In 2020, there has been no short supply of anxiety, insecurity, and fear. These are trying times, and for those who feel tested, American Authors have a message for you: you got this. The band – lead vocalist and guitarist Zac Barnett, guitarist James Adam Shelley, bassist Dave Rublin and drummer Matt Sanchez – deliver this on “Brick By Brick,” a new single for those in desperate need of a confidence boost. From the opening notes of the track – premiering here on HollywoodLife – “Brick By Brick” hits like a ton of – well, bricks. Yes, they’re bricks of positivity, encouragement, and motivation, but bricks, none the less.
Though the song’s anthemic production might leave you energized to the point where you want to climb the nearest mountain, a significant part of the song’s real power lies within its lyrics. “Brick By Brick” is about inner strength, specifically realizing that we are stronger than the challenges we face day-to-day. We just need to realize this. “ ‘Brick by Brick’ is about conquering the impossible,” the band tells HollywoodLife “No one can stop us from achieving greatness & breaking down barriers that others may have set in front of us.”
What’s in front of American Authors’ fans is a date: Sept. 18. That is when the group will release Counting Down, a 5-track EP on Island Records. Along with “Brick By Brick,” Counting Down will contain its thematic counterpart, “Sky’s The Limit,” as well as the previously released singles, “Microphone” and “Best I Can.” The EP’s title track has been described as a gentle, melancholy song about dealing with hope and despair while being separated from loved ones. Though it was inspired by the band’s time out on the road, the song has taken on some extra context in the wake of COVID-19.
“That whole idea of being away from a loved one which resonated now more than ever,” says Zac Barnett in a statement, “because we can’t see our loved ones. It also works as an ode to live shows – it’s ‘counting down’ till we get to see the people that we love and do the things we love again.”
Formed after the members met while attending Berklee College of Music in Massachusetts, American Authors spent their first years in Boston before relocating to Brooklyn. They started to build a buzz with their song “Believer” on alternative rock radio, before breaking through with 2013’s “Best Day Of My Life.” Certified triple-platinum, the song propelled American Authors into the spotlight. The track was featured on everything from the MLB to The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Their energetic live shows and touring has built them a loyal following around the world.
The band would probably be playing live at this very minute in support of their 2019 album, Seasons, but that will have to wait. Until then, fans can count down until Counting Down is live, and know they can take down their own challenges, “brick by brick.”
American Authors’ “Brick By Brick” hits all digital streaming services on Aug. 21. You can pre-order Counting Down here.