Rock 'n' roll has long glorified the idea that "it's better to burn out than to fade away," as Neil Young sang. Switchfoot aren't buying it. These San Diego-based alt rockers seem more interested in a long, slow burn. On their ninth studio project, Fading West, they continue to smolder like the abandoned embers of a beach campfire. They're not impulsive kids screaming for attention. Instead, they're veteran musicians content to get their message across without resorting to maximum volume.
They're even taking their time introducing the band's new music, starting slowly with a new EP -- a three-song teaser meant to whet fans' appetites -- followed by a movie premiere and a two-month fall tour (all are titled Fading West, by the way). For those who can't catch the indie feature in theaters, a digital release slated for early December should make a nice Christmas gift and can tide you over until January 14, 2014, when the full-length Fading West hits.
Early signs indicate it will be worth the wait. The band says they have never worked so hard on a project or traveled so far for inspiration. The movie tells at least part of that story, taking you on a two-year journey through the lives of this band of brothers, from the surf to the stage and on many stops in between. That up-close look jibes nicely with the tour, which promises to be a more intimate, acoustic show.
After 17 years, Switchfoot have proven they're not going for a fast burn, but they're not going to quietly fade away, either. They have plenty of life left, as the entire Fading West package proves. Get a taste of Switchfoot's newest music as well as favorites from throughout their career in our Switchfoot West Coast Mix playlist.