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AM Taxi talks with Philly2Philly.com

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Expectations are quite high for AM Taxi  (short for American Taxi). The Chicago based quintet is set to release their major label debut "We Don't Stand a Chance" (Virgin Records) in June, and are also hitting the road for this summer's Warped Tour. The band comes into town on Monday, May 17th when they will be playing at The First Unitarian Church. AM Taxi's sound comes from a variety of influences, inlcuding The Police, The Clash, and even Sam Cooke just to name a few. (check out their video for their single "The Mistake").  We recently caught up with vocalist/guitarist Adam Krier where we discussed touring, working in the studio, and how he's enjoying every minute of AM Taxi's wild ride.

Philly2Philly:  As with most musicians, it starts as a jam session in a garage or a basement. AM TAxi comes to Philly on Monday, May 17th. Photo: www.Fan2band.comThen you eventually graduate to bars and clubs. Was there ever a point where you guys all looked at each other and said "You know what, we may have something here," as far as realizing you guys have the potential for bigger things than just the local circuit?

Adam Krier: We started just three guys jamming. We recorded and put out our first CD before we ever did a show. Thanks to the positive internet exposure and nice friends in bands, the first gigs we did were at bigger Chicago clubs like The Metro, The House of Blues  and the Beat Kitchen, kind of a crash course but we feel lucky to have started that way. By then, we were five and it felt right.

P2P:  I would imagine you guys have to consider yourselves extremely fortunate to get picked up by a major label like Virgin despite only being around for two years.

AK: We feel really lucky. Some of us have been on labels in the past and we had mixed feelings, but the folks at Virgin get what we are up to ... so yeah, we feel really lucky!

P2P: The record's release has been delayed several months. It's not an uncommon practice in the music industry, but what do you guys do during this time (besides touring) to stay motivated?

AK: We've been busy trying to get the word out on our band. Besides touring, we've been doing interviews to spread the word. We also did two music videos….things of that nature.

P2P: When you entered the studio to record "We Don't Stand a Chance," was the end result of the songs different from the way you play them live? Or have you been playing them for so long, you had a basic game plan for their direction. Producers can work wonders in regards to new ideas, especially a producer like Mike McCarthy.

AK: We did 'em the way we do 'em live. Mike made a few things tighter.

P2P: Was there one song in particular that you guys had a hard time getting down? Sometimes even the easiest songs can hit a snag in the studio.

AK: We always say if it aint broke, break it. There was a song called "Woodpecker" that we took apart and put back together a few times.

P2P: Throughout the album, I heard several influences from the band as a whole. The Police, and even The Knack just to name some. My personal favorite is "Champagne Toast," which is more on the ballad side. Do you guys ever wrestle with how soft or heavy you want your sound to be? Or what comes out just comes out?

AK: I’m not sure. I think you need to balance a bit of both. I think it changes from time to time with us.

P2P: AM Taxi is booked for this summer's Warped Tour. Quite a feat considering your album wasn't even released when this announcement was made. Expectations are high for you guys. How do you block that out and just go about your business?

AK: I don't really think about that kind of thing. We are happy to be a part of it.

P2P: What can the good people of Philadelphia who haven't seen AM Taxi perform live expect from one of your shows?

AK: Good old rock n' roll. It’s gonna be a fun night.

You can catch AM Taxi at the First Unitarian Church on Monday night, May 17th. For tickets, go to www.livenation.com

Contact Joe Vallee at jvallee@philly2philly.com