Jack Barakat of All Time Low Opening Bar in LA

Mackenzie Hall, writing for Alt Press, talks with Jack Barakat of All Time Low about opening his new bar, The Riff, in LA.

I mean, I’m pretty biased to the pop punk, pop rock genre. My [birthday] playlist, I’m doing Green Day, Blink-182, Jimmy Eat World, Good Charlotte, you know the stuff I grew up on. But, the coolest thing about The Riff is that we’re going to play Muse, we’re going to play harder rock, we’re going to play hip-hop. It’s really going to be all over the place, and it’s not going to be a club. There are a lot of clubs in LA, where it’s all about who you know to get in and you’re standing on a table to buy a bottle. We just want a whiskey-inspired bar. There’s no cliques, there’s no anyone kind of looking down on you. It’s just going to be very kind of chill spot.

Review: All Time Low – Future Hearts

All Time Low - Future Hearts

Properly appreciating All Time Low’s Future Hearts requires a bit of background education. While the Baltimore quartet’s newest effort is impressive in its own right as a complete and well-rounded pop record, the gravity of All Time Low’s current success, in songwriting and in relativity, weighs more when it’s put in context.

Put simply, the argument can be made that All Time Low shouldn’t be in this position; they shouldn’t be releasing Future Hearts at all, and certainly not to this much fanfare. The band didn’t just face a major crossroads after the release of its 2011 major label debut Dirty Work, but a question of whether they should still exist.

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Review: All Time Low – Don’t Panic

All Time Low - Don't Panic

There’s a fine line between imitation and innovation. All Time Low had two options: try to be the next Fall Out Boy or try to be All Time Low. They chose the latter and for that, myself along with many others worldwide are eternally happy with this decision. After the band’s breakthrough album, So Wrong It’s Right, pressure mounted on the four young men from Baltimore, Maryland to be the next big crossover act from the scene. What followed were Nothing Personal and Dirty Work, two albums that saw the band go from simply a pop-punk act to spreading its wings and diversifying its sound. Unfortunately, the attempt to write the next big radio hit was not a successful venture and All Time Low had to return to the drawing board. Although not critically as well-received as its predecessors, it showed the band had chops to transition from the Warped Tour crowd to a potentially bigger atmosphere. It was just the early stages of what sets up Don’t Panic, the band’s fifth full-length album to date.

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Review: All Time Low – Dirty Work

All Time Low - Dirty Work

Time is the essence of life, and with time comes changes and phases. With time we grow, develop and mature as beings; some things we have come to love and admire fall by the wayside and we discover new entities to fill the voids. This is what a lot of All Time Low fans have witnessed – a band that that has grown over time into the monstrous band they are today. After two albums and a classic EP, the band decided to take a different route with their last album, Nothing Personal, which was frowned upon by the overwhelming majority for its glossed over pop sound. Now, it’s no secret that the guys have been aiming for a wider audience after taking the scene by storm. Nothing Personal was the first step in that direction but failed to reach the ultimate goal. Two years later and the band’s back to try again with Dirty Work.

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Review: All Time Low – Straight To DVD

All Time Low - Straight To DVD

In 5 years All Time Low has skyrocketed to the forefront of the scene, going from Baltimore high schoolers to world tour headliners in no time. Last year the band released their third full length, Nothing Personal, which had an expansive yet defined sound. The band took a step back from up tempo pop punk anthems and instead chose to take a step towards stadium-filling pop rock hits. While this transition may have alienated fans, the band still seems to draw attention and excitement from the believers. When “Weightless” was released last March, AP.net was flooded with mostly praise and love for the band. It showed the band could produce a larger sound and still be real with who they are. That was what this band has always been about, and they have never lost that. But with all the good there is always going to be the bad as well. No one is perfect and ultimately four guys can’t please everyone.

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Interview: Alex Gaskarth of All Time Low

All Time Low

So I first off want to thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to sit down and answer a few questions for us here at AbsolutePunk.net.

No problem at all, I’m excited to have the opportunity to sit down and answer some questions for you guys.

Can you introduce yourselves and tell us what you do in the band?

My name’s Alex Gaskarth and I sing and play guitar in the band All Time Low.

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Review: All Time Low – Put Up or Shut Up

All Time Low - Put Up or Shut Up

Pop-punk never has been and never will be a genre to converge on innovation. Regardless of how much the purists, nostaligsts, and old-time Drive-Thru loyalists might argue for the accomplishments of their once-favorite acts, those days of novelty have since passed. With those claims already staked out, hordes of visitors have arrived in a quest to find their own stamp of land in this crowded settlement, doing so with an homage to their predecessors, but at the same time working to establish a proper identity in a sweet sound all their own.

A cursory glance through the latest offering from All Time LowPut Up or Shut Up, reveals an act that kowtows in such a style, with more than a passing resemblance to bands like Fall Out Boy, The Starting Line, and Cartel. In reality, however, that is an overly simplistic conclusion to reach. Sure, thematically, the band does not establish itself as a wholly disparate entity by any means, but that is not the name of the root game here, really. All Time Low most certainly gives the “what’s up?” head-nod to the scene heavyweights, but tosses in plenty of proprietary flair to earn due respect.

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Review: All Time Low – The Party Scene

All Time Low - The Party Scene

I remember when I was 17 years old. I did a lot of stupid things, as well as some great things, but I never did what the 4 members of All Time Low did. That would be releasing a debut album under independent label Emerald Moon Records. Hailing from Baltimore, All Time Low (consisting of lead vocalist and guitarist Alex Gaskarth, guitarist Jack Barakat, bassist Zack Merrick, and drummer Rian Dawson) have released an album, titled “The Party Scene”, filled with great melodies, catchy sing-alongs, and energizing guitar hooks. If you were listening to this album for the first time, not knowing who the band was, you would think that this would be an established pop-punk band’s second or third album. You would think that a band with four 17 year-olds wouldn’t be able to write an album as good as this. But All Time Low has surprised many, showing that they are very talented despite how young they are. Prepare yourself for 40 minutes of some of the best pop-punk you’ll hear all year.

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