I had the pleasure of sitting down with Leighton Antelman, the vocalist and primary lyricist for Lydia. The band had been on tour with Golden Sun and Hrvrd, performing their widely-acclaimed album “Illuminate”, from front to back. I chatted with Antelman about the tour, their writing process, and the importance of moving forward.
HHM: What was the inciting action that led you to do this tour, the ‘Illuminate’ Tour?
Leighton: We wanted to do it for the five-year anniversary, but we had been on the road [with The Maine] and didn’t want to just throw a tour together at the end of the year. We wanted to do it properly, so we moved it up to this year.
HHM: Had you known any of the other bands before this tour was put together?
Leighton: We’ve been friends with Golden Sun for a little while, but I hadn’t met Hrvrd until this tour.
HHM: How long have you been on this run?
Leighton: We’re about three-quarters in.
HHM: And how has it been going?
Leighton: It’s been really great, the fans have been crazy. They’re crazy about this record.
HHM: I saw! I was so happy, there was such a big line outside! At least a hundred people.
Leighton: I didn’t get to see, that’s really cool.
HHM: I know that in 2010 you had a lot of inter-band turmoil, and then you went on hiatus for a year before releasing “Paint it Black”… Did you feel like the two albums you released after the hiatus were vastly different from the rest of the discography, since you’d lost two of the founding band members? Did you feel like you had to reinvent yourself?
Leighton: I wouldn’t say reinvent myself — or the band. I just see Lydia as an evolving, changing band. I enjoy playing with different people, and I don’t try to harp on it too much, I try to let it go and be what it is. So as an ever-changing band, this is just the band’s current state. It’s not like there are bad feelings or anything like that — it’s just what the band was back then.
HHM: That’s a great perspective. It’s good to always be progressing, to be fluid and not fixed into thinking, “this is going to be the lineup we’re going to have for the next ten years”. It’s good to go with the flow and have realistic expectations, because people’s plans change and people’s lives change…
HHM: The current members of the band are Matt, Justin and Craig, and yourself. correct?
HHM: Did any of these members join after 2010, to take Mindy and Steve’s places?
Leighton: Yeah, Matt and Justin came on after the break, and they’ve been there ever since.
HHM: Had you known them prior?
Leighton: Through friends of friends. I look at them as being just as big a part of Lydia as anyone ever has been.
HHM: Does everybody write?
Leighton: I wrote Paint it Golden, and Devil, which just had its one-year anniversary a few days ago. For Devil, Matt, Justin, and myself wrote for it.
Interview by Eliana Siegal
View photos from the show HERE
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- photos: Lydia, Golden Sun, HRVRD live at Greene Street Club in Greensboro NC
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