Long Island natives Off Guard dropped a new EP, Set The Scene, on Friday. Sound Session had a chance to chat with the group about the EP, their local scene, and upcoming plans. Read the full interview below!

You guys recently released your single, “Strawberry Moon,” and are dropping an EP later this month. What was the inspiration behind these tracks? Is there a theme throughout the album, or does each song present its own story? Most of the inspiration comes from past relationships that we’ve had and the ways we dealt with them. There is no theme throughout our album ‘Set The Scene’, but each song represents a different story with detail and emotion.

How did the name “Strawberry Moon” come into play? Well we all wrote this song in June of 2016, and apparently the first full moon in June is called the strawberry moon so that’s what we called it.

What was your favorite part of recording this new EP? The best part about it was putting all of our parts together and seeing our ideas from the very start come to life. That’s something I hope everyone has the chance to experience in their lifetimes, no matter what field they’re in.

How would you guys describe your sound to new listeners? What sets you apart from other groups within your genre? If you enjoy Pierce The Veil, (old school) Fall Out Boy or Mayday Parade, you should definitely check us out. We sound a lot like those bands. What sets us apart is we have three singers, which leaves room for constant melodies and harmonies from high and low ranges. A lot of us are also music theory nerds, so we use a great deal of it to write our songs.

When you guys aren’t playing shows or recording music, what are some of your favorite things to do? We love getting half priced apps, watching Rick and Morty, and quoting old cartoons (Courage the Cowardly Dog especially).

Sound Session spotlights local artists around the country to keep the local scene alive. Is there a strong local scene in Long Island? What’s your favorite thing about playing shows in your area? The local scene on Long Island is vibrant and still alive. We’ve all been playing shows for a while now, even before Off Guard. Our favorite thing about playing shows in the area are seeing our friends/supporters cheer us on while meeting new people.

Do you guys have any exciting plans for the coming year? We plan on promoting our new album Set The Scene as much as possible by playing as many shows as we can along with writing new music for another EP in the fall.

Set The Scene is available now here. Follow Off Guard on Facebook to keep up with future releases.