The big names just keep on coming and on the eve of their Kerrang! cover debut, southern showboaters You Me At Six bid to persuade rushonrock they can hack it with our hard rocking northern heroes. Check out drummer Dan’s words of wisdom (beyond his tender years) and then pester the hell out of the band’s management to get them back in the North East sometime soon…

rushonrock: Just how cool is it going to be the first time you see your cherubic faces slapped across Kerrang! this week?

Dan Flint: It’s quite crazy the buzz around us right now. We’re not what I’d call a High Street band but on our next tour we’re suddenly playing 1,000 and 2,000-capacity venues. We still think of ourselves as up and coming on the underground scene but it looks like the word’s getting out there somehow.

rushonrock: Somehow. But how?

DF: We haven’t really stopped touring – ever. We’ve had maybe four weeks off in between tours since this became serious and we just keep going. We’ve done a couple of headline tours and played with the likes of New Found Glory, Elliott Minor, Fightstar and Angels and Airwaves. Then we played Reading and Leeds this year which was cool so I suppose we’ve been working pretty hard.

rushonrock: Who’s coming to the shows these days?

DF: A lot of people coming to our own shows have been there through word of mouth. We’ve started to get some stuff in the press like Kerrang! but ultimately people have found out about us through a mate or on a message board or a text. The whole word of mouth thing is cool though because for people to take the time to recommend us means we must be doing something right.

rushonrock: And are the gigs going down well with new fans and old punters alike?

DF: The thing we find most difficult right now is not having the album [Take Off Your Colours] out. But that’s all about to change. At the moment we’re doing 50 or 55 minute shows and people only know four or five songs from our MySpace site. It will be great when the rest of the stuff is finally out there on October 13.

rushonrock: So who inspires YMA6?

DF: Our influences are really diverse. Everyone likes the classic bands like New Found Glory, Brand New and Incubus. But Max and Chris like their metal bands like Lamb Of God and Rage Against The Machine – we saw them at Reading and they were superb. We all like pop rock stuff and I’m into a bit of R&B. I go clubbing from time to time and I hear all sorts of stuff. It keeps our music fresh.

rushonrock: How easy was it to pen your debut for Slam Dunk Records?

DF: For Take Off Your Colours we went away last year and wrote a load of songs but they just weren’t good enough for the record we wanted. They were just really simple pop rock songs that weren’t anywhere near what we were capable of. We binned them all and decided to branch out a bit more. It worked and now we’ve got the album we wanted.

rushonrock: Preview copies of the album have been watermarked to prevent leaks on the web and yet YMA6 are a product of the internet age. What’s your view on music and the web?

DF: We’re a band who’s grown up with the internet so we’re very open to what you can do through that medium and we know how it can work for a new band like us. It’s fair to say You Me At Six wouldn’t be where we are today without MySpace and the internet. The whole download thing is very important – both legal and illegal stuff. It’s great to get your name and your music out there and the internet is excellent for staying in touch with fans through blogging and message boards.

rushonrock: And where do you sit on file sharing and free music?

DF: Downloading music for free is a strange one. I know that kids these days can’t afford to buy everything they’d like to buy and if a 15 or 16-year-old somehow gets hold of one of our songs and it makes him buy the album or come to a show that’s Ok with me. I don’t like the idea of kids stealing stuff off the internet but it happens. Kids always want to hear new stuff and anything on MySpace can be ripped so what’s the answer? Who knows?