R5 Finished Second Album, Set For Spring 2015 Release

Christian Lantry


"We have all sorts of different things on the record, but we like that," says frontman Ross Lynch.

In the wake of its Heart Made Up On You EP earlier this year, pop-rockers R5 are planning a spring 2015 release for their second full-length album, the follow-up to 2013's Louder. And frontman Ross Lynch promises that, like the EP, the album will be "a little departure" for the quintet that features two of his brothers and his sister.

"It's pretty much mixed and mastered already. We're just kind of waiting for it to come out," Lynch, who also co-stars in the Disney Channel series Austin & Ally, tells Billboard. "Our whole thing is to keep growing and to grow as people and a band. We like to have a lot of variety on our records, it seems like, so we have a folky song and we have more like 'Easy Love' that are a lot more swung and soulful, and then we have a song that's more in-your-face and then we have a Beatles-esque track. We have all sorts of different things on the record, but we like that. It makes the shows more interesting when you go from track to track and it's all different."

R5's sophomore album will sport 11 tracks, including all five songs from the Heart Made Up On You EP. "The EPs allow us to play new songs live," explains Lynch, adding that R5 worked with Eman, Evan Bogart, Dreamlab and Matt Rad on both the EP and the full-length set. "You tour so long doing the same songs over and over again, so when you can throw in these four new songs, it spices things up -- especially for us but for the crowd as well. And it's a good thing just for hype reasons, 'cause when we release the EP everyone's like, 'Oh, R5 has new tracks out' and they go and listen to them, and then it's 'When's the rest of the record coming?' 'cause they want more. It's more of that -- give them a little hint at it and then they want more."

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The group has also maintained a heavy touring schedule, and Lynch says he's starting to feel like R5 is gaining traction in the pop world. "We think everything's going at the right speed for us," he says. "You hear a lot of people say that the faster you rise, the faster you fall and I really do feel like R5 has had a really gradual rise and I hope we still rise and I hope we can also accumulate as many fans as possible. We've been a band for almost six years now, and we've gotten so much tighter and so much more experienced -- everything that has to do with the band has just gotten so much better. Sometimes it does get a little frustrating, 'cause you look at all those other acts that come of out nowhere and go right to the top, and it's like, 'Hmm, I wonder how they did that?’ But I feel like everything's going at the right speed. We know more now, and we're ready."

Austin & Ally, meanwhile, has been renewed for a fourth season, and Lynch -- who performs the opening theme "Can't Do It Without You" -- says he's waiting for details about the coming episodes. "I basically just walk in and they hand me a script, but I hope for a lot of new things," he says. "I'm hope it'll be fun. I'm sure it will be. It's probably the best set I've ever been on."