Cleveland, Ohio is not only home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, it's also home to many talented musicians and bands, including rock band Welshly Arms. And after sharing several EPs with fans, the band, consisting of Sam Getz, Jimmy Weaver, Mikey Gould, Brett Lindemann, Bri Bryant, and Jon Bryant, has shared their debut full-length album, No Place Is Home.
Recorded in a home recording studio in Cleveland, No Place Is Home follows Welshly Arms' 2017 Legendary EP, and includes 13 brand new songs, including their lead single "Sanctuary."
Welshly Arms recently opened up about their debut album, including where its title came from, recording the album in their hometown, the meaning behind their lead single, and more. Read on below.
Tell us about where the album title, No Place Is Home and where it came from?
Sam: "The title has layers to it, and I think the reason we went with it was there is a line in one of the songs, our song 'Sanctuary' that's on the album that says, 'No place is home.' So we went through some of the different lyrics of the album to see if there was a theme or if there was something that really stuck out as something that would really tie everything together, and that line just kinda stuck out. So definitely the first layer is that we've been traveling more than we ever have in our, our lives. And often times, feel a little left out, a little displaced. And then there's another level of it where I feel like the world is changing so much and [in] our country alone, and some political swings and just some things where it feels a bit unfamiliar. So, that's the second layer is just everywhere around us feels unfamiliar and doesn't quite feel like we always fit in, or we always have our place of comfort and whatnot. And then, I think it is kind of ironic that we recorded it in our home town of Cleveland. We're always talking about Cleveland. We love Cleveland, we definitely have a strong sense of home there. So, it's not that we're actually saying like, we don't have a home. We really do identify as Cleveland-ers and feel at home there. We were really fortunate to record this whole record in Cleveland."
What was it like to record your album in your home in Cleveland?
Jimmy: "Just to be able to be home to do it was really nice. It kept us busy. Sometimes when we are home, you're home for like two weeks and you can always get a little stir crazy just sitting around waiting to go on the next thing. Because like Sam said, we have been traveling so much, so your body just gets acclimated to that travel, like go go go. So when you do have that moment to sit down and rehash what's just happened, you're already like 'all right, let's, let's go again.' So, it was nice to be able to just drive into like a nine to five situation when we were home, and then go home and sleep in your own bed. And then having our own home studio just makes it so much easier. You don't have a ton of people working there and telling you what to do. We got to do everything on our own and make it ourselves."
Sam: "It's what we've done since we started the band. We've always been kind of a do-it-yourself recording situation. Jimmy, who plays bass, is the engineer on everything, mixes all the songs, and it's always just been that way. So it's just kinda the way we do it."
Does Cleveland inspire you at all, being it is home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?
Sam: "Absolutely. Growing up there, I think actually a lot of our parents were rock and roll fans. Well, at least my dad was a die hard rock and roll fan, had a great record collection, was a charter member to the Rock Hall. When I was a kid, they built that and I remember going to the opening ceremonies and everything. So that definitely brought me into this world of rock and roll and pop music. But also just the vibe of our town kinda dictates the way we play our music, and go out, and work hard for it. It's a hard working town. It's a blue collar Midwest town, and I think that that comes out in the music."
Why did you choose to share "Sanctuary" as the first song from the album?
Sam: "That one kinda feels like the theme a little bit. We took the line 'No place is home' from 'Sanctuary' and it just felt like how we wanted to come out with this record."
Bri: "We've been asked several times like what is our favorite song, and that's just the most difficult thing to do, is pick one of your favorite songs. But what I love most about 'Sanctuary' is just the title, the line that came out of that song, especially if it's your first album you're releasing to the masses is like, you're defensive over it. Like, this is our sanctuary, this is ours, and I think that having that, it becomes very infectious because people can own their own environment and element that they're in. It's a perfect song to just shoot out to the people, take ownership of your own life."
What would you say your sanctuary is?
Jon: I'd say the stage. That's my comfort zone. I noticed that last night when we played a private show and I realized hey, this is home for me. This is where I'm most comfortable. This is where I'm myself and I can just do and be how I choose."
Tell us about your song "Indestructible." You've said the song is about a "woman who's too strong for you," which is very relevant given today's social climate.
Sam: "We know strong women because we have one right here [Bri]. The line 'Indestructible' was kinda in our heads when we were starting to pin that song. We already have a song 'Legendary.' We have these songs that have that like empowerment, that strong thing, and I didn't really want another one where it's like, 'I'm indestructible.' So, I worked down from that word indestructible and thought about a different scenario. I've definitely been around a lot of women where it's like, you're indestructible. You are not gonna let me get away with anything. I'm not gonna have an easy time here. And then I played around with it a little bit and made it a little more fun of maybe a relational thing and whatnot, but yeah."
You've said that Legendary was a "first step towards something bigger" and that No Place Is Home shows your progression and that you pushed your boundaries and took a different approach to things. How would you say that you did that?
Jimmy: "We started as a just a jam band in a sense. We all played in different groups and different combinations of members for the last, I don't know, 15 years. And Sam invited us over one day and said why don't we just have fun and let loose a little bit? So Welshly Arms was kinda born as a band which is having fun. And over the years we put some songs out, put a record out, put an EP out. And I think we realized you know what? We need to actually make some songs, and Legendary was the first one where we really structured it to tell a story and maybe be a little bit more radio friendly than what we were doing. It kinda launched us into the Welshly Arms we are now. And this whole album, I think we tried to piggyback on that one a little bit as far as sound and identity, and then here it is. No Place Is Home.
Photos: Rachel Kaplan