In case you haven’t heard, the always under-appreciated rock band from the early-2000’s Armor For Sleep is officially back. Their first taste of new music in 15 years came last month with the release of “How Far Apart,” and this past Friday fans were delighted again when Armor For Sleep released “Whatever, Who Cares.”
Both songs are set to appear on The Rain Museum, which is due out on September 9th via Equal Vision Records. Both songs showcase the growth and progression of Armor For Sleep since we all last heard from them many years ago, and if you’re like us here and like what you have heard so far, you can head here to pre-order the new record.
Now that we are a few days removed from the official music video dropping, Substream is proud to be teaming up with Armor For Sleep to bring you a behind the scenes peak at what went into the making of the music video. On top of that, we were able to catch up with guitarist/vocalist/overall-mastermind Ben Jorgensen for a brief chat on the video, The Rain Museum, and Armor For Sleep being back.
Check out our interview with Jorgensen below, as well as the behind the scenes video to “Whatever, Who Cares.”
So it’s been a while since Armor for Sleep put out new music. 15 years. You guys have stayed somewhat active intermittently, doing tours for the anniversaries of What to Do When You Are Dead. When did you really start writing new music?
It has been a minute! I’m always writing here and there, but it wasn’t until late 2019 that I really started thinking seriously about putting the gears in motion to make a new Armor For Sleep album.
This probably piggy backs off that, but when you started writing new music — but what made now, 2022, the right time to release music after all these years?
I’m not sure we ever sat down and discussed when the right time would be to put out the album. We just kind of always had an oath with each other that we wouldn’t “bring back” the band unless we had something new and real to create, and we did have just that this time.
So let’s dive into The Rain Museum a bit, which is a concept. For those unfamiliar can you explain some of the concept a little bit and where it came from?
Surely. The concept within the concept is about looking backwards through time and the effect that has on the present tense. Back in 2006 after we had released our concept album What To Do When You Are Dead, I wrote a short story called “The Rain Museum” that I wanted to create a concept album around. The story was about a post-apocalyptic museum and all the people who were drawn to it. At the time based on a number of reasons, we decided not to pursue that album, but it was always something I wanted to see created. The band went on a lengthy hiatus after that and we never got to see the record through.
Flash Forward to 2020. When Covid hit I started thinking about that story again and how it fit with the isolation we were all going through in our lockdowns and quarantines. Writing that album was going to be my little lockdown project. Unfortunately, at that exact moment, my marriage of nearly 8 years broke apart. I wanted to focus on writing the record but I couldn’t help but write myself and what I was going through into the story of the album. What came out the other side is a mixture of the original story and tone of the album I wanted to resurrect from years ago and the hell I was personally living through.
The press release mentioned that in addition to the pandemic that started in 2020, marriage troubles started to arise — so first, how are you doing now? Second, how hard was it to write and incorporate something so personal like that into the concept you had envisioned?
I’m doing great now thank you. Break-ups are always rough, but time heals all wounds. It was hard to write a lot of the songs actually. I was simultaneously processing this very real and very hard moment in my life while also trying to somehow create art out of it. The process of writing about it absolutely personally helped me face it in a way I don’t think I would have normally.
You just released the second single, “Whatever, Who Cares” and we’ve got the behind the scenes video here today with this interview. Tell us a bit about the video itself, how it connects to the first single and if there’s more to follow?
The video was directed by a very talented guy named Jesse Korman. We set out to create 3 music videos for this album off the bat that all connect and relate to each other. This is a metaphorical view of a doomed relationship. I am a huge fan of shows like Lost and Squid Game, and the video definitely pulls inspiration from shows like that! We have a third video coming out in September that is going to be pretty cool too.
We’re just about a month out from the release of The Rain Museum — nervous? Excited? How are you currently feeling about it?
I feel great about it. At the end of the day, no matter what the reaction to the album is, I am happy with the piece of art we are putting into the world…so everything after that is really just a bonus.
So far the songs seem to be sort of a natural sonic evolution for Armor for Sleep, familiar and yet there’s some intriguing new elements in there. Was that something you were consciously aware of, writing “Armor for Sleep type songs” or just whatever you end up coming up with was going to be on the record regardless?
That’s just what comes out naturally for me…I’ve never really had to find my way back to that sound as that is just the natural way songs come out of me-for better or for worse I guess.
Finally, you’ve got a few weeks left here of your current tour with Dashboard and Andrew McMahon. Then it’s the when we were young fest at the end of October. What’s up next?
If people like the record and want us to tour around it, I think we would all be excited to make that happen!