If you find yourself looking for some new tunes this summer and bands like Switchfoot and Tenth Avenue North are already in your rotation, then you’re going to enjoy West Of Here. The sibling trio of Matt, Tristan and Taylor Adams formed in 2014 in their home of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and last year they won a 2015 GMA Covenant Award for Rock Song of the Year.
The band released their debut album, The Journey (buy), earlier this year, but it came during a trying season where Taylor, the band’s lead vocalist, even lost his voice. We recently asked West of Here to tell us a bit more about their background, the difficult season and where they go from here.
CCM Magazine: You guys are all making music as brothers now, but how far does that go back? Have you made music together for a long time?
West Of Here: We started playing music together about 13 years ago as kids in grade school. As time went on we began to write songs together. By the time Taylor graduated from high school, we started recording our first album.
CCM: Did you come from a musical family?
WOH: We grew up listening to our parents playing and writing their own music in a worship band. Listening to them write songs definitely inspired us to begin to do the same.
CCM: At what point do you decide to make an official go of it professionally? Was there a specific moment?
WOH: After doing some recording and hearing our original songs produced, we were very inspired to push our music and goals to the next level.
CCM: Where did the name West Of Here come from?
WOH: We live out in the country just west of Edmonton, Canada, so often times we found ourselves saying we are from “west of here.”
CCM: For fans who are new to your music, who would you guys consider to be your primary musical influences?
WOH: We grew up listening to bands like Switchfoot, NEEDTOBREATHE, and Tenth Avenue North. We learned how to perform by covering songs from these artists before writing our own music. These bands were instrumental in shaping us into the band we are today.
CCM: ‘The Journey’ took quite some time to come together, and Taylor, I read you even lost your voice in the process. Was that a frustrating process?
WOH: Yes it was a very tough time, but in the end God is always in control. The delay caused us to take more time to write more songs and improve the record substantially. Looking back we are so thankful for struggles like these that pushed us to a new level as performers and songwriters.
CCM: More than anything else, what would you want people to know about the band?
WOH: When people hear the name “West of Here” we want them to think about our lyrics and the message in our music. As Christian musicians, we wanted to write intelligent, thought-provoking lyrics that can bring listeners to the place of surrendering to Christ, so that he can take over our lives and fight our battles for us.