Switchfoot’s New Wave

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(from Billboard Magazine, November 30, 2013) Switchfoot is a Christian rock band from Southern California who has a passion for waves and sound waves. Hoping to find inspiration for a new album, they visited famous surfing areas in New Zealand, Indonesia, and South Africa during their tour in 2011. Chad Butler, the band’s drummer, says that the rhythm of the tides and waves helps him to fall in love with music all over again. The band made a documentary that followed them on their adventure as they began to create their ninth album, Fading West. The documentary has the same title as the album and will be used to help promote the new songs.

Different bands that Switchfoot has partnered with in the past, such as Hurley, Ultimate Ears, Macbeth, and Journeys, helped to fund the film. Switchfoot’s Co-Manager at Red Light Management, Bruce Flohr, says, “The movie is laying a foundation of what’s to come from the record.” They are hoping their story will reach a bigger audience since their last album, Vice Verses, sold only 188,000 copies. Their first album, The Beautiful Letdown, sold 2.7 million copies, and since then they have been struggling. The movie and album shows them as a more mainstream band which will allow for a bigger audience.

Switchfoot’s new album is set to hit stores January 14, 2014. They have already released two radio singles. Both tracks are receiving the same amount of promotion and have done particularly well. One of the singles, “Love Alone Is Worth the Fight,” is the first single played by all 55 Christian adult contemporary stations in its first week. Flohr says they are relying less on radio and more on how the film and album can promote each other. The band has already been getting festival and tour offers, and they plan to go out on another tour next year starting in March. The band believes this to be an exciting experiment and has made them more comfortable as a band. Butler shares his excitement by commenting that, “Here we are as surfers trying to explain ourselves as musicians, and finally our story is being told.”