Chart-topping UK rock band You Me At Six released VI, its sixth studio album, on October 5th via Underdog Records / AWAL Recordings. Recorded at Vada Studios in England, the band -- as comprised of vocalist Josh Franceschi, guitarists Max Helyer and Chris Miller, bassist Matt Barnes, and drummer Dan Flint -- co-produced VI with Dan Austin, whose credits also include Biffy Clyro, Massive Attack and The Pixies.
The anthemic 10-song collection known as VI boasts a combination of rock riffs, indie pop, R&B vibes and electronica beats, as prominently featured in singles like “IOU” and “Back Again.” Said Kerrang! of VI: “This is the sound of a band who are wide awake once again, not just finding their feet, but coming out confidently swinging.” Of the same album, DIY Magazine has raved: “VI not only recaptures but reinvents the magic that has propelled them to be one of the U.K.’s most successful rock outfits of recent times."
Since forming in 2004, You Me At Six has scored four U.K. Gold records and four U.K. Top 10 albums, also notching an unparalleled 15 consecutive A-List singles on BBC Radio One. On the touring end, You Me At Six has gigged alongside luminaries like 30 Seconds To Mars, Paramore, Twenty One Pilots, Fall Out Boy, All Time Low and Bring MeThe Horizon, headlining the NME/Radio 1 stage at both Reading and Leeds in 2017 and the second stage at Download Festival this year.
You Me At Six will be touring the U.S. and Canada in support of VI in 2019. I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with frontman Josh Franceschi not only about VI and touring North American, but Franceschi's long-term fandom of Arsenal. More on all things You Me At Six can be found online at www.youmeatsix.co.uk.
When did you first become a fan of Arsenal?
Josh Franceschi: My dad first took me to a game when I was six months old. So my whole life.
What makes you loyal to Arsenal?
Josh Franceschi: The connection to my family, Dad in particular. Love football and love the club.
Do you have a favorite player on Arsenal?
Josh Franceschi: Right now, it has to be [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang. He reminds me of [Thierry] Henry but more over I love players that really want to celebrate the identity of the club both on and off the pitch.
When did you last attend an Arsenal match?
Josh Franceschi: I'm a season ticket-holder, but unfortunately the band gets in the way quite a lot. My last game was a few weeks ago against Everton.
So you have an ideal spot to watch Arsenal games at...
Josh Franceschi: Yeah, at The Emirates Stadium.
Do you have any musician friends that also support Arsenal?
Josh Franceschi: Max in the band is also a Gooner. As is my friend Jet from The Struts, Joe from Nothing But Thieves, and I briefly spoke to Chris from the Foo Fighters about Arsenal as well.
Are there any teams you follow in other sports or leagues like you do Arsenal?
Josh Franceschi: Not really. I like boxing and of course am a big AJ [Anthony Joshua] fan.
How do you feel about American soccer?
Josh Franceschi: It's growing. Quality is getting better, with more overseas players going to the MLS. It has incredible fans and passion and atmosphere all benefitting. Your pundits are pretty shocking on Fox Sports though. People who really have done nothing in the game like Warren Barton talking absolutely nonsense.
Sports aside, You Me At Six just released a new album called VI. What can you tell me about it?
Josh Franceschi: It's a pretty diverse and sonically different album to anything we've done before. It’s got a good energy to it and we really got into a lot of details on this album and anything felt easy or what we'd done before we sacked it off.
What is your favorite song on VI, and why?
Josh Franceschi: Probably “IOU," as it's the most progressive You Me At Six song we've done. It combines all the favourite elements of preferred types of genres and sub-genres.
How long did the band spend making VI?
Josh Franceschi: We honestly recorded it in, give or take, 5 weeks. But we started writing initial ideas on the road back in 2017.
Word has it that You Me At Six will be touring the States in early 2019. What can fans expect on the U.S. tour?
Josh Franceschi: Word is right. We are! It will be a great tour and we're immensely looking forward to performing for our U.S. fans once again. It'll be a highlight of their year, no doubt.
What is the last concert you went to for fun?
Josh Franceschi: I went and saw a band called Marmozets who we're taking on tour in the U.K.
Finally, Josh, any last words for the kids?
Josh Franceschi: Stay in school, until you drop out.