he's a producer used to film or have the nice stuff to sell. So we'll see, you know, like I said there you know and because of my connection with Vans, Vans does a lot of events. And so that's that's another platform that can be used because of my connection with skateboarding. You know, we just played Steve Van Doren's dad's documentary called Never Catch Pigeons. It was a story of Paul Van Doren, the guy who started vans and his whole life story. And we were able to do the premiere at the Newport Film Festival and Steve Van Doren asked if Urethane would play it, so
Isaac Kuhlman 55:50
that's awesome. I saw the Instagram post about that. That's very cool.
Unknown Speaker 55:54
Vans has been aamazingly supportive of us from the beginning. Steve Van Doren and the crew have really helped us out.
Chad Ruiz 56:05
He was literally the first one to hear us.
Isaac Kuhlman 56:07
Yeah. Wow. That's pretty awesome. I mean, again, it is who you know, and then obviously, when you got those connections, and the music's good, then you just it's a perfect system. It's like riding the wave in a surf reference. I guess it'd be like, hitting a perfect halfpipe trick. I don't I don't skateboard, so I don't know.
Chad Ruiz 56:26
A sweet transition.
Isaac Kuhlman 56:27
Yeah, good. A good transition or a good rail slide or something. Yeah, perfect. But yeah, so guys, you know, it's been an absolute honor to have you guys here. I truly do enjoy the music. I look forward to seeing everything you guys do. And it's all well deserved. And like Chad was saying, you know, it's not an overnight success. Nothing is ever an overnight success. There's always 10s of hundreds of hours of work put to that, you know, thing behind it. So, you know, guys if you haven't checked out their music yet, make sure to go to the show notes below the episode for links to their music. And if you like what you heard on the show, make sure to subscribe to the podcast and share it with your friends on social media. And you can see the full video on our YouTube channel as well. Also, if you want to check out some of the written content or any of the products or merch that we have available, go to poweredbyrock.com to read our absolutely free rocking blog full of album reviews, interviews and lists to keep you entertained and find our gear as well so you can pick up some items to play and look like a rock legend. That's our show for today. We'll see you soon for the next episode. Until then rock on.
Thank you. Bye