STORY WRITTEN BY GARY GRAFF
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Putting together a live show isn’t easy for All Time Low anymore.
The Maryland rock quartet has released six albums — plus the odd film soundtrack or compilation contribution — during the past 10 years, meaning there’s a body of work that runs from fan favorites such as “Dear Maria, Count Me In,” “Weightless” and “Somewhere in Neverland” to deep tracks and B-sides. All of that has to be considered for the band’s set lists, but frontman Alex Gaskarth considers it a good problem to have.
“It’s kind of a cool position to be in,” Gaskarth, 27, explains by phone from a tour stop in Columbus Ohio. “We have so many CDs and so much music, it’s really fun for us to be able to figure out exactly what works best live and things like that.
“It’s kind of been a blur; we got right out of high school and started touring. But it hasn’t been a flash in the pan and it hasn’t moved so fast that we’ve lost ourselves in all of it. It’s continued to work for us.”
Along the way, meanwhile, Gaskarth has himself as a go-to songwriter, collaborating over the years with groups such as Yellowcard, Simple Plan, McBusted and, more recently, on both albums by Australian chart-toppers 5 Seconds of Summer. That, Gaskarth says, has also paid dividends for All Time Low — whose most recent album, “Future Hearts,” gave the quartet its best-ever debut last month, at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and No. 1 on the Top Rock Albums chart.
“I think with any writing experience it’s a learning process,” Gaskarth says. “The cool thing with writing for others is you get to step outside of your box and write from a completely new place and sort of through someone else’s voice. If anything, when I’m writing for other people and then come back to All Time Low, I sort of come back into it with a handful of new tricks and a new way to approach how we write for All Time Low.
“So it’s very educational at times. I’m sure I’ll keep doing it.”