If there was ever a time for Children 18:3 to leap to the next level of notoriety, it’s with the release of On the Run, its third Tooth & Nail long player and hands down its most accomplished disc to date. Besides gleaning inspiration from literally running up and down the road the entire two years between albums, the trio comprised of David Laurence (vocals/guitar), Lee Marie (vocals/bass) and Seth Aaron (drums) has shaken up all aspects of its previous formula to embark upon an ambitious new chapter. From new management, to fresh photo and video shoots, to teaming with producer Travis Wyrick (P.O.D., Disciple, Pillar) for the first time, On the Run emotes an entirely innovative vibe on all ends of the artistic spectrum.
“We’re really excited about these songs, and by far, we’re the happiest with this record after leaving the studio,” enthuses Seth. “Prior to recording the project, we were just like, ‘man, let’s switch it all up and take a new approach.’ Besides the changes behind the scenes, there was a lot more of a collaborative process between all the members and it came together quite a bit faster than our past two projects. There’s also a lot of vocal character from David and Lee Marie, who really weigh in with a lot of emotion, and there’s a lot of musical variety. Some are straight forward rock songs, others are poppier and melodic and there’s even a ballad-like slower song, which probably comes from the three of us bringing so many influences to the table.”
Sonically, the collection shares mutual reference points like Blink-182, Foo Fighters, Anberlin or MyChildren MyBride, but by the end of the dozen track disc, listeners are likely to conclude Children 18:3 is truly in an anthemic class of its own. The group’s tenacious touring habits have certainly contributed to the trio’s chemistry, while working with Wyrick also helped the band tighten up with whip smart steadiness and even be more efficient when it came to recording speed.
“It was the most fun recording process we’ve ever been a part of and Travis is just crazy in a good way,” jokes Seth. “Our first two records took upwards of five weeks each, but we did this one pretty quickly in three weeks. We were pulling some pretty long days, but the vibe felt great and it was nice to get in and out. Travis has been producing quite a long time and it was cool getting his expertise and perspective.”
The idea of changing for the better and transitioning towards the next level also plays into the On the Run title (which was adapted from the song “Always On the Run”), though Children 18:3 has never specifically defined an album title or song, leaving fans open to their own interpretation. Nonetheless, the band does notice a general thread of encouragement running throughout the disc, especially on tracks like the lead single “Moment To Moment” and “Why Are You Afraid of the Dark?,” while also leaving plenty of room for their outspoken faith to shine.
“Being Christians is really our identity and it’s who we are,” asserts Seth. “Bottom line, that’s what’s important and we want to do the best we can with the platform we’ve been given to inspire people and bring them to the Lord. At the same time though, there are different levels to our lyrics, and while some songs are about faith, there are also songs about how we struggle just like anyone else, what’s going on in our lives and stories that don’t have anything specific to do with the Lord at all. The whole point is to take from it what you can, like when we’ve had people say a song helped them through a difficult season even though it may have been inspired by something completely different for us.”
Clearly that spiritual perspective fuels Children 18:3 throughout its ongoing quest towards evolution, who despite spending over a decade together, still consider themselves a burgeoning band. However, after a single spin of On the Run, it’s clear the full-throttled rockers have certainly arrived on an elevated playing field that’s sure to escalate during tours with Write This Down, Red Morning Voyage and Harp & Lyre, alongside a slew of prominent summer festivals.
“We’ve never had any grand, long-term goal, but we all really like playing music and always want to take it to the next level,” sums up Seth. “Right now we’re really excited about the fact that we’re changing everything up so much and I feel like there’s a broader range of people that will like it. With On the Run and into the future, we want to write better songs, put on a better show and just keep doing the best we can, which also includes striving to be better people and serving others. We’re not looking to arrive at a particular destination, but just progress with every step on the journey.”